College Bids Well Wishes to Dr. Iqbal Khan

Iqbal Khan

A retirement celebration for Dr. Iqbal Khan, professor and assistant dean of the College of Pharmacy’s Southwest Georgia Clinical Campus, will be held Monday, March 20 from 1-2:00 pm at the college’s location in Albany.

Dr. Khan has served as assistant dean of CoP’s Albany campus since its opening in 2011. Along with this role, Dr. Khan worked in various leadership capacities for the Medical College of Georgia. He was the founding dean of MCG’s Southwest Campus in Albany and later served as the administrative director of the Office of Admissions at MCG in Augusta.

Prior to these appointments, Dr. Khan, a reproductive physiologist, served as director of undergraduate medical education in MCG’s department of Obstetrics and Gynecology from 1998-2005 and as director of the department’s IVF and Andrology laboratories from 1990-2002. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in physiology from the University of Karachi in Pakistan and his doctoral degree in reproductive physiology from the University of Gothenberg in Sweden. He has more than 50 reviewed journal articles and academic publications to his credit.

According to Dr. George Francisco, Dr. Khan has positioned pharmacy students to be a visible, respected force in the Albany medical community. “Dr. Kahn has been an advocate for our students, and he has been an excellent liaison with administrators at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, where our students do their rotations,” said Francisco. “In addition, he successfully guided our focused accreditation in Albany in 2012 and was a key leader during our comprehensive accreditation in 2016.”

Dr. Khan’s retirement reception is opened to everyone; please RSVP to Arica Barfield in Albany. [Above: Iqbal Khan]

Donella Moore Promoted to Senior Accountant

Donella Moore

Donella Moore has been promoted to senior accountant in CoP’s Business Affairs Office. Donella joined the College of Pharmacy in August 2015 as an accounting associate. She began work at UGA in July 2012 in OVPR’s Georgia Genomics Facility and later, she joined the staff in the Counseling and Human Development Office in the College of Education. In her new position, Donella will be responsible for financial transactions and payroll related to state and income accounts. Currently, she is attending the UGA FACTS leadership training program, and she serves as the president of the college’s PSRG. Congratulations, Donella, in your new role! [Above: Donella Moore]

Lead Dawg Awards Announced

Congratulations to Priyan Lad, ’18, president of AMCP; Katie Morgan, ’18, president of CPNP; Brielle Scutt, ’20, class representative; and Ashley Taylor, ’18, president of APhA-ASP and DSAC; who have been named 2017 Lead Dawgs for the College of Pharmacy. The Lead Dawg Award recognizes students who are leaders in the College of Pharmacy, the community and their profession. The four will receive travel funds to attend a professional meeting in the 2017-18 academic year, along with a certificate. Congrats! [Below: New Lead Dawgs are (l-r) Priyan Lad, Ashley Taylor, Katie Morgan and Brielle Scutt]

Lead Dawgs

Calling FORE All PharmDawgs!

Jowdy Golf

All Pharmdawgs are invited to join the college for the 25th annual Albert W. Jowdy Memorial Golf Classic on Friday, April 21. It will be a fun day to play 18 holes at the UGA Golf Course with College of Pharmacy alumni, students, friends, faculty, staff and retirees. All proceeds will benefit the Albert W. Jowdy Student Scholarships. Fees are $85 for pharmacy students, $130 for young alumni (under 30), and $135 for all others. Register online here. Questions? Contact: Kim Hamby, director of Alumni Affairs or call 706-542-4536. [Above, left to right: The late Dr. Albert W. Jowdy with Dean Svein Øie]

Rho Chi Inducts New Members

The Rho Chi Society inducted new members on Tuesday, March 14 at a ceremony held at the Georgia Center. Rho Chi is a national pharmacy honor society that recognizes academic excellence displayed by students of pharmacy. Eligible members must be a PharmD student in the upper 20 percent of his or her graduating class at the completion of at least half the didactic program leading to a degree in pharmacy. The new inductees are: Nathan Allen, Laura Ashcraft, Logan Chalmers, Haley Cook, Brian Croft, Andye Dawson, Gabby Do, Taylor Dominy, Samantha Earley, Dennia Ernest, Lauren Floris, Abby Hamlin, Kajal Jain, Elisa Jones, Timothy Jones, Katie Long, Ashley McLeod, Madalyn Motes, Anna Parker, Darshan Patel, Namita Patel, Elizabeth Rand, Kaitlyn Ray, Deana Rogers, Cathryn Schrader, Rachel Smith, Kathryn Tacy, Bao Van. [Below: Rho Chi Society]

Rho Chi

2017 Chu Lectureship Welcomes Inventor of Lipitor

Bruce D. Roth, the inventor of Lipitor, a popular cholesterol-lowering medication, will be the featured speaker at the UGA College of Pharmacy’s annual Chu Lectureship on Wednesday, March 29 at 11 a.m. in the college’s Pharmacy South Auditorium. Roth, who is the senior vice president of Small Molecule Drug Discovery at Genentech Research and Early Development, will present “The Discovery and Development of Lipitor: Would anyone make this molecule today?” A reception will precede the event at 10:30 a.m., and everyone is invited. For more information, contact Michael Bartlett.

Faculty Accolades and Honors

Dr. Scott Pegan has been representing our college in the field. He’s been in Maryland doing countermeasure research work for the U.S. Medical Institute for Chemical Defense and Edgewood Chemical Biological Center. He also gave a seminar titled "Structural insights of stereo specific inhibition of human acetylcholinesterase by VX and subsequent reactivation by Hi-6."

Dr. Jayana Jayawardhana

Kudos to Dr. Jayani Jayawardhana, who recently published a paper in Addictive Behaviors. Abraham, A.J., G. Bagwell-Adams, & J. Jayawardhana. (2017) "Availability of Tobacco Cessation Services in Substance Use Disorder Treatment Programs: Impact of State Tobacco Control Policy,” Addictive Behaviors.71, 12-17. To link to the entire paper, see here. [Above: Dr. Jayani Jayawardhana]

In addition, Dr. Jayawardhana recently was a grant reviewer for the National Institute of Health Special Emphasis Panel on “Health Services Organization and Delivery (HSOD)."

Dr. Marjorie Phillips

Dr. Marjorie Shaw Phillips, clinical professor of Pharmacy Practice (WOS) in Augusta, was the lead author of “Navigating the Institutional Review Board Process for Pharmacy-Related Research,” which was published in Hospital Pharmacy. Read the article here. [Right: Dr. Marjorie Phillips]

Dr. Eileen Kennedy recently published a paper in Nature Methods: “Genetically encoded biosensors for visualizing live-cell biochemical activity at super-resolution. Nature Methods, (2017) doi:10.1038/nmeth.4221. Briefly, the article states that compartmentalized biochemical activities are essential to all cellular processes, but there is no generalizable method to visualize dynamic protein activities in living cells at a resolution commensurate with cellular compartmentalization. In the article, the authors introduce a new class of fluorescent biosensors that detect biochemical activities in living cells at a resolution up to threefold better than the diffraction limit. The findings suggest that biochemical activities of the cell are spatially organized into an activity architecture whose structural and functional characteristics can be revealed by these new biosensors.


It’s a FACT! CoP is offering workshops on learner-centered instructional environments. The Faculty Achievement in Classroom Transformation (FACT) Grant Program, in partnership with UGA Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL), encourages faculty to explore and implement innovative approaches to teaching and learning across the PharmD program. A series of workshops are being offered that will support faculty in their efforts to create a learner-centered instructional environment that will engage students via collaboration, communication, critical thinking and problem solving. These workshops are being taught by members of our Instructional Design and Technology Office, along with staff from CTL. For a list of workshops and to register, see FACTS.

Students: The Heart of CoP

CPNP Hockey

Hats off to CPNP! The group raised $430 for the Autism Cares Foundation early this semester with a hockey event that never happened! Due to an uncooperative mother nature, the event was cancelled, but none-the-less, the group still raised these impressive funds. The hockey game fundraiser will become an annual event; here’s hoping it actually happens in 2018! Contact: Andrew Webb

A salute to the American Pharmacists Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists! The group is providing a worthy community service by hosting the Multicultural Health Fair at the Pendergrass Flea Market on Saturday, April 1st from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. The group will offer free blood glucose, blood pressure and BMI exams, along with patient education of many chronic illnesses. As a fundraiser for the event, the group is selling comfort-colored gray College of Pharmacy t-shirts for just $17. Place your order on this Google Doc and you can pay by Venmo or with a cash or check (Locker #61). Contact: Rami Zaabab

Rami Saabab

And speaking of APhA-ASP and Rami! CoP’s International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation of APhA-ASP participated in the national APhA video campaign to promote World Cancer Day. Featured in the video was our own Rami, P1, who helped spread awareness about the impact of pharmacy in treating these diseases and finding a cure for cancers worldwide. Kudos, Rami, on a job well done! [Right: Rami Saabab]

Reed Liggin

IN ADDITION! On Tuesday, March 21, during Org Hour (12:30 – 1:20 p.m.) in the Pharmacy South 101, APhA-ASP will host alumnus Reed Liggin, ’94, who will share his success story as the founder of RazorInsights, an entrepreneurial venture aimed at changing and improving the transfer of healthcare information technology for small community, rural and critical-access hospitals. His hard work earned him the #15 spot on the Bulldog 100 list of the fastest growing business by a UGA alum. In 2015, RazorInsights became a subsidiary of athenahealth, where Liggin now serves as vice president. [Above: Reed Liggin]

Red Out

FINALLY! APhA-ASP had a recent “red-out” to bring about awareness for cardiovascular disease. The group’s Operation Heart committee has as its mission to educate the community about the importance of heart health and heart related issues. True PharmDawgs--supporting good health AND the Bulldog Nation by wearing red! [Right: APhA Red-Out]

Our SNPhA chapter is busy promoting good health! Currently, ranked 6th out of 89 chapters in the nation, SNPhA has the following activities planned for next week in support of Chronic Kidney Disease:
3/21 Bake Sale: 10 a.m.-1:20 p.m., PS Lobby (cute kidney-shaped treats!)
3/23 Kidney Trivia: 12:30-1:20 p.m., PS Lobby
3/24 Kidney Grocery Bingo: 6:15-7:15 p.m., Morningside of Athens
Other SNPhA activities include:
3/21 HIV/AIDs Board Game, 12:30-1:20 p.m., PS Lobby
3/21 Diabetes Workshop for Pre-Pharmacy Students, 5 p.m., PS 230
Current pharmacy students will offer soon-to-be students a head start before Pharmacy School!
3/29 Wear PURPLE in support of Women’s Health! (Women’s Health Awareness Week, 3/27-31) Students, faculty, staff are urged to wear purple in support of Women’s Health. A group picture will be taken of all the purple people at a time to be announced!

Finally, SNPhA and CPNP currently are hosting Project Period, a feminine hygiene drive through March 31. Items will be donated to area homeless shelters. A collection box is in the PS Lobby.

Justin Moore at the Capitol

CoP’s Georgia Society of Health-System Pharmacists was well represented by P3 Justin Moore, when he attended the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Student Advocate Legislative Day at the Capitol in Washington, D.C. during spring break. Working with 50 other student pharmacists from across the country, Justin talked with senators and representatives about HB592/SB109 advocating for congressional support of Provider Status for Pharmacists. Georgia's own Representative Buddy Carter spoke to the group about the need for more pharmacists and students to take an active role in politics locally and nationally to advance the profession. [Above: Justin (rear/left) stands with students from other colleges in the Capitol]

Stella Katisi and Tosin Adelakun

Justin wasn’t alone in the Capitol City, however! P2s Tosin Adelakun and Stella Katisi were accepted into a Shot@life Summit with the United Nations and during the week, the two joined doctors, nurses and medical students in speaking and raising awareness with legislators for global immunizations. Great job, Tosin and Stella for your work in global health. [Right, l-r: Stella Katisi and Tosin Adelakun]

UGA PharmDawgs Step Up! A recent SNPhA step competition between UGA, Drake University, University of Missouri-Kansas City and St. Louis University, held in recognition of American Heart Month, proved that PharmDawgs can go the distance! The top three walkers from all the schools were students from UGA, and the top faculty stepper was our own Dr. Danielle Vitale, who came in fourth! The goal was for participants to log at least 10,000 steps for one week. Here’s the PharmDawg results: First place: Laura Ashcraft: 163,659 steps; second place: Shelby Rumker: 132,134 steps; third place: Stella Hur: 83,857 steps; Dr. Vitale: 78,238 steps! The top three steppers received a Chipotle gift card. Way to step up, SNPhA!

The Student Society of Pediatric Advocates, based at CoP in Augusta, has published the latest edition of their newsletter. Read here. Contact: Hilary Teibel

Our Stellar Staff

Biggest Loser Update! Three weeks into the contest, participants in CoP’s Biggest Losers contest have lost a total of 60.1 pounds, or the average weight of a 9-year-old boy, a leather arm chair, a punching bag or a Boxer (dog breed). Week 2’s Biggest Loser was Melissa Hunter, Business Affairs, who lost 6.5 pounds, and Week 3’s Biggest Loser was Donella Moore, Business Affairs, with a 5.3-pound weight loss. With 19 faculty and staff participating, the contest is being sponsored by the Pharmacy Staff Resource Group in an effort to promote health and wellness at the college.

Nominations for the 2016 College of Pharmacy Employee of the Year are now being accepted. The award recognizes a staff member who has made outstanding contributions to the college, and supported students, faculty and co-workers during the past year. The recipient will receive a $1,000 award, a personalized plaque and their name added to the permanent plaque. See the memo sent by Dean Svein Øie and the guidelines and nomination form. The deadline for nominations is Friday, March 31 by 5 p.m. For questions, contact Toni Phelabaum.

Pharm Dawg Alum News

There are some exciting alumni updates to report!

Dr. Chris McCurdy, ’98, is the current president of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists. Dr. McCurdy, who studied under Dr. Warren Beach, is a professor at the University Florida College of Pharmacy. See his current bio here.

Dr. Stephen Cutler, ‘84, is the new dean of the South Carolina School of Pharmacy. See the announcement about his appointment here.

Calendar of Events

3/21: APhA Speaker Reed Liggin, '94--12:30-1:20 p.m., PS101
Vice president, athenahealth; founder, RazorInsights

3/22: PBS Research Seminar--11 am, PS 101*
Dr. Keith Wilkinson, professor and vice chair, Department of Biochemistry, Emory University School of Medicine Contact Megan Morgan

3/29: Chu Lectureship--11 am, Pharmacy South Auditorium
Bruce D. Roth, the inventor of Lipitor, a popular cholesterol-lowering medication, will be the featured speaker. Contact Michael Bartlett

Looking Ahead--Save the date and mark your calendars!

4/11: Pinning Ceremony--6:30-8:30 p.m., Classic Center (invitation required)
Contact Renee Dobbs

4/13: Thank-A-Donor Day--9 a.m.-1 p.m., Tate Plaza
The sixth annual UGA Thank-A-Donor Day provides students with a great opportunity to thank generous donors who have provided funds for scholarships, facilities, programs and services at UGA. All students are asked to stop by Tate to participate in one of the many ways to thank a donor. See here for details.

4/21: 5th Annual Jowdy Golf Tournament, UGA Golf Course
Contact Kim Hamby, director of Alumni Affairs, (706) 542-4536, or follow the Facebook page.

4/27-28: Southeastern Residency Conference--Classic Center
Pharmacy residents and graduate students make formal presentations on projects or research; exchange information and ideas with colleagues; discuss issues confronting institutional practice; and develop intra-professional relationships. See SERC for details.
Contact: Elise Martin

4/27: PBS Research Day--11 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Georgia Center, K/L
Dr. G. Venketeshwaran, ’97, executive director of Biologics for Merck and Dr. Stacy Brown, ’02, associate professor, East Tennessee State University College of Pharmacy, will be the keynote speakers. Awards will be presented.
Contact: Michael Bartlett

4/28: Senior Banquet--6:30-8:30 p.m., Classic Center (invitation required)
Contact: Renee Dobbs

4/29: College of Pharmacy Commencement--2-4:00 p.m., UGA Performing Arts Center Limited seating/invitation required
Contact: Renee Dobbs

5/5: BSPS Graduation Ceremony--2-4:00 p.m., Pharmacy South, Room 201
Contact: Robyn Malone

*For a list of all PBS Seminars this semester, see here.

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