Students and Alumni Receives Recognition at 2014 CPhA Conference

Please join us in congratulating our student and alumni who will be formally recognized at the 2014 CPhA West Coast Pharmacy Exchange this weekend. Congratulations to all of the award recipients.

Michael Conner ’12 was named the CPhA Distinguished New Practitioner

Michael Scott Harada ’14 received the CPhA Student Pharmacist of the Year Award

Douglas Hillblom ’78 was recognized at the CPhA Pharmacist of the Year

Michael Pastrick ’73 was named to the CPhA Hall of Fame and Pacific Pharmacy Alumni Association Alumnus of the Year

Midnight Magic at the Senior Prom

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Prom attendees dance the night away.

American Society of Consultant Pharmacy (ASCP)-Pacific welcomed 60 seniors to the 4th Annual Senior Prom at Pacific on March 14, 2014. It was a wonderful night of music, food, and company as seniors from church groups, senior living homes and community centers in the Stockton area gathered for some “midnight magic.” With the fairytale-like theme and a very fun and successful prom, anyone can be a Prince Charming or a Cinderella if they open their hearts to some magic.

On this very special night, the ballroom was filled with seniors – some who were first timers to the Senior Prom and some who were veterans, having made the Senior Prom a yearly tradition for themselves. Many seniors were impressed with the sit-down dinner buffet made by ASCP-Pacific board members. While a slideshow of photos of ASCP-Pacific’s health outreach events from throughout the year played in the background, seniors dined on appetizers of salami, cheese and crackers as they mingled with other guests and with student volunteers. They also enjoyed feasting on rosemary chicken salad and vegetarian salad as the main course. For a light dessert, the seniors ate fruit and pound cake.

One highlight of the night was undoubtedly the dancing. With their snazzy footwork and smooth twirling, the seniors really showed their talents as they danced to cha-cha, tango, waltz and more. Since many of the seniors take dance lessons and enjoy dancing as a regular hobby, they were willing to teach their skills to students as well. The dance floor was filled with smiles, laughter and excitement.

To commemorate the night, there was a photobooth complete with a starry night sky background for seniors to take photos. Seniors gathered their friends, new and old, to celebrate being young at heart and having fun. The lovely pictures were printed and framed for the seniors to take home so they could capture this magical night.

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ASCP member Jessica Nguyen ’16 having fun at the Senior Prom

Finally, no prom would be complete without the crowning of the prom king and queen. This year, the prom king is Mr. Cecil Rendon. Mr. Rendon has attended the event since its inception. Looking very sporting in his gentleman hat and a trendy, tan-colored blazer, Mr. Rendon is a humorous man who very much deserved the prom king title. When asked what is his favorite part of the night, he answered, without any hesitation, that dancing the night away was the most enjoyable part of his night. Although “Kansas City” is his favorite song, he does have many other favorites and suggested some of them for next year’s Senior Prom.

This year’s Prom Queen title was given to Ms. Virginia P. McDaniel. This is her second time attending this event, with her first time being in 2012. Her favorite part of the night was also dancing. Her eyes lit up as she talked about her favorite types of dancing, which are cha-cha and nightclub-two-step. She, along with many other seniors, considers dancing as good exercise for their health and takes weekly night dance classes. In fact, a few of the seniors are going to dance classes following Senior Prom. When asked what ASCP can improve on for our Senior Prom event, she indicated that she prefers more waltz and box trot style music because those are the easiest to dance to. Lastly, the prom king and queen shared a sweet dance together.

In all, Senior Prom would not have been possible without the help of Academy of Student Pharmacists (ASP)-Pacific and Dr. Donald Florridia ‘71, ASCP-Pacific advisor, Dr. Joseph Woelfel ’70, ’72, ’78, and student volunteers. The annual ASCP-Pacific Senior Prom was made a night to remember by celebrating health and life. It was also a night to show our appreciation for the seniors in the community and bridge the generation gap between students and seniors. It is our hope that Senior Prom continues to bring more students and seniors together every year and build upon the relationship between the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and the seniors in our community.



Lambda Kappa Sigma Presents Women’s Health Week

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LKS students learning the art of self defense

Every year in March the Alpha Xi Chapter of Lambda Kappa Sigma (LKS) International Pharmacy Fraternity hosts Women’s Health Week. During this week multiple events were planned to help encourage and promote awareness of women’s health and safety.

This year we were proud to host four events, starting off with a presentation by Alexandra Caspero, a registered dietitian on campus. Students were educated on ways to stay healthy by incorporating simple recipes and healthy alternatives to their busy college lifestyles. Ms. Caspero stressed the value of finding healthier alternatives even when considering fast food. We concluded the event with a raffle where two lucky winners received gift cards to fund and advocate for their journey of healthy eating.

The first year members gave a brief presentation about gestational hypertension. At the end of the presentation green tea packets were distributed to the audience as a way to promote awareness of gestational hypertension and an overall healthy lifestyle, because green tea not only helps to control hypertension during pregnancy, but also possesses many health benefits.

Dr. Neelesh Bangalore, MD, PhD delivered a presentation on cervical cancer and the prevention and treatment of the disease. Over 120 people attended this event and were all engaged by Dr. Bangalore’s knowledge on the subject and great sense of humor.

He highlighted the prevalence of cervical cancer in the US and contrasted it with other countries and shared common concerns patients have regarding cervical cancer. Bangalore provided insight on ways to remedy patients’ concerns, all of which students can apply to practice and ultimately emphasized early prevention of cervical cancer through screening.

Women’s Health Week concluded with a self-defense class led by Ernest Mello from Ronin Jiu-Jitsu. Over 40 students had the opportunity to learn how to identify risks, evaluate their strengths, and explore their options when placed in a threatening situation. Mr. Mello encouraged students to maintain their skills through regular practice and incorporation of the physical strategies into games in order for the techniques to become second nature. At the close of the event, students were empowered with the knowledge and skills in removing themselves from dangerous situations.

Throughout the week, LKS also collected donations for the Women’s Center Youth & Family Services organization. This establishment is San Joaquin’s only provider of shelter and services specifically designed to meet the needs of victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and homeless and runaway youth. Donations are given to these victims as they are looking for employment and working towards maintaining a sustainable life.

These events would not have been a success without the support and guidance of LKS faculty advisor, Roshanak Rahimian, PhD.


Tiger Dash for Cash – Sponsoring the CSM

And they’re off! The 8th annual Tiger Dash, hosted by the Department of Physical Therapy (DPT) class of 2014, was a booming success with over 250 Pacific students, staff, and faculty joining together for a day of fitness and health recognition. With the greatest turn out so far, the 2013 Tiger Dash was a fun filled frenzy of activities. Featured at the Tiger Dash were several events such as a 5K run for adults around the Stockton campus as well as a half mile Cub Run for children, a health fair to promote physical fitness which featured booths hosted by local health related organizations and clinics, and a raffle with tons of great prizes. Proceeds for the Tiger Dash went to support the DPT class of 2014’s travel to Combined Sections Meeting (CSM), an annual meeting of professional and student physical therapists. Some of the proceeds also went to the local Stockton YMCA to promote health and well being in the community.

The 5k and half mile Cub Run were the main events of the Tiger Dash. With double the number of runners this year, the class had a lot on their hands. Chelsea Keys ’14, current DPT student and event coordinator said, “The worst part had to be the anticipation for the event and making sure everything came together for race day, but this was outweighed by the best part of the event which was the amazing turn out from the community and all the help from the students to put everything together.” A long time tradition here at Pacific, the Tiger Dash not only sponsors the entire class’ trip to the CSM, but it also helps to promote a healthy lifestyle within the Stockton community. Keys explained, “It’s a great opportunity for the students to work together and to get the community thinking about health and fitness. It was also a great way to give back to an organization like the YMCA.”

DPT students presents check to Mike Vann of YMCA.
DPT students present check to Mike Vann of YMCA.

So how exactly did the Stockton YMCA benefit from the Tiger Dash? Mike Vann, the YMCA program director was very pleased to announce that the YMCA received over $700 from the event. This money will go towards scholarships for families who are unable to pay for programming, like low income families who just can’t afford to put their kids in child care, sports teams, and the like. These families can simply fill out a scholarship application form to participate in YMCA activities. Vann explained the importance of these types of programs, “Children learn at a very early age to develop habits like reading books regularly, being physically active, doing hands-on things, experiencing the outdoors and learning life skills.” One of these life skills is swimming, which is particularly important in San Joaquin County as it has one of the highest drowning rates in California. Vann continued, “Life skills are essential in development. We don’t want to turn anyone away especially if it’s because they don’t have money.” Applying for a scholarship is a very easy task which yields an immeasurable benefit to the community.

When it comes to health and fitness, running is one way to support our active bodies. Running is great for the heart as well as the rest of the body. Exercise is critical in maintaining the health of our bodies and minds. Not only that, but exercising regularly helps reduce stress, and will perpetuate a long and healthy life. Keys gave some advice on improving health in the Stockton community, “We can improve health by starting with education—teaching people about the benefits of exercise and taking care of your body. By holding events like the Tiger Dash, we can bring the community together while promoting the value of a healthy lifestyle.”

The goal of the DPT class was to fundraise enough money to attend the American Physical Therapists Association (APTA) Combined Sections Meeting which is a phenomenal opportunity for these young professionals. CSM allows them to connect with students and professionals that are passionate about physical therapy. The DPT class will also be able to learn about new and innovative therapy techniques, as well as hear about the latest equipment and research in the constantly evolving profession. And did the PT Tigers reach their goal? Absolutely. The Tiger Dash enabled the class of 2014 to attend the CSM with no costs for flights or hotel rooms. Keys exclaimed, “We are very thankful for the donations we received and we are all very happy about the turn out for the event!”


Brett Snyder ’14: Many Paths, One Dream

Brett Synder resizedCommunication is the focal point of making friends, resolving issues, and raising awareness across the globe. Inhibiting communication can have disastrous effects on our relationships and our ability to cope with what’s going on in the world. Imagine a world where there is no communication; there would be no transfer of ideas and civilizations would cease to exist. Here at Pacific, we also believe that communication is vital. Pacific’s Speech-Language Pathology (SLP) students work with the full range of communication disorders and study hard to understand the diagnostics of speech issues, and evaluate language and communication disorders to treat all patients from infants to seniors. One student who stands out is Brett Snyder ’14.

When asked why SLP? Synder exclaims, “So many reasons, so little time! The field has so much depth and variety that it perfectly matches my natural curiosity. On a more personal level, I enjoy SLP because of the satisfaction you get from helping others to have a better quality of life. Being able to work with clients and their families is very appealing to me.”

Synder first studied biology at the University of California, Irvine until he transferred to the University of Hawaii, Manoa. Taking a further interest in his culture, Synder changed majors from biology to Hawaiian studies. After graduating, Snyder returned to the Golden State to work in public education before he decided to enroll in Pacific’s SLP graduate program. Snyder appreciated the accelerated program, “I hadn’t majored in speech pathology as an undergraduate so the prospect of getting my masters completed in just two years was very exciting for me. Visiting the campus and meeting the faculty and staff face to face really sealed the deal.”

After coming to Pacific, Snyder realized that he had many opportunities to be successful in his career. Professors not only did their best to prepare him and his colleagues with knowledge and skills, but also prepared them for their future careers through internship and externship experiences. During the summer, Synder was able to volunteer at an autism camp and worked alongside several speech-language pathologists and students. He also attended the Annual California Speech-Language-Hearing Association (CSHA) Convention to further his professional development. Throughout the convention, Synder was able to participate in networking opportunities with other professionals. Synder explains, “These experiences help us put into practice what we’ve learned in classes, help us to develop as professionals and establish networks.” Synder has also taken advantage opportunities to be involved with local and national organizations such as the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association, as well as CSHA.

Though Snyder continues to have an interest in Hawaiian studies, he never regretted enrolling in Pacific’s SLP program. “I think my greatest achievement up to now is being accepted into Pacific’s grad program. Three years ago, I never would have imagined that I would be working on a masters degree. Several friends and relatives were understandably concerned about how successful I would be in majoring in Hawaiian Studies, so being where I am now makes me feel proud and validated in my decision to remain true to myself and pursue my interests.” Synder continues to feel at home with Pacific and reminisces about his memories here, “My best memory is the Department’s Christmas party skit. Hands down.”

Synder feels that speech language pathology has been the most intellectually satisfying profession as it requires him to be adaptable, observant, analytical, and introspective. Currently, his dream job is to become a speech-language pathologist and have a continually evolving career. He says, “At some point, I’d really like to travel and provide services to people across many countries. I would also like to open a clinic that offers all rehabilitative services under one roof. The clinic would be a teaching one, where professionals work with students to better prepare them for their careers. Essentially, something very similar to Pacific’s program. Finally, I’d like to become a professor or instructor to educate the next generation of SLPs.” In order to support future SLPs, Synder advises that they constantly stay ahead of the game, and always take the opportunity to do extra clinic observations. Most importantly he advises, “students should take the time to take care of themselves.”


Nicole Molina ’14 Gives Back With Time and Treasure

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Nicole Molina ’14, Devon Flannigan ’14, Daniel Leib ’14, Nicole Medina ’14, Alexandra Madrid ’14 and Kimberly Huey ’14 encouraged alumni to join them at CSM.

Thomas J. Long’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students are in it for the long haul. Just ask Nicole Molina ’14. Molina has had a wide range of experiences in her educational journey; she not only attended the Combined Sections Meeting in Las Vegas, but also traveled to Bolivia to assist in wheelchair distribution and customization for the underserved. She exemplifies the immense potential of Pacific students as well as a spirit and compassion for life and global wellbeing.

Molina was one of two class representatives for the Decades of Giving program, which fundraises to sponsor the DPT class of 2014 to attend the Combined Sections Meeting (CSM) in Las Vegas. CSM is an annual meeting of physical therapy professionals and students nationwide that allows for tremendous opportunities for growth and learning. For example, at CSM, students learned about wheelchair technology, robotic assisted gait training and running shoes. Molina elaborates on her attendance at CSM further, “CSM was a great experience. I wanted to jump into everything without any expectations since this was the first conference I had been too. I loved being around and learning from other physical therapists and students. I had the opportunity to learn about new innovative technologies in physical therapy, current legislative issues we are facing and about new techniques in patient care. I hope I’ll have the opportunity to attend this meeting in future years as well.”

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Nicole Molina ’14 distributing wheelchairs to Bolivian children

Before the exciting trip, Molina and her peers had to go through a long process of applying for the Rotary International grant. This process includes being judged on their ability to make up any missed work as well as the benefits they would receive from the experience. Also, Dr. Peterson required that the students learn about fitting wheelchairs prior to the trip. Molina says, “One of the projects she had us complete before the trip was taking apart a wheelchair and putting it back together so we could understand how a wheelchair was assembled.” While in Bolivia, the students’ practice with fitting was put to work; Molina and her colleagues customized over 200 wheelchairs for the underserved. She worked with seating specialists who taught her how to customize everything from the foot rest to the head rest. If this sounds like tough work, just ask Molina, “It was definitely a tall task. Everyone on the project worked hard to ensure that the children received the best possible chair for their condition. In some instances we would work for hours to fit one child making sure that the chair was specific to their needs.”Molina’s experience with wheelchair technology was one aspect of her education that qualified her to travel to Bolivia with Dr. Cathy Peterson for wheelchair distribution. Bolivia is one the poorest South American countries and many people do not have access to healthcare. By providing wheelchairs to the underserved, Molina and her peers were able to give children the ability to finally go outside their homes without being carried by a parent.

This life changing trip allowed Molina to grow immensely as a future PT. She learned many things during that trip that she wouldn’t have learned in the classroom; she learned about patient care, communicating with patients, and flexibility and creativity in altering wheelchairs. The impact of their experiences is immeasurable; students were not only able to gain field experience, but more importantly, they were able to make a difference in others’ lives. Molina explains, “This trip has allowed DPT and Pacific to extend outside the borders of our community and affect individuals in need around the world. The most rewarding part of the trip was being able to help children become more mobile. Often the child’s mother, grandmother or family member walked away crying because of what we had done. Being able to change a child’s life to that degree is enormously rewarding.”

Molina is definitely on her way to making a worldwide change. She is a big believer in the importance of global health. She believes that global health means giving each individual the ability to receive appropriate health care quickly and efficiently despite economic, social or other hardships. Molina explains, “One physical therapy principle is to provide pro bono services for individuals in need, volunteering, educating individuals or providing financial contributions. If each individual took the skill set they had and offered it to others we would be much closer to enhancing global health. The Bolivia Wheelchair fitting is one example of offering services to others.”

As the first in her family to attend college and receive a graduate degree, Molina has exceeded great expectations. She is currently looking at attending pediatric physical therapy residencies and plans to apply in 2015. She is also looking forward to passing her licensing exam in January. Molina’s tips for aspiring PT students is this: “Give back to the community and advocate for physical therapy. Physical therapists are movement specialists. This is the best way to serve others—helping them move!”

Prominent Stockton Physician Joins Pacific

Dr. Joseph Woelfel
Dr. Joseph Woelfel

The Department of Pharmacy Practice at the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is pleased to welcome Dr. Ashok Daftary as the new Patient Care Clinic Medical Director. Dr. Daftary has 37 years of practice in internal medicine and geriatrics. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Geriatrics and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. He joined the Pacific faculty in fall 2013.

“I am privileged to be a part of this University and to create a portal of entry for seniors to Pacific where we hope to help in many ways with their future healthcare,” said Dr. Daftary.

Dr. Daftary, a well-respected Stockton physician, is actively seeing patients in our Clinic. Under a collaborative practice agreement, Pharmacy faculty members and our students, under faculty supervision, now have the opportunity to participate in active patient care. Collaborative practice agreements with Speech-Audiology and Physical Therapy faculty and their students are being discussed. Additionally, Dr. Daftary is providing the “physician’s perspective” to our classroom setting.


Joseph A. Woelfel, Ph.D., FASCP, R.Ph.
Vice Chair, Department of Pharmacy Practice
Director of Pharmaceutical Care Clinics
Coordinator for Geriatric Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experiences
Associate Professor

Grant Builds Bridge Between Physical Therapists at Pacific and in Malawi

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Elisa Carey ‘14, and Kristen Damazio ‘14 with Malawian children

A unique aspect about programs at Pacific, specifically the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, is that students have access to experiential learning opportunities that help shape practice-ready professionals. Student physical therapists are building their skills by applying them in international settings, providing physical therapy to patients and assisting in training Malawi community volunteers in providing proper care.

In December, Dr. Casey Nesbit, Assistant Professor and Director of Clinical Education, along with Carolyn Coghlan ‘14Elisa Carey ‘14, and Kristen Damazio ‘14 traveled to Malawi where they were able to participate in service learning, teaching and research. The trip was partially supported by the Rupley-Church for International Relations Grant.

As part of the service learning component, the students participated in an elective course taught by Dr. Nesbit which helped them plan and prepare for the trip. In Malawi, the students spent the majority of their time at St. Gabriel’s Hospital in a palliative care ward caring for patients who suffered from a physical disability.

“I’m so thankful to Dr. Nesbit for welcoming us into her Malawi family, for her commitment to St. Gabriel’s and her efforts to improving the quality of care in Malawi. When I reflect on my Pacific experience, I know that I made the right choice. I love that Pacific values international and local relationships and partnerships, and I love that they are hiring professors, like Dr. Nesbit, who can tangibly bring that mission statement to life,” said Coghlan.

Carolyn Coghlan ‘14, Elisa Carey ‘14, Kristen Damazio ‘14, and Dr. Casey Nesbit with Malawi community workers

St. Gabriel’s is home to 300 community health workers who dedicate their spare time to the community assisting patients who need additional care at home or those who live in rural areas. Due to the lack of physical therapists and home care resources in Malawi the workers are the only resource for these patients. As part of a new program, Dr. Nesbit and the students coordinated a three day training session for 20 community health workers. The training consisted of lectures, practical teaching and application during a home visit. Participants were provided with a manual of 22 newly learned skills such as range of motion, how to properly roll someone in bed and how to use a cane. Once the skills were taught, the workers were tested on how well they learned each skill. Dr. Nesbit and the students also shadowed the volunteers on home visits to see how well each skill was applied in a real life setting.

“Our hope was to teach skills that were devised for carryover. I saw the effectiveness of our service through the knowledge assessment, the skills competencies and the observation,” said Dr. Nesbit. “I believe our students made a big impact in that they created a huge bridge between Pacific and Malawi. Hospital staff and patients were impressed because once the students returned home they kept asking where the students went,” she added.

The manual that was distributed during the training received high praise from the director of the National Palliative Care Association of Malawi and, as a result, will be be distributed as part of the national guideline for their respective training. Dr. Nesbit will be continuing this collaboration with St. Gabriel’s to graduate 20 individuals from her training each year.The students were also grateful for this unique opportunity. Coghlan explains “When I witnessed the enthusiasm that the community health workers had in learning basic physical therapy techniques and the excitement they had while applying this new knowledge in their community, I realized it’s these moments that make me proud to be a physical therapist and honored to share my knowledge.”

In addition to the training, Dr. Nesbit taught two courses to two classes at the University of Malawi in the School of Physiology. Each class was made up of 40 students and these students represented the first ever student physical therapists in Malawi. She also conducted research focused on physical therapy ethics in a global context.

When asked about the personal impact of this trip Carey replied “The biggest personal impact was working with a people that experienced so many daily hardships yet exuded joy like no one I have ever met. They were an amazingly welcoming community, always excited to share their culture, all the while eager to learn from us too.”

Dr. Nesbit has a long standing relationship with St. Gabriel’s Hospital in Malawi which allowed for a smooth transition. For the past eight years she has been spending two months out of the year practicing physical therapy there.

Q&A with Dr. Sandra Reina-Guerra

Q and A feature logoQ.  What do you believe is your greatest achievement in your life thus far?

A. That I’m not ready to settle now with what I’ve “achieved” in the past.

Q. What is your greatest memory at Pacific?

A. My first day as a student in the physical therapy program and my first day as an instructor returning to Pacific.

Q. What inspires you?Sandy Reina-Guerra

A. The perseverance of our students, the devoted service of our department’s and school’s leaders, the work of recovery of the patients we serve and their loved ones.

Q. What are your goals in the next five years?

A. I would like to see expanded opportunities for Pacific’s physical therapy program graduates to maintain and grow their relationship with Pacific through activities such as student mentoring and continuing education.

Q. What is great about Pacific students?

A. Our students recognize that a quality education is more than just the curriculum they can access by virtue of their enrollment—they are committed to the process of face-to-face engagement with instructors, advisors, one other, and citizens of the local and world communities.  They fuel the learning environment with their curiosity, uphold Pacific’s reputation with their competence, and inspire me with their willingness to serve others.

Sandra Reina-Guerra ’97, ’99, ’03 Named New Chair of Department of Physical Therapy

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Dr. Reina-Guerra named new Chair of Department of Physical Therapy

Pacific is proud to be home to dedicated faculty members who as educators, inspire students everyday. One of these members is Dr. Sandra Reina-Guerra ’97, ’99, ’03 .

Dr. Reina-Guerra received all three of her degrees here at Pacific: her bachelors in 1997, masters in 1999, and her doctorate in 2003. As an undergraduate, Dr. Reina-Guerra chose to enroll at Pacific because she was confident that her bachelors would prepare her well for the University’s Physical Therapy graduate program. She returned to teach at Pacific because of the continued tradition of excellence in the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Program. Dr. Reina-Guerra says, “I witnessed the work of the students who graduated after me and realized that the program continued to improve each year. I maintained a wonderful relationship with the department faculty after my graduation and this lead to my return as an instructor in 2001, accepting a full time position in 2004.” Dr. Reina-Guerra is currently a member of the American Physical Therapy Association and its Sections for Pediatrics and Education. She is also a member of the Pacific Physical Therapy Alumni Association and serves as a liaison between its board and the faculty in the Department of Physical Therapy (PT). In July she will begin her appointment as department chair.

Many students may wonder, why if at all they should pursue academia in their careers. For Dr. Reina-Guerra, the answer is a simple one: “Teaching students is the best way I know to provide a lasting benefit to those in need of our services, particularly children with special needs and their families. The academic environment affords me the opportunities and support for scientific inquiry that are less available solely as a clinician.” Her teaching philosophy is that the student’s learning experience take place in the mind, body, and spirit. She believes it is her responsibility as a teacher in the DPT program to challenge students to develop and test their clinical rationale through inquiry, debate, and physical application of movement theory. Dr. Reina-Guerra states, “I hope students are confident in their choice of profession upon graduation and that they are fulfilled in their work for decades after graduation. My goal is to convey adequately the opportunities for them, affirm their abilities, and inspire them for continual growth.”

As for the students she guides, Dr. Reina-Guerra only has positive things to say. She believes that Pacific students are committed to the process of face-to-face engagement with instructors, each other, and citizens within the community as well as outside. She explains further, “Pacific students fuel the learning environment with their curiosity, uphold Pacific’s reputation with their competence, and inspire me with their willingness to serve others before and after their graduation.” Dr. Reina-Guerra continues to be moved by the perseverance of her students, the service provided by the dedicated PT department and University’s leaders, and finally the recovery of the patients that Pacific serves. Building on her almost 20 year history with Pacific, Dr. Reina-Guerra is excited to see what the future holds.

Dr. Ed Rogan Joins Department of Pharmacy Practice

Ed RoganThe University of the Pacific’s Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is eager to welcome its newest member, Ed Rogan, to the pharmacy family. Rogan comes to us as an adjunct professor. He earned his bachelor of science in biology from University of Illinois and received his doctor of pharmacy from University of Iowa. Originally from Chicago, Rogan followed his Californian wife to the golden coast to pursue a career as a pharmacy manager and ultimately a tenured pharmacy professor. Over the next five years Rogan hopes to learn as much as he can about the department and how it works as well as get involved with research projects. Rogan states candidly, “I just want to learn as much as I possibly can and use that to teach. There’s really a lot to learn.” Fortunately for him, Rogan has several faculty mentors he looks up to and can connect with. When asked about his relationships with the other department members, Rogan replies, “They’ve all been really helpful. I like their personalities and how everyone works together. Everyone has a really good work ethic, they’re friendly, and dedicated to putting out the best pharmacy students they possible can. I really like the family feel here; Pacific can offer everything a big school can, but they also offer the community feeling.”

Rogan joins Pacific with a wealth of experience, previously working at and independent pharmacy, El Dorado as well as Green Brothers Pharmacy where he was the pharmacy manager and ran the community site for Pacific’s Advance Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) program. APPE provides pharmacy students with hands on experience working in a pharmacy and teaching them how to adapt to different settings. For his precepting work, Rogan received the prestigious Stockton Region Preceptor of the Year award in 2006 for his excellence in facilitating students on rotations.

When asked why he chose to pursue pharmacy as a career, Rogan responds, “I’ve always been interested in science and chemistry. I also really enjoy working with people, and I think pharmacy is a good combination of those three things; I can use my interpersonal skills, my communication skills, and my abilities in science to get good patient outcomes.” Rogan was initially attracted to pharmacy because of his grandmother, who was always having what he calls ‘medication misadventures.’ His grandmother’s difficulty with medication issues triggered his desire to help others who had problems with obtaining and using medications. Rogan was finally pushed into taking the first step when his mentor in pharmacy school helped him to focus on exactly what he wanted to do. Rogan explains, “He really pushed me towards community pharmacy practice, and exposed me to things that nobody else was really doing. He was a very innovative pharmacist and was doing very interesting things, which I found fascinating. That synergy between us really pushed me into being the practitioner I am today. Pharmacy is really a crux between science and human interaction; it gives you the opportunity to work one-on-one with patients. Pharmacy just has a certain thing to it. I love it.”

As a pharmacist dedicated to the wellbeing of his community, Rogan details the pros and cons of working in the field. He states, “The positive things about pharmacy are that you build relationships with people and patients, and you begin to build trust with them and that’s one of the best parts about pharmacy practice. The negative side of pharmacy practice is the economic model; reimbursement rates can be low, so the industry is pushing pharmacists away from patients while pharmacy education is trying to push practitioners towards patients.” Rogan is an advocate for relationship building between patient and practitioner and it is this quality that makes him a great professor; he sincerely enjoys the presence of driven students who are inspired to help the community. Rogan explains, “I haven’t had any classes yet, but I feel that the greatest asset of the students here at Pacific is that they are local. They learn here and stay here because they are invested in the community, which is a really good thing.”

Though Rogan has yet to teach a class at Pacific, he has already developed a core teaching philosophy. He wants to first assess students’ initial knowledge and be able to develop a teaching model that would achieve the outcome of a student learning to master a task and essentially seeing pharmacy as a big picture. He says, “I like using active learning strategies, not just lectures. I want to challenge students and get them thinking about how they can apply the things they learn.”

In addition to his role as a professor of pharmacy, Rogan is a guitarist in a band that has recorded and released three albums, a self-taught artist focusing on drawing and oil paintings, and a photographer in his spare time. His creativity is not only used for art however, he also uses his creativity to design and teach. Explaining further, Rogan says, “By using creativity, I can be entertaining and keep my audience or students engaged, and I think it helps facilitate learning. Also, if I’m trying to solve problems, I can use creativity to approach it from a different angle.”

In regards to his appointment as the new pharmacy professor, Rogan concludes by saying, “Having the opportunity to teach here is a very significant event in my life. Now that I’ve hit this level, I’ve got to keep going. Life is about going upstairs.”

Alicia Yeh ’15 Receives APhA Student Leadership Award

alicia yeh and award
Alicia Yeh ’15 recieving the APhA Student leadership Award

Alicia Yeh ’15 is one of only four students nationwide recognized for their outstanding academic achievements and leadership abilities. Her commitment to excellence and her devotion to the pharmacy profession have manifested in the form of the highly prestigious American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Student Leadership Award of which she is a recipient. Yeh was accepted to the doctor of pharmacy program as a 2+3 pre-pharmacy student and has exemplified her leadership qualities in the many student organizations she is a part of. Entering her final year of pharmacy school, Yeh has already demonstrated her capabilities and is on her way to becoming a front runner in the development of the pharmaceutical industry.

Yeh has clearly earned her place as the APhA Student Leader; she is a great advocate for shared experiences in student organizations throughout campus and has joined several associations to invigorate her academic journey. Yeh says, “There are so many opportunities to get involved at Pacific, and my experiences here have really shaped me to be a better student and leader. I’m always learning and growing, whether in the classroom or during practical outreach.” Yeh has been strongly involved with several on-campus professional organizations such as the Academy of Student Pharmacists (ASP) for which she is Vice President of Professional Affairs. ASP provides opportunities for student pharmacists to get more involved by providing patient care projects, community outreach, and professional development. As VP, Yeh has been able to become a positive example for her fellow colleagues. She shares, “I am touched when first year students tell me I’m the reason they decided to get involved. One student has even called me her ‘pharm role model.’”

Yeh is also the coordinator for SALUD Outreach, an organization that coordinates events that allow the community to receive free health services such as screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes. Not only that, but Yeh is also a part of all four pharmacy organizations on campus, the California Society of Health-System Pharmacists (CSHP), National Community Pharmacist Association (NCPA), American Society of Consultant Pharmacy (ASCP), and Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP). She is also involved with the Rho Chi Honor Society, and the Phi Lambda Sigma National Pharmacy Leadership Society. Yeh doesn’t stop there either; she has also attended several conferences including the NCPA Convention, APhA Annual, and the California Pharmacists Association (CPhA) West Coast Pharmacy Exchange. Her participation in these organizations has helped her excel far beyond that of the typical student.

As for being the recipient of the APhA Student Leadership Award, Yeh is overwhelmingly grateful. She says, “I’m so honored to receive this national recognition. It serves as a personal reminder that I’m headed in the right direction. I really enjoy giving back to the School and profession, but each initiative can be a hit or a miss, so it’s nice to know that others appreciate what I’m doing.”

If Yeh could give students some advice, it would be this: “Take advantage of the opportunities presented to you. There are so many ways to make a difference on campus, in the community, and in the professions of pharmacy; all you have to do is get involved.” True to her own words, Yeh has used many of the resources that Pacific has provided to her and urges others to do so as well, “The friends, service opportunities, and leadership that Pacific has provided for me have made my time here priceless.”