SPOKANE, Wash.—Thursday, May 4, the Washington State University College of Pharmacy celebrated the accomplishments of four Ph.D. and 92 Doctor of Pharmacy graduates at its 2017 Commencement Ceremony. Faculty, family and friends gathered at the Fox Theater in downtown Spokane to honor the newly minted alumni of the college.

Commencement Reception American Pharmacist Association CEO Tom Menighan gave the keynote address and urged the graduates to find their passion within pharmacy.

“Those who build connections and continue their lifelong learning will excel,” he said.

Menighan urged the graduates to let the encouragement they get from their peers to fuel their courage to take the “flying leaps” that will advance their careers and make the positive change they want to see in the pharmacy profession.

He challenged the graduates to practice at the top of their license, which means to continually seek new responsibilities and ways to challenge the stereotype of what a pharmacist does in order to show how a pharmacist can contribute to the health and wellness of individuals and communities.

“Patients need more than the knowledge we staple to a bag. They need your coaching to gain the knowledge, skills and performance necessary to improve lifelong outcomes. You can fill that need. Our job is to help accelerate that change,” he said.

Tom Menighan networking with student pharmacist Menighan offered leadership insights to the graduates including show up, get connected, be persistent, stay engaged, and to serve with gratitude.

“Today, I am proud to call you fellow pharmacists,” said Menighan. “Thank you in advance for what you will do to improve health care in America.”

Senior awards were given out at a special luncheon the previous day, following the commencement rehearsal. The 2017 Doctor of Pharmacy student awardees were:

  • Courtney Mayo: APhA-ASP Senior Recognition
    For the greatest contribution to advancing pharmacy profession through outstanding service to American Pharmacist Association-Associated Student Pharmacists.
  • Teri Lopez and Derek Matlock: WSU College of Pharmacy Faculty Award
    For outstanding grades, membership and participation in pharmacy organizations, and work characteristics as evidenced in the laboratory, classes and internships.
  • Andrew Pascal: Lilly & Co. Achievement Award
    For superior scholastic achievement in the professional curriculum; leadership qualities; strong professional attitude.
  • Carl Manhardt: Natural Medicines Recognition
    For exhibited interest and expertise related to natural medicines, including efforts to minimize adverse effects due to inappropriate use and to encourage evidence-based approach to natural medicines.
  • Cody Ray: TEVA Pharmaceuticals USA Outstanding Student
    For excellence in the study of pharmacy.
  • Courtney Mayo: Facts and Comparisons Excellence in Clinical Communication Award
    For being in the top 25% of the class and demonstrating superior verbal and written clinical communication skills.
  • Alyssa Sun and Parminder Sekhon: Merck Award for Outstanding Students
    For two students with highest GPA in the class.
  • Jeffry Crouch: Mylan Pharmaceuticals Excellence in Pharmacy
    For being in top 25% of the class and demonstrating high professional motivation and the intent to enter practice upon graduation.
  • Hope Tran: Larry G. Bettesworth Health System Pharmacy Student Award from Providence Health Care Foundation in Spokane
    For a graduating pharmacist interested in pursuing continued training in a health-system pharmacy residency.

[Lori J. Maricle] 5/8/17