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Medway School of Pharmacy

Medway School of Pharmacy, Universities of Kent and Greenwich
Established 2004
Type Collaborated university centre
Dean Professor Iain Cumming

Director of Learning and Teaching: Dr Scott S.P. Wildman & Director of Research: Prof Alistair Mathie

Location Medway, United Kingdom
Campus Semi-rural

The Medway School of Pharmacy is a school of pharmacy in South East England.[1] Established in 2004,[2] the School is the result of a unique collaboration between the University of Greenwich and the University of Kent.[1] Its campus is part of a shared facility on Chatham Dockyard in Medway, Kent.


  • History 1
  • Organisation 2
  • Medway Pharmacy Students' Association 3
  • British Pharmaceutical Students' Association 4
  • Campus 5
  • Accommodation 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Medway School of Pharmacy was established as a collaboration between the British universities of Kent and Greenwich, in response to a "shortage of qualified pharmacists" in the south east of England.[1] The School admitted its first students after it received approval from the RPSGB. In September 2004:[2] its first graduates completed Foundation degrees in June 2007 and in July 2008, the first cohort of MPharm students graduated from the school.[1]

The campus was originally the home of the former HMS Pembroke Royal Navy barracks. In 1994, the University of Greenwich established a campus on the upper level, investing heavily over the next decade to improve and expand its facilities. In 2003, architects RMJM started work to create a visually striking shared campus which combines the historic nature of the site with the best of British contemporary architecture. In particular, the Grade II listed Drill Hall is a state-of-the-art learning resource center, incorporating a library with teaching space and ICT facilities.

Medway may be a location name, but it is actually an administrative area comprising the various towns as they are known locally, namely Chatham, Rochester, Gillingham and Strood and takes its name from the strategically placed river set half way between London and the Channel ports.

In the early days the River Medway and its banks saw Roman Legions and 8th Century visits from the Danes. The Normans then fortified Rochester giving them control of the river. The area then became a major ship-building port and Chatham Dockyard was formed in 1547. Sheerness on the Isle of Sheppey was also developed to complement the Medway naval activities. It had a deep port and was a good vantage point for setting defense guns.[3]


The School's academic staff are grouped by subject, covering:[4][5]

  • Clinical and Professional Practice
  • Chemistry and Drug Delivery
  • Biological Sciences

The school offers the Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) undergraduate Masters degree, a four year programme which enables application for entry into pre-registration training leading to registration as a pharmacist. The school also has an innovative portfolio of short courses, undergraduate foundation and BSc degrees and postgraduate degrees. The school is offering a new BSc (Hons) Pharmacology and Physiology Programme, including integrated foundation year to launch in September 2015.[6]

Appointed in August 2007, the Head of School is Professor Iain Cumming.[7]


Medway School of Pharmacy has over twenty academic research staff arranged in the three primary research groups that are listed above^.

In the last three years, the school has been awarded over £3 million in research and enterprise income to support our research, including substantive awards from the MRC, the BBSRC, the Wellcome Trust, the Royal Society, the British Heart Foundation and Pfizer.

Their research is published in high impact journals including Nature, Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA), the Journal of Clinical Investigation and Cancer Research.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Medway School of Pharmacy has been rated 'Excellent' for its research in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 submission. The school is active internationally in many research areas and has over twenty academic research staff and a large number of research students.

Prof. Alistair Mathie explains the significance of and reasons for the School's success:

"The school is delighted with the results it has achieved in the 2014 research excellence framework (REF 2014) which will inform the allocation of quality-related research funding for the next six years. In the school's first ever independent submission to this exercise, 81% of their overall submission has been rated as internationally excellent (3* or 4*). Within this, 30% of MSP's research publications have been rated world-leading (4*) and 86 % internationally excellent. Despite being a relatively new school, their research is already making an impact to society in general with 60% of their submission concerning Impact regarded as 3* or 'very considerable'."

"According to Times Higher Education (January 2015), this school's Research Intensity ranking was in the top 10% of submissions to Unit of Assessment 3, Allied health professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy".

Medway Pharmacy Students' Association

Established in January 2008, Medway Pharmacy Students' Association has become undoubtedly one of the societies on the Medway campus representing pharmacy students at Medway School of Pharmacy.

The MPSA committee, consisting of seven students from across the different stages of the undergraduate courses, runs numerous events throughout the year to reflect the interests of its members. Previous events have included paintballing, ice-skating, trips to Thorpe Park and movie nights. The highlight of the MPSA calendar is the annual Pharmacy Ball.

MPSA also acts as a representative body for all students in the School, at local level through the Student Unions and also at a national level through their parent association the British Pharmaceutical Students’ Association.

British Pharmaceutical Students' Association [9]

The parent association of the Medway Pharmacy Students’ Association is the British Pharmaceutical Students' Association (BPSA). The association, founded in 1942, is the only national body that represents pharmacy students and pre-registration trainees. The BPSA aims to promote the interests and welfare of pharmacy students and is official student organisation of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.

In recent years, Medway students have become heavily involved in the BPSA, attending many events around the country. In February 2009, Medway Pharmacy Students’ Association hosted its very first BPSA area conference welcoming over 160 Pharmacy students from every corner of the UK.

BPSA visits the campus each year and students are encouraged to join. The School has funded students to attend annual BPSA events since 2004.


GK Unions stands for the Greenwich & Kent Students' Unions Together (previously Universities at Medway Students Association, UMSA). It is the representative body and service provider for all students studying at the Chatham Maritime campus. Students are automatically a member of the association if they are a registered student of the University of Greenwich or University of Kent. The association exists to ensure that students make the most out of their time at university and has numerous societies, award winning sports teams, commercial services and an executive committee who are devoted to making sure that their university experience is unforgettable


The School is based on the Universities at Medway campus,[2] on the site of the former HMS Pembroke naval barracks at Chatham Dockyard.[11] It benefits from the shared facilities at the campus. It is currently the biggest higher education initiative in the UK.

Medway School of Pharmacy sits prominently in the heart of the new multiversity campus at Chatham Maritime. The Medway campus is an exciting place with an ever growing student population and more opportunities and facilities on and around the campus develop year on year. A massive expansion of facilities on the Medway campus occurred when it opened in late 2005. Recent developments include Victory Pier which houses new student accommodation. You can take a virtual tour of the campus and explore more of the local area in this annotated Google map.

The campus has a mix of social and leisure facilities on site including three restaurants and a sports hall and gym with cardio-vascular and weights rooms. To find out more about these facilities on campus please click here.

The centerpiece of the campus is a magnificent library which has been converted from a Drill Hall, inherited from the campus’s original use as a Royal Naval barracks. The campus is composed of splendid Edwardian redbrick and ivy-clad buildings, which date from 1903, as well as more recent purpose-built teaching and student facilities which complement the history of the campus. The Medway campus boasts a wide range of resources for students. Access to learning resources is never a problem as the Drill Hall library has over 300 computers and a ratio of one core text book for every five pharmacy student’s.

The campus has modern workshops and equipment, including a training dispensary for pharmacy students and SimMan. The Medway School of Pharmacy has developed a suite of laboratories for 21st-century needs[12] Bus services are available to the local towns and the University of Greenwich also provides a dedicated bus link between Medway and the Avery Hill campus.


Prior to Fall 2013, there was 6 student housing blocks which offered single en-suite or studio flats.

Starting in the 2014-2015 academic session, students pursuing a degree at the Medway School of Pharmacy have the choice of living either in halls of residence provided by the University of Greenwich or those provided by the University of Kent.

University of Greenwich at Medway Halls of Residence

Located on the Medway Campus itself, the accommodation consists of flats with shared kitchen/dining facilities for 4-6 students. Each bedroom has its own en-suite toilet/shower facilities, mini-fridge and internet access with Wi-Fi (for which a charge will apply).

These halls are within walking distance of both Chatham and Gillingham town centers which feature a range of high street stores and banks. Also nearby is the Dockside Outlet Centre, offering plenty of good-value shops and food outlets.

University of Kent at Medway Halls of Residence

This accommodation, which is owned and managed by Liberty Living, is arranged in clusters of flats for 5-8 students, with each flat sharing a fully equipped kitchen. Bedrooms all have their own wash basin, shower and toilet and each room is networked.

The Liberty Quays development is a short walk away from the Medway campus and has its own social area, launderette, Tesco Express store, Subway and Domino's Pizza



  1. ^ a b c d "About us". Medway School of Pharmacy. 2007-10-31. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  2. ^ a b c "School history". Medway School of Pharmacy. 2007-11-22. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "School sections". Medway School of Pharmacy. 2007-10-31. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  5. ^ "Research". Medway School of Pharmacy. 2007-10-31. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Professor Iain Cumming". Medway School of Pharmacy. 2008-10-16. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Universities at Medway campus, Chatham - Maps and directions". University of Kent. 2008-04-28. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  12. ^
  13. ^
  • Student Life

External links

  • Medway School of Pharmacy official website
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