Dr. David Belew’s parents bought their pharmacy in the 1960’s, and Belew Pharmacy is a staple of the North Knoxville community. David Belew – now the president of the chain – said some patients have been coming to it for more than four decades.
“I have people that will still come in and say, ‘I remember the day you were born,’” he said.
Those deep roots in the community have also led the company to partner with two KCS schools – Fulton High and Hardin Valley Academy – to offer students work-based learning opportunities.
Belew said the relationship began five or six years ago with Fulton’s health science program, and that one of those students is still working for Belew as their marketing director.
“It’s more than shadowing, because we do get them involved to any extent we can,” he said. “I want them to see everything that pharmacy can offer … From technicians to marketing to going on and advancing your education and getting a professional pharmacy degree.”
Nathan Fawver is a senior at Hardin Valley who is part of the school’s pharmacy pathway. He is hoping to become a physician, but his work as an intern at Belew has prepared him to take a pharmacy technician certification exam later this year.
Fawver said he has worked closely with Dr. Jamie Price, the pharmacy manager at Belew’s Broadway store, and has seen her establish relationships with the store’s customers.
“Whenever Jamie gets a medication, she always likes to quiz me on them,” he added. “So that kind of helps me learn about all the different medications.”
The KCS 865 Academies initiative aims to foster partnerships between local industries and district high schools, including opportunities for job shadowing and career exposure.
If your business is interested in getting involved, please visit knoxschools.org/academies for more information.
David Belew said the partnership has provided him with a new perspective on the business, including student insights about topics like social media: “By and large it’s unbelievably positive.”