Meet our Students

Read profiles of students and recent graduates to find out what it's like to be a PharmD student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy. Their profiles highlight unique leadership and educational opportunities, as well as their commitment to improving their communities.

Anthony Culbertson: Leadership skills for life

Anthony CulbertsonAnthony Culbertson,’22, who attended the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Duluth, found the Leadership Emphasis Area (LEA) program to be an indispensable part of his education.

Jenna Puttkammer: A passion for community and closing gaps

 Jenna PuttkammerJenna Putkammer is in the fourth year of her PharmD program at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Duluth, and is completing a five month rotation at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

Emily Tran: Diverse experiences generate passion and impact

Emily TranOriginally from Orange County, California, Emily Tran is a fourth-year PharmD student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Duluth. Before pharmacy school, Tran completed her undergraduate program at the University of California, Irvine, with a double major in biological studies and Spanish.

Ayan Mohamed, Idil Ibrahim Mohamed and Shukri Mohamed: Class of 2024

Ayan Mohamed left; Idil Mohamed center; Shukri Mohamed rightFor first-year students Ayan Mohamed, Shukri Mohamed and Idil Ibrahim Mohamed, the College of Pharmacy's Drugs of Abuse course allowed them to use those tools to pursue multiple areas of interest.

Julia Rumley: Class of 2021

Headshot of Julia Rumley smiling against a golden backdrop Julia Rumley, a graduate of the Class of 2021 talks about her experience at the College of Pharmacy and several activities and initiatives that had an impact. 

Patty Maglalang: Class of 2021

Head shot of Patty MaglalangPatty Maglalang, a graduate in the Class of 2021 talks about her experience at the College of Pharmacy and what's next for her.

Eva Carlson: Class of 2022

Eva Carlson standing in front of a brick building with fall-colored vine leaves in the background Eva Carlson has a passion for advocacy and legislative work which has been stimulated through her experience with the medication repository at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Twin Cities. Now in her third year at the college, this native of Burnsville, Minnesota, has had a winding path to pharmacy.

Tianna Perosino: Class of 2023

Tianna PerosinoMotivated by the experience of watching her late father struggle with the medications he had to take for his chronic pain, Tianna Perosino is working toward a career where she can help people like her dad.

Hoa Bui: Class of 2020

Hoa BuiHoa Bui is a first generation Vietnamese-American who wants to help people have a quality and non-judgemental health care experience. The experiences of her parents and grandparents are why she’s pursuing a career in pharmacy. 

Ariel Clark: Class of 2021

Ariel Clark

Daughter of a Military Family, Motivated to Help Veterans

Born in Long Beach, California, Ariel Clark, is the daughter of a military family and a PharmD student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Duluth. Clark is currently working on a suicide prevention program for her leadership emphasis area project, with the hope that it will help everyone including veterans.

Jessica Raines: Class of 2020

Jessica RainesEternally Grateful

A Minnesota girl through and through, Jessica Raines hopes her experiences at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy will help her lead a long successful career at a rural community hospital somewhere in the state. 

Josiah Allen: Class of 2022

Josiah Allen

Juggling All That Life Has to Offer

Managing life as a student can be difficult. If you add being a husband, father and business owner on top of the demands of being a student, it wouldn’t be surprising if one found that overwhelming. Not Josiah Allen, though. As a class of 2022 student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, Allen is thriving with this exact scenario. 

Carolyn O'Donnell: Class of 2020

Carolyn O'Donnell

From Music to Pharmacy: Taking Every Opportunity Along the Way

It’s never too late to become a pharmacy student. This is the main impression one has after learning about Carolyn O’Donnell’s educational journey. O’Donnell had a degree in music business and the entertainment industries from the University of Miami. She was working in the music industry before she changed career trajectories. Today, she’s an award-winning pharmacy student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy’s Duluth campus and is slated to graduate in May 2020. 

Hannah Berg: Class of 2021

Hannah Berg

Gaining Experience In and Out of the Classroom

Hannah Berg, a native of Mound, Minnesota, started her pharmacy journey at Ohio State University, where she earned a bachelor’s in pharmaceutical sciences. Before attending Ohio State, Berg wasn’t interested in pharmacy. She was just a girl who enjoyed growing up on a lake. The coursework of her degree intrigued her, though, and she decided to pursue pharmacy. 

Prosperity Eneh: Class of 2017

Prosperity Eneh

Evaluating Drug-Drug Interaction for People Living with HIV

Prosperity Eneh, a student at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, attended the 10th International Aids Society Conference on HIV Sciences in July where she presented her work on evaluating drug-drug interaction potential during hospital stay for people living with HIV and suspected cryptococcal meningitis. 

Caitlin Albrecht and Caroline Patz: Learning Overseas - An APPE in Germany

Students (l-r) Elise Muench, Jochen Pfiefer, Caitlin Albrecht, Caroline Patz and Andy Yip with their German instructorsAn APPE in Germany

Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPE) are essential aspects of the PharmD program. One way to enhance the value of these experiences is to take part in them overseas. Students from the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy had the opportunity to travel to Germany and examine the German health system.

Kelly Potz: Class of 2020

Kelly PotzEliminating the Health Plan Literacy Gap in the U.S.

Kelly Potz is the current president of the Minnesota Pharmacy Student Alliance (MPSA), which brings together student pharmacists from both campuses with a central purpose to promote their growth into excellent pharmacists at the top of their respective fields. 

Chelsea Bolier: Class of 2022

Chelsea Bolier

Q&A with Chelsea Bolier

Chelsea Bolier chose pharmacy very early on, when she was in high school. She knew she wanted to do something in healthcare and pharmacy really stood out to her as an opportunity to build long-lasting, meaningful relationships with patients while also working alongside other professionals.

Erin Host: Class of 2022

Erin Host

With a Growing Interest in Pharmacy, Erin Host Hopes to Empower Patients

A native of Aitkin, MN, Erin Host became interested in healthcare at a young age. Her uncle had lifelong and complicated health conditions. As a member of her uncle’s support system, Host experienced a lot of the healthcare system from the patient perspective.  It was this experience, and a conversation she had with her uncle that shaped Host’s career intentions. 


Laruen Ostlund: Class of 2021

Lauren Ostlund

Deborah A. Kasper Memorial Award Recipient

"I am extremely honored to have received the Deborah A. Kasper Memorial Award, which is given to someone who contributes most to everyday esprit de corps. I have the award hanging above my desk as a reminder of the importance of leadership by showing we are all working together to achieve our goals. It is also a reminder to make sure that I share my appreciation of others - a simple act of appreciation may end up being someone’s proudest accomplishment."


Cassandra Saunders: Class of 2021

Cassandra SaundersA passion for understanding global pharmacy

As a self-described problem solver with a desire to learn new things daily, Cassandra Saunders says her love of  talking to people and interest in how medications interact with and affect the body led her to pursue a career in pharmacy.

Elizabeth Nguyen: Class of 2021

Elizabeth NguyenBridging the Cultural Gap Between Health Care Professionals and Patients

As a pharmacy student, Elizabeth Nguyen's goal is to bridge the cultural gap between health care professionals and patients. She was drawn to the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy because of its involvement with the International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF) and World Health Organization.

Cameron Wing: Class of 2021

Cameron Wing

“I’ve always been drawn to Minnesota”

Having spent the majority of his childhood in nearby Hudson, Wisc., Cameron Wing was always drawn to Minnesota and the Twin Cities metropolitan area. He attended the University of Minnesota where he earned a degree in biochemistry along with a minor in public health before attending the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy.

Leah Cashman: Class of 2021

leah cashman

A Lifelong Learner

Leah Cashman describes herself as always asking “why” and “how,” and a lifelong learner.  Her senior year of undergrad she was working as an equine vet tech and became curious of how TPNs work, which sent her on a quest for answers at the on-site compounding pharmacy. She was blown away with the pharmacy profession.

Ann Nagle: Class of 2020

Ann Nagle

You’re Never Too Old To Start

Ann Nagle spent 10 years working in drug chemistry and toxicology in forensics, testing suspected controlled substances in a lab to identify their contents. She was frustrated to see pharmaceuticals be one of the top three controlled substances abused in her laboratories. Nagle’s desire to help people struggling with addiction is what sparked her interest in pharmacy.

Atuobi Nana Yiadom: Class of 2020

Atuobi Yiadom

First In Pharmacokinetics Graduate Training Program

Atuobi Nana Yiadom is the first pharmacy student to participate in Mayo Clinic’s summer graduate training program in pharmacokinetics. He took Pharmacology and Pharmacokinetics courses at the college and discovered that he really enjoyed precision medicine and the ability to tailor a patient’s treatment.

Brittney Mikell: Class of 2020

Brittney MikellDetermined to Change the World

Brittney Mikell spent three years in Boston working in research at a hospital where she worked on developing a mobile application that enables direct patient feedback to care staff.  Brittney said the application was particularly relevant because the hospital’s nurses were on the brink of strike and the hospital had been looking for ways to meet nurse demands.

Mahli Von Arx: Class of 2020

Molly Von ArxFrom Patient to Pharmacist

Mahli Von Arx was diagnosed with a chronic disease that requires her to be on medication indefinitely.  The care she received as a pharmacy patient gave her the desire to care for patients in the same way.

Mélanie Mahoney: Class of 2020

Mélanie Mahoney

Learning Lessons Overseas

Mélanie Mahoney attended the 78th FIP World Congress of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in Glasgow, Scotland. The intention of the congress is to bring pharmacists from all over the globe to discuss ways to enhance the role of pharmacists, in order to ensure patients and health systems receive the full benefits from the medicines they use.

Rowan Mahon: Class of 2020

Rowan MahonPassion for Pharmacy, Public Health and Advocacy

Rowan Mahon realized that it would be illegal for long-term care facilities in Minnesota to donate medications in the way that 20 other states with repositories are currently doing, and that in order to start a medication repository program in Minnesota, the law had to be changed. Mahon’s passion led her to found the Public Health Advocacy Student Alliance at the college.


Steven Just: Class of 2020

Steven JustSupport American Indians In Science And Engineering

Steven Just has passion for working to increase the number of American Indians in higher education, STEM fields, and health-related professions. Just is a member of the Sisseton Wahpeton Sioux Tribe and Chapter President of the University of Minnesota, Duluth AISES.

Thu Ha Nguyen: Class Of 2020

Thu ha NguyenCommitted to Interprofessional Teamwork

Thu Ha Nguyen represented the University of Minnesota at the National CLARION Interprofessional Healthcare Case Competition. Participating in the CLARION Case Competition led Nguyen to one main takeaway: every profession is unique.

Victoria Smith: Class of 2020

victoria smithGet Involved

“Stay curious, get involved, and don’t be afraid to stray outside your profession.” That’s the advice Victoria Smith, a third-year student on the Twin Cities campus, has for anyone interested in pharmacy.  Growing up near the Mayo Clinic helped her establish a strong interest in health care.

Grace Baek: Class of 2019

Grace Baek

Advocating For The Profession

As MPSA president on the Twin Cities campus, Grace Baek saw how MPhA invests in student development: presentations at MPSA general meetings, scholarships and organization-level support,participation in advocacy through Legislative Day and the Leadership Summit/House of Delegates, and networking at the Annual Learning Networking Event and at national conferences.

Malia Hain: Class Of 2019

Malia HainThankful for the Lifelong Friends She Met in Pharmacy School

From the moment Hain stepped on the University of Minnesota campus during her interview day, she felt as if she belonged at the College of Pharmacy.

Abdi Bile: Class of 2018

Abdi Bile

Serving Medically Underserved Communities

Abdi Bile's reason for getting up every morning is his motivation to help and serve Minnesota’s underserved communities and people of color. When he was starting pharmacy school, polio was making a comeback in Somalia, and just as he was entering his final year in pharmacy school, we had the largest measles epidemic in over a decade right here in the Twin Cities.

Axel Vazquez-Deida: Class of 2018

Axel Vasquez-Deida

Better Quality Of Life

Axel Vazquez-Deida received the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Excellence in Public Health Pharmacy Award for his work and leadership in addressing issues such as access to health services, adolescent health, immunization and infectious disease prevention, social determinants of health, tobacco use, substance abuse, and nutrition and weight status.  

Peter Balogun: Class of 2018

Peter BalogunBig Picture Approach

Peter Balogun quickly learned that managed care was at the center of all the different sectors of pharmacy,understanding the different perspectives of the key players in the healthcare system and having a more holistic approach to the problems our healthcare system faces.

Vu Ha: Class of 2018

Vu HaInitiative For Underserved Communities

Vu Ha began the volunteer initiative Socks n’ Sandwiches after developing a strong passion for community work and volunteering in underserved communities at the College of Pharmacy. On the fourth Thursday of each month, Ha and other volunteers make 60 sandwiches and deliver them to local homeless shelters around the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area.

Emily Schuster: Class of 2017

Emily Schuster

Focused On Wellbeing

Emily Schuster focuses her research on improving the wellbeing of herself and others.  She was the first student to introduce and implement a wellbeing breakout session at the Benefits Fair and has created tips for how students can boost their happiness levels.  She believes that there’s nothing better than boosting others’ moods and talking about happiness.