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Innovation Challenge

Create an innovative solution to real world problems with your friends and student pharmacists!

The Innovation Challenge

  • Overall Goals:
    1. Stimulate interest in pharmacy careers by exposing high school students to pharmacy or health related problems with opportunities to create innovative community‐based solutions.
    2. Encourage student pharmacists to advocate for the importance of the role of the pharmacist and demonstrate the impact pharmacists can make on population health.

    Description: A competition, where high school students and student pharmacists will partner to identify medication or health related problems in their communities as well as innovative solutions to solve those problems. Participants will be expected to define the problem and create an innovative solution to address one of the following topics: drug abuse, immunization/vaccinations, nutrition/healthy habits, depression, stress management, poison prevention, tobacco use, acne/skin disorders, or other relevant topics. Students are free to focus on a small aspect of the topic/problem or multiple aspects of a topic/problem and create a solution.

Potential topics/problems in each of the categories above

  • Drug abuse
    • Opioid/Narcotics/Prescription drug abuse
    • Illegal drugs
  • Immunization/Vaccinations
    • Myths
    • Flu vaccine
    • HPV vaccine
    • Pneumonia vaccines
    • Which vaccines to take at certain ages
  • Nutrition/Healthy Habits
    • Obesity
    • Eating disorders
    • Pregnancy prevention
  • Depression
    • Financial impact (lost productivity, medication cost, etc.)
    • Medication side effects
  • Stress Management
    • Behavioral vs pharmacological management
    • Coping mechanisms
  • Poison Prevention
  • Tobacco Use
  • Acne/Skin Disorder
    • Social stigma
    • Lack of confidence

Materials to be submitted by February 1:

  • A demonstration or a video to capture the problem and solution
    • A brief essay may be used to define the problem and describe the solution (limit 750 words), however, demos and videos (8 minutes or less) are strongly encouraged. We want to see the solution!
  • A reflection piece which would include:
    • What participants learned about pharmacy and the potential role of pharmacists in identifying/solving community‐based problems?
    • How do pharmacists affect this type of setting?
    • How will the solution impact the community?
    • For the reflection piece, this can be captured through any means including video (limit 8minutes), essay (limit 1500 words), social media (using #Pharm4Me + your own creative #hashtag), etc.

Team sizes

  • No minimum or maximum team size


  • Plaques for the top three teams (1 each for high school and pharmacy school)
  • Certificates for every participant
  • $1000 travel award for one student pharmacist representing the top three teams’ student pharmacists to attend the AACP Annual Meeting to receive award
  • Cash Award to high school for STEM Programs. Please note that if teams have students from more than one high school, each high school involved will receive the specified cash award. The limit is five high schools per one team to receive this award.
    • 1st place: $1000
    • 2nd place: $500
    • 3rd place: $250

Assessment Criteria

  • Reflection: 25 points
  • Solution: 75 points
    • Innovation: 20 points
    • Presentation: 15 points
    • Content: 40 points
      • Impact of solution: 10 points
      • Relevance of solution to participants’ community: 15 points
      • Accessibility of solution: 15 points

Suggested Timeline
Feb – March:

  • Identify teams including student pharmacists and high school students
  • Identify pharmacy or health related problem
  • Brainstorm innovative solutions


  • Assign projects for high school students and student pharmacists to work on over the summer
    related to the identified problem or possible solutions

Sept – Dec:

  • Finalize projects for high school students and student pharmacists to work on over the summer
    related to the identified problem or possible solutions
  • Begin preparing Innovation Challenge materials to submit




Want to join the Innovation Challenge but have a few questions? Email us at pharm4me@aacp.org!


Whatever your interests, a career in pharmacy can be rewarding in a number of ways. Learn about all the opportunities pharmacy can offer.