University of Southern California School of Pharmacy Brings Regulatory Science Classes to Bay Area

Published: Jul 06, 2012

July 5, 2012 -- Starting this fall, the University of Southern California School of Pharmacy will offer core Regulatory Science courses in San Francisco. USC Regulatory Science North will enable Bay Area residents to take master’s degree and graduate certificate classes from one of the global leaders in this increasingly vital field, now at a convenient location in Mountain View, Calif. These courses provide invaluable insight into the regulatory and legal issues facing the life sciences in the 21st century. Courses will be offered on weekends to accommodate students’ busy professional schedules.

The biomedical industry has grown rapidly, and this has fueled a large — and largely unmet — demand for regulatory professionals, both nationally and internationally. “The structure of the pharmaceutical industry is globalizing, and fast,” says Professor Frances J.R. Richmond, PhD, director of the Regulatory Science Program and the International Center for Regulatory Science at the USC School of Pharmacy. “Meanwhile, each country can require that a company satisfy a regionally specific set of tests, which greatly complicates global marketing.”

The USC Regulatory Science program arose to meet this growing need. “We desperately need a new generation of regulatory scientists, formulation engineers, GMP experts and reimbursement specialists,” Richmond adds. “Without these experts, we hobble the competitiveness of our industry.”

USC’s program serves both full- and part-time students interested in enhancing their knowledge of regulatory affairs, clinical research and quality systems. The result is trailblazing professionals who will meet industry and governmental challenges in speeding up the delivery of medical advances to the people who need them while ensuring that safety standards are met.

The USC School of Pharmacy is ideally poised to prepare students for success, as home to one of the nation’s oldest and largest regulatory science programs, as well as the world’s first doctorate in the field. Both students and industry also benefit from the International Center for Regulatory Science, which provides leadership and shares information on these matters with colleagues and institutions around the world. Domestically, the center aids companies in understanding and improving best practices to expedite their FDA submissions. So students can be confident they are learning what works in practice and not just in theory.

“USC Regulatory Science graduates are in great demand among top industry employers,” notes Professor Richmond. “We are excited about expanding and partnering with Bay Area pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device firms to bring new opportunities to students and professionals in Northern California.”

The center’s San Francisco offerings begin with two core courses: Introduction to Medical Product Regulation, an overview of the profession that examines how agencies and companies interrelate, and Structure and Management of Clinical Trials, which focuses on real-life clinical situations and challenges. The latter course includes a distance-learning module.

Classes are open to those who have not yet been admitted to a formal program, and credit for all coursework will apply to the master’s or certificate programs if students decide to pursue a degree or certificate. Courses at the Mountain View location will be offered throughout the year. Spring classes will cover regulation of drugs and medical devices, while the summer course will address quality assurance issues. The program’s wide array of online courses also will be available to Bay Area students, who will have the opportunity to create a hybrid education plan suited to their individual needs.

Additional information on the program can be found at


Main Office Phone: 323-442-3521

About the USC School of Pharmacy

The USC School of Pharmacy is a nationally recognized as an innovative, progressive pharmacy school, playing a key leadership role in the advancement of the pharmacy profession. Its cutting-edge research enterprise is internationally known, especially for work focusing on the design, discovery, targeting and delivery of novel therapeutics and on pharmacoeconomics. The USC School of Pharmacy is home to the USC International Center for Regulatory Science and a partner in the Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics at USC. To learn more, please visit

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