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Victorian College of Pharmacy

Victorian College of Pharmacy

Dean:Professor Bill Charman
LocationParkville, Victoria, Australia
Affiliations:Monash University

The Victorian College of Pharmacy is the Parkville campus of Monash University, located in Victoria, Australia. It is a centre of research and teaching in the fields of pharmaceuticals and medicinal chemistry. It is particularly well known for its research in drug development and formulation science,[1] including the discovery and development of the world's first successful anti-influenza drug, Relenza.[2] The college/campus is made up of 4 buildings, the latest one being first occupied in 2007. The newest, fourth building is primarily a research building, to complement the college's strong research background. The campus is situated on Royal Parade in the suburb of Parkville, around 2km north of the Melbourne CBD. Royal Parade is home to a number of other research institutions, including the University of Melbourne, the CSIRO's Division of Health Sciences and the Royal Melbourne Hospital. Pharmaceutical company CSL Limited is also based in Parkville.

The campus offers courses in Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science. It requires high ENTER scores from Year 12 applicants, as the degrees are high demand courses. College of Pharmacy students can also take simultaneous degrees in commerce or engineering at Monash University's Clayton Campus. The College also offers postgraduate degrees by coursework or research, from graduate diploma through to PhD level.

The College currently has around 1100 students and around 140 staff. It is planning to expand its teaching to offer a Bachelor of Pharmacy at the University's Malaysia campus, which will commence in 2008.[3] The College is also exploring the possibilities of developing postgraduate pharmacy education at the University's South Africa campus.

The official faculty of pharmacy colour is a shade of light green.

The current Dean of the College is Professor Bill Charman.[4]



The Victorian College of Pharmacy is one of the oldest educational institutions in Australia. It was founded in 1881 as the School of the Pharmaceutical Society of Victoria. After being housed in various places in Melbourne, it moved to its present location in 1960. The move to Parkville was largely funded by the massive private donation of £25,000 by David Cossar.[5] At the time, this was the largest single donation to a pharmacy school in Australian history.[6] In its early years, the College was essentially run as a private institution, with the majority of its funding coming from tuition fees and the donations of benefactors. In 1967, the College reached an agreement with the Federal and State governments for it to receive government financial assistance. In 1974, fees for tertiary education in Australia were abolished, meaning that funding for the College began to be sourced primarily from the Federal Government.

After the introduction of the unified national system of higher education in 1988, known as the Dawkins reforms, it was clear that the College had to combine with a university. Negotiations were started with University of Melbourne, which was seen as the obvious partner, given their close proximity. However, these negotiations collapsed in 1990. The College then began discussions with Monash University, which were successful. The transfer was finalised on 1 July 1992 and the College is now the Faculty of Pharmacy of Monash University. It celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2006.


Domestic students must apply through the Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre to be considered entrance into the undergraduate degrees at Monash University.


  • Bachelor of Pharmacy - 4 years full time
  • Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Science (replaces BMedChem and BFormSci) - 3 years full time
  • Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Science/Bachelor of Engineering (conducted at Parkville and Clayton campuses) - 5 years full time
  • Bachelor of Pharmacy/Bachelor of Commerce (conducted at Parkville and Clayton campuses) - 4 years full time
  • Bachelor of Medicinal Chemistry (no new intakes, being phased out) - 3 years full time
  • Bachelor of Fomulation Science (no new intakes, being phased out) - 3 years full time


  • PhD
  • Master in Clinical Pharmacy
  • Wound Care

Deans and Directors

  • John Kruse (1882-1885)
  • Cuthbert Blackett (1886) (acting)
  • Alfred H. Jackson (1886-1889)
  • Sidney Plowman (1890-1891)
  • A.T.S. ‘Stan’ Sissons (1920-1962)
  • Nigel Manning (1963-1978)
  • Geoffrey Vaughan (1979-1987)
  • Robert Burnet (1987) (acting)
  • Colin Raper (1987) (acting)
  • Tom R. Watson (1988-1991)
  • Colin Chapman (1991-2006)
  • Bill Charman (2007-)


In teaching, the College now incorporates:

  • Department of Medicinal Chemistry
  • Department of Pharmaceutical Biology and Pharmacology
  • Department of Pharmaceutics
  • Department of Pharmacy Practice

Research Centres at the College include:

  • Centre for Drug Candidate Optimisation

Notable alumni

The College has produced a number of graduates who have become leaders in pharmaceutical and health sciences. Additionally, the College's alumni includes graduates who have become well-known in fields outside of science, including many politicians and senior public servants,[7] and national leaders such as Weary Dunlop.


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  • Janette Bomford, Victorian College of Pharmacy: 125 years of history, 1881-2006
  • H.V. Feehan, Birth of the Victorian College of Pharmacy
  • Louise Gray and Karen Stephens, Victorian College of Pharmacy: 125 stories for 125 years, 1881-2006
  • Geoffrey Hutton, The Victorian College of Pharmacy: an observer's view
  • Victorian College of Pharmacy, The Search for a partner : a history of the amalgamation of the Victorian College of Pharmacy and Monash University
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Victorian_College_of_Pharmacy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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