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UTHSC College of Pharmacy Achieves Top 20 Rank in Research Funding from National Institutes of Health

A strategic effort to grow its research enterprise has landed the UTHSC College of Pharmacy a top 20 ranking in NIH funding among U.S. colleges of pharmacy. (Photo by Jay Adkins)

The College of Pharmacy at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center is now ranked in the top 20 in annual research funding from the National Institutes of Health, according to a new listing published by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy of its 141 member institutions.

The UTHSC College of Pharmacy also is ranked number 17 among 140 colleges of pharmacy in the country by U.S. News & World Report.

The ranking for research funding, an increase from number 23 last year, puts the UTHSC College of Pharmacy in the top 20 in two important measures of excellence for colleges of pharmacy. UTHSC’s College of Pharmacy is ranked at number 17 among 140 colleges of pharmacy in the country by U.S. News & World Report, based on its annual survey of academics at peer institutions.

NIH funding is highly competitive and a top 20 ranking is widely recognized as a benchmark of scientific excellence. NIH funding has grown in the college from approximately $3 million in 2011 to its current amount of approximately $8 million.

“To be ranked number 20 in NIH funding among colleges of pharmacy in the United States is a tremendous accomplishment,” said Marie Chisholm-Burns, PharmD, MPH, MBA, FCCP, FASHP, FAST, dean of the UTHSC College of Pharmacy. “I know many thought I was a little delusional for trying to lead us to this distinction -­ maintaining our U.S. News & World Report ranking while drastically improving our NIH ranking. It is no small task, for sure, but we have seen the fruits of our hard work over the last five years.

Dean Marie Chisholm-Burns has directed the research expansion.

“We did this while providing excellent education,” she continued. “Students benefit from having a rich research environment as they learn cutting-edge medical knowledge from top pharmacy leaders and scientists in the field.”  Dr. Chisholm-Burns, an NIH-funded researcher, a clinician, and the recipient of the highest pharmacy teaching award in the country, the Robert K. Chalmers Distinguished Pharmacy Educator Award, is committed to leading the UTHSC College of Pharmacy to excel in all areas of its mission.

During the last few years, the College of Pharmacy has advanced in NIH funding from a ranking in the high 30’s. The growth has been a strategic effort to emphasize excellence in research, scholarship, service, and teaching among all faculty, as the college educates and trains the next generation of pharmacists and scientists.