"The Foundation of Pharmavision: My Personal Story and Journey"
In 2003, despite having a remarkable academic record in graduation, I faced disappointment with overseas education consultancies while searching for admission into a Master of Pharmacy course. This experience inspired me to start Pharmavision – a specialized pharmacist career consultancy in India. Motivated by my own career journey, my aim is to provide high-quality career-related services through Pharmavision, ensuring that prospective pharmacy students in India don’t encounter the same challenges and problems that I faced.
Throughout my journey, I have come to realize the significance of the following actions and points.
The Significance of Career Planning
With an excellent academic score, I was optimistic about receiving sound career guidance and a comprehensive 5-year career plan blueprint. Consequently, I set out to find consultancies that could aid me in this pursuit. However, my encounters with consultant after consultant left me disappointed, as none were able to offer the level of guidance I was seeking.
This led me to realize the gap between consultants and agents, and I had to research opportunities on my own. Eventually, I decided to pursue a Post Graduate Diploma in Clinical Pharmacy and Master of Pharmacy (Research) Program at Curtin University of Technology, Australia, commencing in February 2004. The decision was not easy, as I had to overcome my reluctance to pursue an overseas career option in the USA due to the NABP’s rule changes in 2003, which disallowed Indian B.Pharma holders from becoming Pharmacists in the USA.
The Importance of Career Counselor Competencies
During my graduation, I took the IELTS exam and intended to pursue further studies abroad. However, in 2003, I made the mistake of engaging an agency in Ahmedabad to help me with my visa process. Unfortunately, the counselor assigned to me was incompetent and did not offer proper guidance. Consequently, I missed my opportunity to gain admission to the 2004 batch, despite paying the agency three times the normal fees. I had to wait for the February 2005 Intake. While preparing for the February 2005 admission, I faced further challenges due to the agency’s lack of proficiency. They failed to obtain my offer letter on time, forcing me to take matters into my own hands and follow up with the university myself. After much effort, I finally managed to secure the offer letter.
Handling the efficient Visa Process
I decided to prepare my Australian student visa application by myself, using a visa guide as a reference. However, I entrusted the submission process to a consultant, who unfortunately failed to submit it on time. Despite my request to request an extension from the university, the consultant refused to help. As a result, I was left with no choice but to contact the university authorities directly and explain my situation. Fortunately, I was able to persuade them to grant me an extension until January 31st, 2005. With the deadline approaching, I rushed to the Australian High Commission in New Delhi, five days before my extension was due to expire. I am relieved to say that I finally received my visa after a stressful ordeal.
Post Visa Guidance
In less than four days, I packed my belongings and arrived in Australia, completely unaware and without a place to stay. Unfortunately, the agency I used did not provide any post-visa guidance, such as seminars or workshops, leaving me with no information on pre-departure procedures, post-landing activities, airport pick-up services, or accommodations in Australia.
Pharmacy licensing process
Unfortunately, my consultancy was not knowledgeable about career opportunities in the field of pharmacy in Australia. They were unable to provide me with information about the scope of work, career prospects, and licensing requirements for pharmacists in Australia, including the benefits of obtaining a pharmacist license. As a result, I had to spend approximately eight months researching and figuring out the licensing process myself, including the examination required for evaluation of my credentials. Obtaining a good standing certificate was particularly challenging during that time, and was an integral part of the process.
In conclusion, my experience with the Overseas Education Agents was unpleasant, but it taught me some important lessons. Firstly, the role of education consultants is critical in ensuring a successful career. Secondly, selecting the appropriate country, course, and university is crucial for career planning. Thirdly, it is essential to have competent professionals handle the admission and visa process, as well as provide post-visa guidance to facilitate a smooth transition to the new country.
Based on my experience, I have learned several important lessons that can benefit others:
- The role of education consultants is critical in ensuring a successful career.
- Proper career planning, including selecting the appropriate country, course, and university, is crucial for achieving career goals.
- It is essential to have competent professionals handle the admission and visa process, as well as provide career guidance throughout the process.
- Post-visa guidance and support can help ease the transition to a new country and ensure a smoother start to one’s new life.
- Having a mentor or career coach can provide valuable guidance, skills development, and inspiration to pursue one’s goals.
Having learned from my own experiences, I founded Pharmavision with the objective of providing the highest quality services to Indian pharmacy students who aspire to study abroad. Our mission is not only to assist them in the admission process, but also to keep them informed of all career-related updates and current trends, enabling them to make informed decisions. We strive tirelessly to help them develop the competencies necessary to achieve a successful career as a pharmacist, while also living a fulfilling life with minimal investment of time and money. At Pharmavision, we are committed to supporting and guiding students every step of the way towards their career goals.