Graduates of the University of North Texas Health Science Center doctoral pharmacy program at Fort Worth achieved the highest residency match percentage in the state, at 95%.

Of the 21 graduates who applied for the residency match program, 20 were matched, far exceeding the national average of 81% and UNT’s 2023 rate of 79%, according to the Fort Worth Report. The percentage of students matched sets a new record in the school’s 11-year history.

“This is an exceptional and exemplary accomplishment,” Dr. Annesha White, interim dean of the UNT HSC College of Pharmacy, said in a news release. “There are pharmacy schools much older than us that haven’t seen such a high match rate. I am just so proud of our faculty, staff, and students.”

Other graduates who did not apply for a residency chose instead to pursue fellowships or move directly into careers at retail pharmacies.

“We encourage them to go for a clinical residency if that’s your passion. But if your passion is to work at Walgreens or Walmart or CVS, then we’re going to help you get there, too,” said White, reported FWR.

A residency is an intensive postgraduate training program that allows a graduate to work as a licensed practitioner while training under the supervision of an experienced instructor in a hospital setting, accelerating the student’s growth.

Improving the residency match rate has been a focus of the doctoral pharmacy program, according to White.

“Our faculty and staff team has been exemplary. They’re coming together with so many initiatives that support student success and prepare the students for interviews,” she said, per FWR.

These initiatives include the P4 Postgraduate Mentorship Program, the Postgraduate Training Elective, and the Office of Pharmacy Student Success. The programs help the students prepare for interviews and their future careers and ensure they have the resources they need for success.

Graduate students who applied for the residency program were matched according to their ranked preferences from a number of clinical settings, such as a children’s hospital, the veteran’s health care system, or teaching hospitals.

Lauren Robertson was matched with John Peter Smith Hospital, the Tarrant County public hospital, and will begin her residency in late June.

“I also want to work with underserved populations,” Robertson said, per FWR. “I know working in a county hospital is going to be busy. You’re going to see a lot of different things. I want to be exposed to as much as possible.”