QUT student takes out 2021 Pharmacy Student of the Year

2021 Pharmacy Student of the Year winner Zoe Robinson (right) speaking with Dr Fei Sim FPS
2021 Pharmacy Student of the Year Zoe Robinson (right) speaking with Dr Fei Sim FPS at PSA21 Virtual

Queensland University of Technology student Zoe Robinson has been crowned the 2021 Pharmacy Student of the Year (PSOTY), following a strong competition at PSA21 Virtual yesterday. 

Ms Robinson, who enjoys spending time with friends and family as well as race car driving in her spare time, was one of eight students to make it to the grand final.

The other PSOTY 2021 finalists were:

  • ACT: Juliet Contreras (University of Canberra)
  • NSW: Stephanie Worden (University of Newcastle)
  • SA/NT: Dharshan Rasiah (University of South Australia)
  • TAS: Ashlee Shaw (University of Tasmania)
  • VIC: Alex Lotric (Monash University)
  • WA: Allira Payne (University of Western Australia)
  • NAPSA wildcard winner: Ma Christel Joyce Manuel (University of Western Australia).

Sponsored by Viatris, the PSOTY competition recognises and celebrates outstanding pharmacy students and is a highlight of PSA’s annual conference.

Students are presented with a real-life clinical situation and judged on their ability to use their clinical knowledge and emotional intelligence to identify the most appropriate course of treatment and tailor their counselling skills to provide the most appropriate advice.

This year’s finalists showed their skills in a scenario with a patient (played expertly by PSA’s very own Senior Pharmacist – Strategic Policy Peter Guthrey) who was after some medicine to keep on hand for his next headache.

They were judged by PSA CEO Mark Kinsela and National Australian Pharmacy Students Association President Verity Boustead, with Ms Robinson coming out ahead. 

A live poll during the PSA21 Virtual session allowed attendees to vote for the People’s Choice Award, which went to Dharshan Rasiah from the University of South Australia.

The PSA National President Associate Professor Chris Freeman congratulated Ms Robinson on her achievement and commended all the students for making it to the final.

‘It is heartening to see the future of our profession on show, demonstrating a high level of clinical knowledge, capability and passion – evidently, the future of pharmacy is incredibly bright,’ he said.

‘This competition provides students the opportunity to demonstrate important skills, such as gaining patient insights and patient understanding, active listening and skills that support positive patient outcomes.

‘We commend each finalist for the professionalism they displayed when communicating with the patient, taking patient history, excluding serious medical conditions and subsequently arriving at an appropriate clinical recommendation.’

As the national award winner, Ms Robinson will receive a travel prize for pharmacy-specific education worth $5,000.