UTHSC College of Pharmacy Student Organizations Have Winning History

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The UTHSC chapter of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association received several awards at the national convention in July.

The student organization chapters in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center have repeatedly been recognized for excellence. This year has been no exception.

At the Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA)/National Pharmaceutical Association (NPhA) national convention held in Atlanta in July, the college’s chapter took home numerous prizes, including the Rite Aid/Chauncey I. Cooper Chapter Excellence for Best Chapter of the Year. This is the second time in three years the chapter has received this award and marks the 10th time overall the SNPhA chapter has received this distinction.

“I am so proud of our students,” said Tyler Kiles, PharmD, BC-ADM, assistant professor in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Translational Sciences and SNPhA chapter adviser. “They worked very hard on achieving this award, and I am so happy to share that they not only showed up, but also showed out at the national convention.”

In addition, SNPhA received several chapter awards including first-place honors in the scrapbook competition, three second-place awards for student initiatives (Bridging the Gap, Operation Immunization, and Project Keepsake – Chronic Kidney Disease), and three third-place awards for student efforts, including their mental health, fighting diabetes, and Power to End Stroke initiatives.

Two SNPhA student members also won awards in the student research poster presentation, including third place for Keuna Truitt (P3), who also received a scholarship and first-place for Kelsey Long (P3) and co-presenter Racheal McCreight (P4). P3 student Mecca Gordon also was a scholarship recipient.

“Winning this chapter award shows that we have the best of the best students training at UTHSC to enter the pharmacy profession,” said Marie Chisholm-Burns, former dean of the college. “They worked very hard, and I am so glad they are being recognized for their hard work and dedication.”

While SNPhA is the College of Pharmacy’s latest success, other student organizations have also been honored with similar chapter distinctions. For instance, the UTHSC American Pharmacists Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists (APhA-ASP) chapter was named as the 2020-2021 Chapter of the Year at the 2022 APhA-ASP annual meeting held in March in San Antonio. The chapter was recognized for its attention to detail in policy, patient care, professionalism, and chapter operations. This was the sixth time the chapter has received this honor.

The UTHSC chapter of the American Pharmacists Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists received the 2020-2021 Chapter of the Year distinction at the 2022 APhA-ASP annual meeting in March.

The college’s Rho Chi Honor Society, which seeks universal recognition of its members as lifelong intellectual leaders in pharmacy, received recognition as Best Chapter of the Year in 2019 and was bestowed with the Chapter Proposal Project Award in 2021. Members of the College of Pharmacy fraternal organization Kappa Psi and leadership society Phi Lambda Sigma have also received prestigious scholarships in recognition of their outstanding leadership, outreach, and research.

Jennifer Schoelles, PharmD, associate dean for student affairs, said student organizations are designed to help student pharmacists grow, connect, and gain skills that will help them in their pharmacy careers.

“Our many student organizations provide great opportunities for students to learn leadership and networking skills that will help them throughout their lives and careers,” Dr. Schoelles said. “From professional organizations to fraternities and honor societies, all of these groups are vital in helping equip students for success outside the classroom.”