It is amazing how fast the current academic year has gone by, it just seems a few moments ago it was August. This May is an exciting time in the College that brings mixed feelings. We are very excited that our Class of 2013 students will be starting their advanced pharmacy practice experiences where they will have the chance to utilize their pharmacy knowledge, skills and abilities in providing patient care in various practice settings in collaboration with their preceptors over the next year followed by their graduation in May 2013. Our excitement is tempered somewhat by a sense of sadness in knowing that we will not see them around the College. These last few years have been a great time in the College as this group of talented and dedicated student pharmacists have worked to advance student programs, pharmacy care and to mentor their friends in the Classes of 2014 and 2015. This is the first time the College will have all of our students out on rotations with the Class of 2014 students conducting their introductory rotations in institutional pharmacy settings and our Class of 2015 conducting their introductory rotations in community settings. Our pharmacy practice faculty members have been working extremely hard to ensure that their clinical sites are ready for students who will be working with them to provide clinical care and service to patients starting in May. A special thanks to our Office of Experiential Education, under the leadership of Dr. Jim Krebs, who has been working extremely hard to ensure our students have outstanding experiential rotations during each year. In addition, we remain very appreciative for all of you who also precept our students in your practice site. Our experiential education program would not be possible without your time and dedicated efforts to advance pharmacy practice and to mentor these students.
So many exciting events have happened during this last few months. I will highlight only a few, but am always willing to share with you via e-mail, phone or in person more details about the various activities that are listed below:
- April 6, 2012 – The First Annual Mr. Pharmacist Competition was sponsored in the College by the Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA). Mr. Richard Agbotoko was selected to receive this recognition. Proceeds from this event were given to the Make a Wish Foundation.
- April 19, 2012 – Faculty and volunteers participate in a program to provide “mock” interviews for interested students in the Class of 2013. This program was coordinated by Dr. John Redwanski and Mr. Jeff Nevers, Career Services Coordinator Portland Campus. As a note, we will be having a career fair this fall and more information will be available later or give my office a call (207-221-4500).
- April 20, 2012 – The Delta Zeta Chapter of Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS), the National Pharmacy Leadership Society, was chartered in the College of Pharmacy at a great ceremony held at the Portland Regency Hotel. Fifty-seven charter members including student members, faculty members and honorary members were inducted and recognized for their leadership in Pharmacy. A special thanks to the Officers and Advisors in this Chapter. The Advisors for the Detla Zeta Chapter are Dr. Devon Sherwood and Dr. Leslie Ochs. The Officers are President Jaimini Patel, Vice-President Health Stewart, Treasurer Cecilia Hui, Secretary Michelle O’Meara, Historian Eunice Boo and GAPSA Liaison Jason Boyce. The Initiation Committee members were Justin Leveque (Chair), Tamkeen Quraishi Abreu, Joanne Hwang, John Kim as the Chapter Officers. Thank you all for making this event a wonder evening that will be long-remembered in the history of the College.
- April 21, 2012 – The Second Annual Half-Way Charity Gala was held at the Holiday Inn by the Bay. This was a wonderful evening of food, beverage, magic and dancing to a live jazz band that was enjoyed by students, their families, faculty, staff, preceptors and members of the community all with the celebrating another success year and the half-way point for the Class of 2014 as well as raising money for the Maine Cancer Foundation. A special thanks to the members of the Class of 2014 who made this possible, guided by the leadership and hard work of Garlic Jones, Michelle O’Meara, Lauren Gray, Thuan Vu, Justin Leveque, Tyla Hagen, Kyle Reilly and Megan Trafton.
- April 26, 2012 – The College of Pharmacy held its 3rd Annual Awards and Honors Ceremony in the Finley Gymnasium. Speaker of Maine House of Representatives Robert Nutting provided the opening remarks for this celebration of student scholarship recipients, student leadership and academic awards, preceptor of the year, pharmacist of the year, service appreciation award, research technician award, teacher(s) of the year, mentor of the year and staff excellence. Special thanks to Dr. Wes Zemrak, Renee Gravell and the College of Pharmacy Awards Committee for all their efforts in making this program a success and a night to be remembered. We would also like to thank our many sponsors Goold Health Systems, SuperValu Pharmacies, Rite Aid Pharmacy, National Association of Chain Drug Stores Foundation, Hannaford, Bill and Gloria Miller, Walgreens and CVS/pharmacy. We are truly thankful for this continued and generous support.
- April 28, 2012 – A Drug Take Back Event was held at the College of Pharmacy Building, the Saco Community Center and the Scarborough Police Department. Over 50 student members of the American Pharmacists Association – Academy of Students of Pharmacy (APhA-ASP) and 6 faculty members, Dr. Meghan Sullivan, Dr. Leslie Ochs, Dr. Lisa Pagnucco, Dr. Matt Lacroix, Dr. George Allen and Dr. Erin Koepf, provided an opportunity for the public to bring back unused drugs for safe disposal.
- April 27-29, 2012 – We had numerous faculty members and students involved with the Maine Pharmacy Association Spring Meeting in Freeport Maine. The College of Pharmacy is very proud the leadership that Dr. Kenneth ‘Mac’ McCall in his role as President of the MPA has provided over the last several years. It is great to see the growth of this organization and its role in advancing pharmacy and pharmacy practice across the state.
The College remains very appreciative of the support from the many individuals who serve as preceptors, interviewers or friends of the College through our annual campaign. If you are interested in serving as a preceptor or interviewer or just to learn more about the College and our activities, please give my office a call at 207-221-4500 or send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would very much like the opportunity to visit with you and tell you more about our activities in the College. Finally, information about our College’s Annual Campaign which supports student scholarships, travel and research can be found at http://www.une.edu/pharmacy/giving.cfm. I would like to leave you with a quote by Edwin Way Teale who reminds us that “The world’s favorite season is the spring. All things seem possible in May.” Dream big and enjoy your own marvelous month!