Alumna Mary Gwen Miller (PharmD, MSCR) shares details of her fellowship

Degrees & Graduation Year: Doctor of Pharmacy & Master of Science in Clinical Research, Class of 2019

Current Job Title: Fellow in Clinical Sciences & Study Management: Oncology

Practice Site: Merck

Job Description: I support the scientific aspects and execution of late stage clinical development in oncology. In my position, I collaborate with other functional areas, including Clinical Directors, Document Review Committees, Regulatory Affairs, and Data Management, to ensure that our trials are designed appropriately and conducted safely.

How did CPHS prepare you for your current position (fellowship): Campbell’s unique dual degree program has been the most influential factor in my career path, and has provided the perfect balance of industry-specific knowledge and clinical knowledge. I also found considerable support from my advisors and professors in both programs. These faculty members helped seek out opportunities that would provide me with valuable experience.

How did CPHS impact you as a person: During my time at Campbell I was challenged academically, personally, and professionally. These challenges pushed me to grow into the competent professional that I am today. I was encouraged to always continue learning, and hone my clinical skills and expertise. These experiences gave me confidence in my abilities. Friends and mentors extended support as I learned valuable lessons in interprofessional communication.

What were you involved in at CPHS: Phi Delta Chi (PDC), Student Society of Health-System Pharmacists (SSHP), Graduate Clinical Research Organization (GCRO)

Most impactful CPHS faculty/staff member/preceptor: It is impossible for me to pick just one individual! I was lucky enough to be surrounded by an exceptional support system throughout my time at Campbell. Dr. Holland was my advisor. During my time on campus she worked hard to make sure I possessed the necessary tools to achieve my goals.

I had excellent preceptors during my P4 rotations. These individuals went out of their way to ensure I got to work on projects that were aligned with my interests. They also helped me grow professionally. I feel so fortunate to have worked with such knowledgeable and caring people.

Knowing what you know now what would you want to tell your pre-college self: My main piece of advice for my pre-college self would be not to rush through this experience. I was so excited to start college. Then I was impatient to get into pharmacy school. Then I was ready to get out into the “real world.” Looking back, I am able to see the value in each stage of my life and appreciate where I am now.

There is absolutely nowhere in the world like college, so enjoy living close to all your friends, enjoy learning new things every single day, and don’t take everything so seriously.

Tell me more about your fellowship: A fellowship is a bit non-traditional for Campbell students, so this whole experience has been an adventure for me. I am hopeful that sharing my experiences will help current and future students who may be interested in pursuing a fellowship.

I am thrilled to be doing work on the development of medications that could change clinical practice. It is fascinating to be on the cutting edge of cancer research, and working on projects that could change the lives of patients worldwide. I am hopeful that I will have the opportunity to present at an investigator meeting. I cannot imagine what it would feel like to present my team’s work to some of the world’s top physicians. This fellowship allows me to work on what I find interesting, and I am looking forward to the next two years.