Ken Potvin, Director of Admissions, Professional Relations, and Undergraduate Affairs, retires after twelve years of service at Waterloo Pharmacy

Friday, September 27, 2019

Nancy, Ken and Dave smiling

Nancy Waite, Ken Potvin, and Dave Edwards at Ken's retirement celebration

This week we celebrated the retirement of Ken Potvin, Waterloo Pharmacy’s inaugural Director of Admissions, Professional Relations, and Undergraduate Affairs. In his twelve years with the School, Ken was instrumental in developing and refining the pharmacy admissions process and creating the Conditional Admission to Pharmacy opportunity for high school students, the only one of its kind in Canada. His tireless efforts and attention to detail have ensured that our pharmacy students are second to none.

“We all owe Ken a debt of gratitude for the vision and guidance he’s contributed to our School and program,” said Dave Edwards, Hallman Director, at Ken’s retirement celebration. “We can sometimes take for granted the outstanding quality of our students, and it’s important to remember that much of that is due to Ken’s leadership in administering our admissions process.”

Those who’ve worked with Ken know that he is a master of numbers.  It seemed only fitting to acknowledge his contributions by reflecting on the numbers that demonstrate his tremendous impact on our School and program:

Ken Potvin has:

  • Read over 5,300 Pharmacy applications and almost 1,800 high school applications for CAP status
  • Conducted 13 Spring admission cycles, and 9 Fall admission cycles, totalling almost 3,000 interviews for Pharmacy applicants
  • Assessed the 6,000 separate Fundamental Skills Assessment tests completed by those interviewees
  • Personally interviewed over 500 CAP applicants who reach that stage
  • Spoken to thousands of prospective applicants and their parents at open houses, professional school fairs, and the Ontario Universities’ Fair

In addition, he’s supported pivotal projects in the history of the School. Ken contributed to several accreditation reviews, strategic planning processes, and major program changes like the transition to the Entry-to-Practice PharmD and the establishment of the PharmD Bridging Program.  These required countless changes to the Undergraduate Calendar and Course Catalog, and Ken’s attention to detail was critical in their successful implementation.

“It has been incredibly satisfying to have been part of the team that established Canada’s tenth pharmacy school, which in a very short time has built a solid reputation within our profession,” said Ken. “The fact that 98% of our admitted students successfully complete our program, means that those of us involved in recruitment and admissions are doing something right.  I am grateful to have had this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and to have helped so many impressive young people reach their goal of becoming a pharmacist.”

Thank you, Ken, for your commitment over the last twelve years. The faculty, staff, students, and alumni of the School wish you only the best in your retirement.

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