At the 70th Grand Council August 4-9, 2015, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Alpha Psi Chapter of Phi Delta Chi received the Emory W. Thurston Grand President’s Award. Logan Brodnansky ’17, President of Phi Delta Chi, Alpha Psi Chapter, explains that being the recipient of the Thurston Cup is “the highest honor our fraternity can receive.” The award was established in 1974 through a generous donation by Emory W. Thurston. It is given to the chapter that “promoted the profession of pharmacy and Phi Delta Chi fully during the preceding year,” according to the Phi Delta Chi 2015 Pledge Manual. “To qualify, a Chapter must receive a 90% or higher rating in the Achievement Award Program.” The scores are determined by six weighted categories: Professional & Service Projects Report (one per semester), Chapter Publication, Prescott Scholarship Report, Brotherhood Report and Professional Window Display.
According to Marcus C Ravnan ’94, PharmD, FCSHP, FASHP, who serves as the chapter’s Faculty Advisor, “In addition, the Chapter ranked in the top ten for the Ralph L. Saroyan Brotherhood Award which recognized chapter programs that promote brotherhood within the chapter. The last time Alpha Psi received this coveted honor was in 1980 in Washington DC with Ivan Cy Rowland in attendance. The Pacific chapter has ranked in the top ten for the past 15 or more years and has been in fourth place the past two years.” Over the years there has been increased competition for these coveted awards. Ravnan confirms, “What’s even more significant is that in 1980, there were only 50 chapters of Phi Delta Chi and now there are 85 active chapters competing for this award.” To be recognized for this award is especially meaningful as the award is named in honor of Ralph L. Saroyan ’64, RPh, a key figure in the School’s history, who is currently an emeritus professor and esteemed mentor.
Established in 1883 the coed pharmacy fraternity is the country’s first professional pharmacy fraternity. According to the Phi Delta Chi’s website, www.phideltachi.org, Phi Delta Chi is one of the largest pharmacy fraternities in the country with over 60,000 initiated Brothers and “nearly one in every twelve pharmacists is a Phi Delta Chi Brother.” Pacific’s Alpha Psi stood out among the other 85 collegiate chapters at this year’s Grand Council, the fraternity’s biannual leadership conference. In addition to the recognition of the highest award, they placed for the following individual awards: First place in Professional Service Projects for their professional and community service, second place for Prescott Scholarship Award for academic achievement, third place for Chapter Publication Award and fourth place for the Leadership Award. Receiving these awards is a testament to the ability of Pacific’s pharmacy students to strike a balance between the aspects of professional and social life in the midst of rigorous academic study.
By Anne Marie H. Bergthold