The mentors

Simon Furletti

Simon Furletti, BPharm, class of 2010;MPharmPrac, class of 2016

When I started as a pharmacist I had a great support network and wanted to provide that to others. For me, being involved in mentoring is professionally rewarding in part because it keeps me connected to the University and in contact with many up-and-coming young pharmacists.

I actually dislike the word mentor – it’s simply a supportive relationship. Each person is motivated differently and all you do is help them make the right choices for themselves. It’s more about clarifying in their mind about the reasons behind their proposed career paths. For example, some people are unsure about community pharmacy because it may not be clinical enough and then think about hospital pharmacy as an alternative. What I try to do is help them identify why they think it would be better and if they’re doing it for the right reasons, then I would help connect them to a hospital pharmacist for a different perspective.

At Monash, my lecturers were a big influence as quasi-mentors. They have been supportive with their opinions for some of my ideas and set me on the right path. Monash has given me many good opportunities. You don’t succeed on your own; it’s important to give something back to the University through mentoring your future peers.

I actually dislike the word mentor – it’s simply a supportive relationship.

Pharmacy is a profession where you may feel unrewarded because you might not receive a lot of positive reinforcement from patients. I try to instill into people that they’re doing good, valuable work and encourage them to be proud of their profession – many have had the same concerns that I had. A big focus for me is to improve the profession where possible and ensure its sustainability. Who knows, I may even go on to do a PhD.

Simon Furletti is a director of the Pharmacy Improvement Centre Ltd, a teaching associate in the Postgraduate Studies and Professional Development unit at Monash University, and a member of the Master of Clinical Pharmacy Course Advisory Committee.

Dr Carol Gee

Dr Carol Gee, BFormSci, class of 2006;PhD, 2011

For me, mentoring is a good way of going back and connecting with the University. I really enjoy it.

My previous role with Monash as a demonstrator, tutor and exam marker has helped me build a good foundation to be mentor. As someone who has been in their shoes, I know students have a lot of questions about their future career path.

As a formulation scientist, I reverse engineer a product currently selling on the shelves by a competitor to develop a generic version.

The purpose of this is to add value to an existing product and release it into the market as soon as the innovator patent expires. My day in the office involves equal time desk work and lab work but changes depending on the status of a project. It’s a challenging and dynamic role, as I'm constantly learning and doing different tasks every day. After all, the world of science of endless.

Dr Carol Gee is a formulation scientist at Pfizer. She has experience in parenteral product scale up to manufacture, and process development.