International

Just as Great Britain has the BPSA to represent its students, other countries have their own pharmacy student associations. These associations form a part of a larger umbrella organisation, the International Pharmaceutical Students' Federation (IPSF). The IPSF lobbies international bodies such as the European Medicines Agency, the International Pharmaceutical Federation, and the World Health Organisation to ensure that pharmacy student’s views are represented. With the aim of getting  involved with pharmacy matters internationally and to engage with our international counter parts, the BPSA provides all its members with FREE membership of the European Pharmaceutical Students' Association (EPSA) and the IPSF.

Both the EPSA and the IPSF represent their member associations on a European and International level, respectively. As a BPSA member you will get access to all of the services that these organisations offer. This includes conferences, student exchange programmes, internships, and networking opportunities.

Below are a examples of how members of the BPSA have been involved internationally in the past:

‘BPSA at WHO’

Student Exchange Programme

BPSA International Representative Information Pack

Have you got the feel of exploring the world of pharmacy beyond borders and want to get involved?

Then becoming a BPSA International Representative may be for you. As IPSF and EPSA services grow, we become increasingly dependant on the great work our International Reps do locally. At BPSA, we want to increase international involvement of our members by raising awareness of pharmaceutical and healthcare development as well as opportunities globally.

Not only will you become the point of contact for students within your school for these International Organisations, you also become the eyes and ears of the BPSA at your school. No-one knows the local student populations better than our reps, and without those key points of contact it becomes very difficult for the BPSA to be a truly representative organisation for all 29 pharmacy schools.

What are IPSF and EPSA and how do they relate with BPSA?

BPSA is a member association of both the European Pharmaceutical Students’ Association (EPSA) and the International Pharmaceutical Students´ Federation (IPSF). Ultimately, both organisations aim to promote the interests of pharmaceutical students and to encourage international cooperation between member countries. Thus, all BPSA members are automatically members of IPSF and EPSA which allow them to participate in any of the international projects and events.

For more information on the services provided by IPSF and EPSA, click on the following websites: www.ipsf.org www.epsa-online.org

You are strongly recommended to browse through the websites to have a brief understanding of the organisations and what we do.

What are my roles as an International Rep?

  • To promote IPSF and EPSA events and projects at your school of pharmacy through emails, updates and meetings with interested students
  • To help facilitate the IPSF-BPSA Student Exchange Programme (SEP) locally which includes:
  • Procuring hosts for SEP through your school of pharmacy for research placements, or contacting local community and hospital pharmacies
  • Arranging accommodation for the incoming students
  • To organise and take part in local public health campaigns or initiatives

How long is my term for?

One year term from October through to September

So, what’s the catch?

Well, there's no avoiding it, being a rep can be challenging. IPSF and EPSA rely on the reps to advertise all of our activities. Emails from students can be many, follow ups with potential SEP hosts can be ongoing and of course it's all to fit around your university work. However, you will always have the support of the BPSA Student Exchange Officer, European Officer and your Area Co-ordinator.

Assets that are important for successfully meeting the expectations of this position are excellent communication skills, self-motivation, and a contagious exuberance for IPSF and EPSA.

Do I need to attend meetings?

Regular Skype meetings with the European Officer and the Student Exchange Officer (at least one per month) will be held to allow International Representatives to discuss issues of common concern, joint projects and updates about their progress. These can act as training sessions to help you do your job, as well as an opportunity to get to know International Reps from different Schools of Pharmacy and perhaps acquire different views on ways to approach the role.

If we're in your local school for a normal Executive meeting, then we may also ask if you would like to come along to be involved in some of the national work the BPSA does and also represent your local school. They're also a great way to put some faces to names for both the Executive and the reps.

What’s in it for me?

As an International Representative you will be the first to learn about work opportunities abroad, including internships with organisations such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP). Above all, the best International Representative will be rewarded with direct entry into the Student Exchange Programme, without having to go through the initial application process. This means that you get a chance to work in a pharmacy overseas and with over 60 countries in the list, the choice is yours.

Your communication skills will also improve. You will build up relationships with lecturers and admin staff within the university in order to do your BPSA roles, as well as with all the students who want to take part in IPSF and EPSA. In order to promote events, you will also develop your confidence talking to large groups as well as written communication in promotional emails. You will also need to liaise with various members of the Executive to get the information you need to do your job well. Finally, you can broaden your network with external contacts including community and hospital pharmacies whom might be prospective employers for you in the future.

What support is there?

As an International Rep, you will be working closely with the BPSA Student Exchange Officer and the BPSA European Officer, which are official contact persons for both IPSF and EPSA respectively. They will provide training, support and promotional materials to help you do your job.

You will also be supported by the BPSA national representatives at your School of Pharmacy who promotes BPSA events and services as a whole. Each school also has a BPSA contact lecturer who should help you on a staff level to book rooms if needed or send out emails to students. You might also consider working alongside your local Pharmacy Students’ Association.

How many International Reps should there be?

Up to two International Reps per year from each school of pharmacy.

How do I become an International Rep?

For more information about the role or to obtain an application form, kindly contact the Student Exchange Officer, Acacia at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Application Form

Click here to download an application form

   
© British Pharmaceutical Students' Association 2013