Photo courtesy of Pharmakon.
For fourth year PharmD student Jesse Ropat, music has always been a huge part of his life. In the midst of pharmacy school, work, and a pandemic, Ropat has managed to continue writing and recording, a vocation that was recently highlighted by notable CBC Radio program Big City Small World.
“This was such an unexpected surprise,” said Ropat. “I had no idea that a song I wrote years ago in my bedroom would be discovered and shared like this.”
The song, ‘Change My Mind’, was posted on Ropat’s bandcamp in 2019 along with a series of other indie-pop and hip hop tracks he has been working on over the years. Unbeknownst to Ropat, CBC Radio host Errol Nazareth stumbled upon the track and added it to his Saturday afternoon show, blasting it out to listeners across the province.
Since its first spin on Big City Small World, Ropat’s ‘Change My Mind’ has made its rounds, appearing two more times, most recently on CBC’s Windsor Morning with Tony Doucette.
“My musical inspirations have definitely grown since I wrote ‘Change My Mind,’” said Ropat, who has been focusing on finetuning his production skills during the pandemic. “I challenged myself to make a different beat every day since all of this began, and am definitely seeing progress.”
Much like Ropat’s musical inspirations, his pharmacy career aspirations have also transitioned over the past couple years.
“Early on in my rotations, I was interested in working in hospitals, but as I’ve progressed in my learning and gained more experience, I’ve found my interests shift towards supporting community organizations,” he said.
Embracing this new found interest, Ropat is currently the medical team lead at Community Living Toronto, an organization that offers support for people in the disability sector throughout the GTA.
“Right now, the team is working on procedures to rollout the COVID-19 vaccine to our community members, as well as offering pandemic related educational supports on top of everyday services,” said Ropat. “I’ve had the opportunity to work on a wide range of projects that benefit so many people. It’s been an amazing experience.”
With one more rotation to go for his APPE rotations, Ropat looks forward to beginning his career as a pharmacist, and sees new opportunities to apply his skills.
“I really like the idea of working as part of an interprofessional team that can make a positive impact on different communities,” he said. “I think pharmacists can bring a lot of value to these roles, and I’m looking forward to getting started.”
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