Pharmacist Leader September 2017

lynda welage headshotDear Alumni and Friends,

I'm very excited for this school year, my first as Dean of the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy. The semester is off to a great start, and I'm proud to share that we have another exceptional class of incoming students (you can learn more about them in the Class of 2021 Snapshot, below).

I am also very eager to meet with more of our alumni and practitioners and hear your thoughts on the college and the practice in Minnesota. Over the next several months, I will be traveling around the state to meet as many people as I can.

One of my top goals as Dean is to work with you to develop new and enhance existing partnerships to further practice transformation and meet the health care needs of all Minnesotans, particularly those in rural and underserved areas. I'd also like to continue to build momentum in advancing our innovative models of education, and new discoveries and translational research.

I will share the dates of these get-togethers as the details are confirmed. Please watch for an invitation soon in your inbox, and join us if your schedule allows.

I look forward to meeting with you, and listening and learning to achieve our shared vision for the College of Pharmacy.

You may have heard this from me before, but it bears repeating: I am honored to have been selected to serve as Dean of one of the very best pharmacy schools in the nation. I hope you also take great pride in your College of Pharmacy.

Best wishes,
Lynda S. Welage, Dean

Class of 2021Class of 2021: A Snapshot

This year, the college received 624 applications and admitted 168 students in its Pharm.D. Professional Program (60 in Duluth, 108 in the Twin Cities). Here's a look at this year's incoming class:

Average GPA: 3.4
Average Science GPA: 3.27
Average PCAT Composite: 78%
Bachelor's degree or higher completed: 92%
Master's or doctoral degree completed: 4%
77% Minnesota residents
10% international students
Average of 22 months paid healthcare experience
61% female, 39% male
Average age: 25
43% attended the University of Minnesota
42% speak two or more languages

Homecoming 2017Join Us For Homecoming Oct. 20-21

On Friday, Oct. 20, the annual Back to School Day will be held for Golden Reunion class of '67, Silver Reunion classes '92 and '93, and special guest alums from classes '41-'66. On Saturday, Oct. 21, all are invited to a pre-game reception from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at McNamara Alumni Center prior to the Homecoming football game with Minnesota facing Illinois. For more information on Homecoming activities, contact Jason Varin at 612-626-8734 or

AACP meeting 2017CoP Shines At AACP Meeting

The college had a significant presence at July's American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) Annual Meeting in Nashville. The college won the 2017 Award of Excellence in Experiential Education, and a poster sponsored by the college and Regis University was named best SAS Poster. Others recognized at AACP include:

Incoming Officers:
Angela Birnbaum, chair, Graduate Education Special Interest Group (SIG)
Kerry Fierke, chair-elect, Leadership Development SIG
Shannon Reidt, chair, Geriatric Pharmacy SIG
Jean Moon, secretary, Women Faculty SIG
Retiring Officer:
Todd Sorensen, immediate past chair, Council of Faculties and Member, AACP Board of Directors
Amy Pittenger, immediate past chair, Academic Affairs Committee
Walmart Scholars and Mentors:
Anthony Olson & Jon Schommer
Stephanie Swanson & Todd Sorensen
Bethany Von Hoff & Keri Hager

Lucinda MaineLucinda Maine Will Receive Alumni Service Award

A 1985 graduate of the college's Kellogg Pharmaceutical Clinical Scientist Ph.D. program, Lucinda Maine will receive the U of M Alumni Service Award. The award recognizes her service to the college and the U, and to the profession of pharmacy. U of M President Eric Kaler will confer the award at the Alumni Association's gala celebratory event during Homecoming Week on Oct. 19. Read more

MPhA 2017Celebrating Leaders at MPhA

At the Minnesota Pharmacists Assocation Annual Learning Networking Event held earlier this month, Denise Frank (CoP mentor) received the Bowl of Hygeia award for her outstanding record of civic leadership in her community, Laura Palombi (CoP faculty) received the Cardinal Generation Rx award in recognition of her work to raise awareness of the dangers of prescription drug abuse, Anjoli Punjabi (CoP alum) received the Excellence in Innovation award for her innovative pharmacy practice resulting in improved patient care, and Todd Sorensen (CoP faculty) received the Harold R. Popp Award, which is the highest honor bestowed by the association.

Steven SimesonAlumnus Steven Simenson Receives Outstanding Achievement Award

Steven Simenson, a 1977 BPharm graduate and CEO and managing partner of Goodrich Pharmacy, Inc., received the Outstanding Achievement Award, which is the U's highest non-degree honor. Simenson was recognized for his innovation in pharmacy practice, and his leadership in his community and pharmacy in both Minnesota and nationally. Read more

To Really SeeArt Exhibit Developed By Faculty Explores Medication Use

The "To Really See: Exploring the Medication Taking Experience Through Art" exhibit explores medication use stories through artwork, with the goal to raise awareness and challenge mental health stigma regarding the medication-taking experience.The exhibit was developed by Professor Paul Ranelli in partnership with RESOURCE, Hennepin County Library, St. Luke's  Hospital, and Genoa. The exhibit is currently at the Hennepin County Library-Minneapolis Central through Sept. 27. A closing night panel discussion will be held at 6 p.m. on Sept. 27. The exhibit then moves to Duluth and will be on display at St. Luke's Hospital from October until April 2018. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, Nov. 9, 5-7:30 p.m. at St Luke's, 915 E 1st St. in Duluth. More information

Supporting Students Through ScholarshipsSupporting Students Through Scholarships

You can brighten the future of Minnesota pharmacists by making a gift in support of today's pharmacy students at the college. Your online gift will provide student scholarships as well as program support such as our pace-setting initiatives advancing pharmacy practice. Thank you on behalf of the entire college.