The Southeastern Pharmacy Residency Conference (SERC) was the first of what are now over fourteen regional residency conferences in the nation. This unique program was conceived by giants in the profession including pharmacy/residency directors Fred Eckel (University of North Carolina), Chuck King (University of Alabama at Birmingham), Bob Lantos (Shands/University of Florida), and University of Georgia faculty member Stoney King. Mr. Eckel’s idea to bring together the cutting edge concepts of hospital pharmacy practice through residency training culminated in the first conference on January 24, 1970 in Athens, Georgia. Having only 20 registrants from Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina, at the first conference, the program has experienced sizable and important growth over five decades. In 2019, the 50th Annual Southeastern Pharmacy Residency Conference drew together over 550 attendees, including 335 residents from across the southeast presenting their research. Although residency training was focused on hospital practice in the past, today’s residents train in a variety of settings including complex health care systems, managed care, and community practice. Many individuals who first attended during their residency or graduate training now return year after year with their own residents. Pharmacy residents and preceptors from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee are invited to participate.
The Southeastern Residency Conference is very proud of its distinctive history and its inspiration for subsequent conferences focused on the learning, outcomes and successes of residency education in pharmacy practice. The real history of this conference is written in the careers of those who have attended, learned something about the scientific method, learned to give a formal presentation before an audience of strangers, made friends, developed contacts, and spent their lives helping patients make better use of their medicines.