AbbVie, a research-based global biopharmaceutical company, today announced a new cohort of Saudi students have graduated from AbbVie’s pharma training program in Riyadh to prepare them for their future career as pharmacists. AbbVie has successfully trained over 120 pharmacy students and graduates with the aim of inspiring more Saudi nationals to join the private pharmaceutical sector.
Building on previous successes over the past three years, the program returned this year to train 38 female and male students from various universities across Saudi Arabia. This aligns with the Saudi Food & Drug Authority (SFDA) announcement earlier this year which outlined new legislation that all pharmacy roles must be occupied by Saudi nationals by 2021.
Commenting on the graduation ceremony, Dr. Aws Alshamsan, Dean of the College of Pharmacy at King Saud University, said, “It is rewarding to see our students’ passion and flair for pharmacy being celebrated at the event today. It is our role, as a university, to prepare students with the academic and science backgrounds necessary to become pharmacists. Thanks to AbbVie, our students experienced first-hand what to expect from a career in the pharmaceutical sector as well as learned about the various career paths that await them.”
Khaled Fageha, HR managerat AbbVie said: “AbbVie is proud to have taken the lead in training and upskilling future Saudi pharmacists since 2015. It is, without doubt, that the dynamics of healthcare are ever-changing and evolving in Saudi Arabia. To keep up with these exciting changes, we need to constantly invest in our bright Saudi talent and offer them the skills and knowledge to help them thrive in the face of a rapidly changing healthcare landscape in Saudi Arabia. Today, we are proud of our on-going work and commitment in upskilling current and aspiring Saudi pharmacists to support the Kingdom’s goals, as expressed in Vision 2030.”
The five-week program was comprised of a series of intensive, hands-on courses to develop a wide range of knowledge and skills needed for a successful career as a pharmacist working in the pharmaceuticals sector. To celebrate this important milestone, students participated in the ceremony alongside their parents and delegates from King Saud University and Almaarefa University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Hanouf Al-Dosari, one of the students who attended the sessions, said: “This practical training experience was invaluable as it helped me to solidify the knowledge I had learnt in the classroom and showed me, as a pharmacist, what my career potentials would be like. I’ve always been passionate about pharmacy but this experience has fueled my passion even more and helped me start my career with a global biopharmaceutical company after graduating from King Saud University. I am very excited about my career to help make a remarkable impact on the lives of patients in Saudi Arabia.”
To give the trainees a first-hand glimpse of what their future career entails, the program covers topics such as Supply Chain Management, Governmental Affairs, Regulatory Affairs, Pharmacovigilance, Compliance and Public Affairs. Other sessions focused on self-improvement and assessment processes including Conflict Management, Communication, Active Listening, Innovation and Emotional Intelligence. Students also joined the AbbVie in-field team of pharmacists who demonstrated to them the real-life experience and answered all their questions and queries.