Skip Sub Menu

The DELTA Rx Institute:

Aligning Innovation and Entrepreneurial Leadership with ACPE and CAPE Outcomes

Andrea L. Kjos, Renae J. Chesnut, Charles R. Phillips, Erin Ulrich, Sally L. Haack, Erik D. Maki
Drake University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences




  • ACPE Standards 20161 align with the CAPE Educational Outcomes.2
  • ACPE Standard (4) - Personal and professional development: aligned with CAPE Domain 4.
    • Personal and Professional Development: “The program imparts to the graduate the knowledge, skills, abilities, behaviors, and attitudes necessary to demonstrate self-awareness, leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship, and professionalism.”
    • Key Elements in Standard 4: 4.3. Innovation and entrepreneurship – “… innovative activities by using creative thinking to envision better ways of accomplishing professional goals.”
  • CAPE Domain 4 listed various examples of learning objectives related to innovation and entrepreneurship.2
  • Guidance for the Standards, says competencies in Standard 4 are supported by co-curricular activities.1

Drake University

  • Co-curricular: Experiences that complement, augment, and/or advance what is learned in didactic & experiential curriculum allowing students to grow professionally.
  • Drake University has a commitment to entrepreneurial leadership (EL) in both curricular and co-curricular activities.
  • College includes EL as one of its Core Values.
  • Collaborates with the College of Business of Public Administration with dual-degrees (i.e.MBA/MPA), minors, and other formal curricular offerings.
  • The DELTA Rx Institute’s mission is “Instill a spirit of change and innovation in the pharmacy profession.”3


Describe how the DELTA Rx Institute provides student opportunities to participate in innovative learning environments (i.e. co-curricular activities) that align with revised CAPE Outcomes and ACPE Standards 2016.


  • Development of innovation and EL is one strategic emphasis of the Institute.
  • Programming directly aligns with CAPE domain 4.3 and ACPE 2016 standard 4.3 “Innovation and Entrepreneurship.”
  • This emphasis is incorporated through the following co-curricular activities, services, and information for engagement:
    1. Next Top Entrepreneur Competition
    2. National Business Plan Competition Mentorship
    3. Entrepreneurial Leadership Summer Internship
    4. Biannual Newsletter, Website, & Social Media
    5. Student Difference Maker Award (new in 2014-2015)
    6. Certificate Program in Rural Health (new in 2014-15)


Student Co-Curricular Opportunities
Opportunities have been developed and strengthened; additional information follows below.

  1. Next Top Entrepreneur Competition
    • Open to all majors; groups or individuals – pharmacy or other
    • Three rounds allow students to advance and earn cash prizes.
      • Round 1: Present any health-care related idea in a 3 minute presentation. Top 10 entries advance.
      • Round 2:Impromptu solution of a health-care problem with a 3 minute presentation. Top 5 entries advance.
      • Round 3: Present a 15 minute mini-business plan using an idea from Round 1, 2, or another idea.
    • Judges are professionals in the areas of banking, business, health care, and pharmacy.
    • Conducted for 8 years, with 10-25 students competing each year.
    • Funding source: varied
    • Applies CAPE “Examples” 4.3.3 creative approach to problem/challenge; 4.3.5 stimulated entrepreneurial activity
  2. NCPA Business Plan Competition Mentorship
    • NCPA student team receives mentorship from the DELTA Rx Institute faculty team.
    • Nationally, students have submitted top 10 NCPA business plan proposals for 5 of the past 6 years.
    • Applies CAPE “Examples” 4.3.2 new ideas to advance the profession; 4.3.5 stimulated entrepreneurial activity; 4.3.6 risk-benefit analysis
  3. Entrepreneurial Leadership Summer Internship
    • Programmatic Objectives:
      1. Involve students in a program that will allow them to witness and develop entrepreneurial leadership in the community pharmacy sector.
      2. Prepare student pharmacists for future entrepreneurial leadership positions within the community practice environment.
      3. Provide participating community pharmacies with exposure to and opportunity for potential recruitment of emerging entrepreneurs.
    • Other Key Features:
      1. Students conduct a project that applies didactic modules in behavioral change theory, leadership, and entrepreneurialism in practice. Project is culminated in a final poster presentation.
      2. Employs valuable mentoring from an innovative practitioner.
      3. Externally funded for 8 years with more than 40 students participating.
  4. Newsletter, Website, and Social Media
    • Biannual newsletter has been continually published to provide information and resources.
    • Website repository serves as a source of inspiration and knowledge about pharmacy and health care innovations.
    • The Institute provides at least one new webpage item (column, article, profile, resource) on a monthly basis.
    • Social media presences on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn for promotion of activities and information sharing
  5. Student Difference Maker Award
    • Recognizes a student who has been an entrepreneurial leadership role model.
    • Awarded $500 in travel support as well as the opportunity to attend a student pharmacist business development program.
  6. Certificate Program in Rural Health
    • In a partnership with Des Moines University DO, PT, and PA programs and the University of Iowa Nurse Anesthetists, provides an opportunity for pharmacy students to better understand rural medicine and the personal fulfillment that can come from practices in those settings.

Long-Term Assessments

  • Outcomes/quality assessed annually with student and preceptor/mentor feedback.
  • Undergoes organizational-level strategic planning to align with College & University strategic plans.
  • Annual report submitted to summarize activities, participants, and external funding.
  • Individual alumni survey assessment have begun to determine long-term impact of college initiatives in EL activities.



  • Promotes and recognizes EL in students and throughout the program
  • Promotes EL to the profession
  • Matches students with practitioners and potential employers
  • Application of course material (i.e. MBA) with unique experiences specific to health care and pharmacy
  • Creates opportunities for students to see and practice EL through projects and experiences
  • Builds relationships between the College and community/healthcare practitioners and EL leaders


  • Time commitment of faculty and partners
  • Garnering resources to sustain programming
  • Building awareness among student body
  • Improving perceptions about EL in all pharmacy settings


  • The Institute has developed and maintained student resources and programming that aligns with innovation and EL.
  • Investments of time, funding, along with faculty and administrative commitment are foundational to championing the spirit of change.
  • Pharmacy programs can follow similar strategies to successfully build EL integration into curricular and co-curricular activities.


A program like the DELTA Rx Institute can provide a framework to incorporate innovation and entrepreneurial leadership through co-curricular offerings.


1. Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. Standards Revision 2016. Accessed June 24, 2016.

2. American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy. CAPE Educational Outcomes. Accessed June 24, 2016.

3. Drake University. The DELTA Rx Institute. Accessed June 24, 2016.