Student Life

students walking on park path

What you experience outside the PharmD curriculum can be as vital to your pharmacy career as your formal academic learning.

As a UCSF PharmD student, you’ll grow beyond the curriculum. You’ll collaborate across UCSF with peers in medicine, dentistry, nursing, physical therapy, and the PhD programs—an advantage of learning in a university focused exclusively on health. You’ll develop a strong sense of professionalism and public mindedness. You’ll build leadership skills and widen your range of experience within the rich diversity and excitement of San Francisco. You’ll join your classmates in:

  • Organizing community health fairs, clinics, and service projects.
    You’ll have opportunities to help patients through student-organized events. The ability to work with San Francisco’s underserved populations is a driving force behind our students’ dedication to community service initiatives.
  • Leading the way in pharmacy professional organizations.
    You can become deeply involved in issues that impact patients and the pharmacy profession in practice, policy, advocacy, and research.
  • Exploring in the latest in health care and health sciences innovations.
    Check out the campus calendar for any week at UCSF—you’ll find lectures, seminars, and symposia on a variety of science and health-related topics. At UCSF, the opportunities for exposure to new ideas and developments are unmatched.
  • Pursuing special interests through campus involvement.
    In UCSF’s 100+ student organizations, more than 15 of which are pharmacy-student-specific, you’ll find people with shared passions and interests studying across UCSF’s degree programs. A broad array of student organizations—including educational, social, cultural, artistic, recreational, political, and spiritual organizations—reflect the diversity of UCSF students.
  • Keeping active through intramural sports and recreation programs.
    Whether it’s basketball, volleyball, hiking, swimming, yoga, kayaking, or more, UCSF encourages students to stay balanced.

These experiences provide a vibrant backdrop to your UCSF PharmD education.

Living in San Francisco

As a UCSF PharmD student, you’ll thrive in the rich culture and intrigue of one of the world’s great urban centers. San Francisco’s famous dining scene, natural beauty, world-class museums, and diverse neighborhoods make this a location like no other.

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This city is beautiful. There's so many different hiking trails, so many different parks to explore, so many different restaurants to go to. There's, really, a lot of amazing ways to spend time in the city and to have fun.

Golden Gate Park has a ton of stuff to do. There's the Conservatory of Flowers. There's the Botanical gardens. There's the Japanese Garden and a tea garden. There's also Ocean Beach, which is very close by, too. You can have bonfires there. You can just lay out on the beach when it's nice out.

The most surprising thing about living in San Francisco so far has been how well the public transportation connects the city. Between the buses and the trains, it's very easy to get around.

The curriculum does allow you to shave off a year. And so because of that, if you think about it, that's one less year of rent that you would be paying. To help offset costs of off-campus housing, they actually give students that are living in the area but aren't on campus a living stipend. And so that helps to cover some of the monthly costs the students living on campus don't have.

The education is unparalleled. The professors that you are going to be coming in contact with are at the top of their field. So while yes, it's expensive to live in San Francisco, coming to UCSF makes it worth it.

See more: Video tour.


Student Life