January 2017 OPA Extern Profile: Kay Bahrey
Pharmacy School: Ohio Northern University, Minor in Public Health
Undergraduate degree/institution: N/A
Rotation Month at OPA: January 2017
How did you get interested in the profession of pharmacy?
My interest in the profession of pharmacy came as a group effort from my family. I always knew I wanted to go into a profession that really helped people and made a difference in their everyday lives, which healthcare suits perfectly. My mother has been the buyer for a hospital pharmacy my whole life, and my sister-in-law, whom came into my life just before the time of career discussions, was enrolled in the pharmacy program at Ohio Northern University when we met. Both of these women have been extremely influential in my life and immensely supported my pursuing a profession in pharmacy. They explained how it could be the perfect combination of the sciences I enjoyed, as well as the patient centered care that would serve perfectly as the humanitarian aspect I desired. I could not be happier that they directed me to this pursuit and believe this to be a wonderful fit for all of my career and life endeavors.
Why did you choose OPA as a rotation site?
During my time on campus at ONU I was fortunate enough to have an incredible mentor, Dee Dee Myers, who is a passionate advocate for the profession. As a result of her efforts, I was exposed to the legislative world of pharmacy and had the honor of meeting both Ernie Boyd and Antonio Ciaccia per Student Legislative Days, advocacy events we held on campus, and trips to the NCPA Legislative Conference. Together this zealous team taught me the ins and outs of the process of a bill becoming a law, the best way to network, and how to form a relationship with your state and national representatives. Along the way they sparked my own fervor for advocacy and the OPA rotation seemed the perfect next step towards becoming an advocate for the profession. The rotation was exactly what I hoped it would be and furthered my interest in legislative issues that I hope to sustain throughout my career.
What was the most significant or surprising experience at OPA?
The most surprising experience I had at OPA came from a meeting Antonio had with a new representative. I was invited to the meeting the day of, Antonio extending the invite to aid in getting the most out of my experience at OPA. Having been to multiple representative meetings before, I felt I knew what to expect. I assumed the meeting would be somewhere between five and twenty minutes of us enthusiastically trying to impart our knowledge on a very busy legislator who lacked insight on the subject and would politely end the meeting following our spiel. Our meeting with Representative Lipps outshined all of my preceding expectations and provided a surprising and rewarding experience. Representative Lipps is relatively new to the world of pharmacy, but judging by his approachable complexion and inquisitive manner, he seemed far from novice. The enthusiasm he brought to the meeting compelled the conversation further and further and really gave promise to this representative becoming a new champion for the pharmacy community. I departed the meeting feeling rejuvenated in our efforts to better the profession and appreciative of the association that goes above and beyond to make such significant connections.
What other pharmacy associations/organizations do you belong to?
Ohio Pharmacists Association (OPA), National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA), Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) – pharmacy leadership honorary, Kappa Epsilon (KE) – a professional pharmacy fraternity
My favorite hobby is to visit local festivals and try new foods; I have been very fortunate to spend much of my rotation time in Columbus because they have a festival for just about everything and even more in the surrounding areas! If you haven’t experienced the annual Circleville Pumpkin Festival, I highly recommend it. I also really enjoy baking, working out, skiing and seeing my friends and family as much as possible. Lastly, my favorite animal is the giraffe, so when weather permits I often find myself frequenting the many zoos we have in Ohio.