APhA Annual Meeting Recognizes College of Pharmacy Students, Alumni with Awards

By Benjamin Waldrum

The APhA-Academy of Student Pharmacists (ASP) awards and honors program is the most comprehensive recognition program for students in the profession of pharmacy.

“Both our students and alumni have a strong track record for exceptional professional advocacy, scholarship and patient care, which these awards affirm,” said Cindy Stowe, Pharm.D., dean of the College of Pharmacy. “Building a legacy of excellence begins during their time as students and continues on into their long and successful careers. I am so incredibly proud of all their accomplishments.”

The college’s APhA Academy of Student Pharmacists chapter was again recognized as the national Division AA Chapter of the Year, given to the most impactful of unique program in its division, based on enrollment. This is the eighth time UAMS has won in its division.

The student chapter was also named national runner-up for Operation Reproductive Health, which focuses on student outreach to provide health and wellness services focused on improving cancer prevention and reproductive and sexual health education.

For the project, students made “chemo care baskets” for patients at the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, created a lecture series on cancer health, painted pumpkins for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, created a social media campaign for World AIDS Day and educated 1,300 community members during Men’s Health Week.

“These awards recognize what people in Arkansas and around UAMS already realize: that our students are dedicated to improving the health of Arkansans,” said Chris Johnson, Pharm.D., M.Ed., the chapter’s lead faculty advisor. “Their desire to make an impact outside of the classroom is something to be emulated by the entire UAMS community, and they make us very proud.”

Third-year students Fatima Al-Doori and Kayla Matlock each received 2024 National Association of Nuclear Pharmacies (NANP) Outstanding Nuclear Pharmacy Student Scholarships. The scholarships typically are awarded to students who have completed nuclear pharmacy electives and show promise in the field through internships and rotations.

John Clay Kirtley, Pharm.D., COP ‘02, executive director of the Arkansas State Board of Pharmacy, received the Thomas E. Menighan Pharmacy Management Excellent Award. Menighan served as APhA CEO for 11 years and has founded or partnered in multiple companies with a variety of specialties in health care and access.

“Dr. Kirtley’s commitment and outstanding achievements in pharmacy are unparalleled, and he has distinguished himself as a leader in the profession,” said Brenda McCrady, P.D., assistant director of the Arkansas State Board of Pharmacy. “He works tirelessly in promoting, managing and improving the profession of pharmacy. Dr. Kirtley commits himself to supporting the management of pharmacy through his involvement in the many organizations that he gives, without hesitation, his time, expertise and support.”