Pacific alumnus Jasjinder “Jas” Cheema ’09, PharmD, BCPS helps doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students dive into the world of pediatric pharmacy. A board-certified pharmacotherapy specialist and pediatric pharmacy specialist, Dr. Cheema is the pharmacy clinical coordinator and pediatrics pharmacist at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital. He was recognized as the 2019 Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) Preceptor of the Year for the Bakersfield region.
He challenges his students to adopt a mindset of lifelong learning. His students shared, “Dr. Cheema is very enthusiastic about his field. Dr. Cheema does an excellent job guiding student pharmacists into the world of pediatric pharmacy. He takes the time to develop a thorough and engaging introduction of this specialty area.”
“Many students do not have prior exposure to pediatrics and often feel intimidated,” said Dr. Cheema. “My advice for facing pharmacy-related challenges is to build a problem-solving method; utilize reliable drug information resources and incorporate that information into daily practice. Reading is fundamental; keep building your cerebral toolkits.”
He enjoys the fresh perspective students bring when they come on rotation. Their questions and approach to disease management provoke deeper understanding of clinical decisions and advances in patient care. “Teaching and precepting students are great ways to push one’s own knowledge base,” Dr. Cheema said. “Students may have interests in topics that I do not have exposure to in my daily practice. It is a great way to explore different parts of pharmacotherapy and pathophysiology to continue to grow in my own practice.”
Kimberly A. Hoffmann ’89, PharmD, BCPP, clinical professor of pharmacy practice and regional coordinator for Bakersfield, said, “Dr. Cheema is a very knowledgeable professional, who is also kind and compassionate to both his patients and his students. He is in high demand caring for children who are very ill, but he also makes time to ensure that our students are learning and understanding the vital role they will play as pharmacists in our communities. Dr. Cheema is patient and allows his students to arrive at the appropriate clinical decision by encouraging them to think on their own. His students have the utmost respect for him as a kind person and great mentor.”
By Kate M. O’Dell, PharmD, BCPS