College of Pharmacy Holds Virtual Celebration

The spirit that defines each College of Pharmacy Match Day returned Thursday, April 23, when students and leaders celebrated an historic occasion – the largest number of fourth-year students in the College’s history to match for residency.

The event was held remotely, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but distance couldn’t squelch the excitement of these students.

Thirty-one newly matched fourth-year pharmacy students, along with six recent College of Pharmacy alumni who had been selected for a postgraduate year two (PGY2) residency, celebrated along with faculty and staff – all in the comfort of their own individual locations, via Zoom. One additional student matched outside the ASHP match.

The event opened with congratulations  from College of Pharmacy Dean Richard Kasmer, Pharm.D., J.D., and NEOMED President John T. Langell, M.D., Ph.D.

“The growth and expansion of the pharmacy residency program over the years is one of the many areas of emphasis for the College of Pharmacy, as well as the University,” said Dr. Kasmer. “It’s actually quite remarkable how many of our pharmacists and alumni are continuing their education at local, state, and national residency programs. This success is a testament to the faculty and leadership within the program and is a clear-cut testament to the students’ hard work and dedication that over a four-year period of time leads to this result.”

Jackie Boyle, Pharm.D. (’12), M.S., M.B.A., assistant dean of student success and associate professor of pharmacy practice, also congratulated the pharmacy students.  

“I commend each of you for all of your hard work, all of the rollercoaster of emotions you have been on recently, your dedication to this pursuit of further education, and your interest in helping to better the profession through exceptional patient care,” said Dr. Boyle. “It truly is inspirational to be part of your process.”

The celebration got underway in earnest with announcements of the residency match for each fourth-year student, followed by announcements of matches for alumni from the classes of 2018 and 2019. As each student was announced, many offered a few remarks.

Anthony Wasielewski, who will be staying in Northeast Ohio to serve his PGY1 ambulatory focus residency at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland, could not contain his giddiness as he expressed how excited he was to see the faces of his classmates and faculty again, and just how immensely proud he was of everyone’s achievements.

Jim Ferrell was excited to share the news that he will be staying very close to home. “I actually grew up in Portage County and want to give back to my community while continuing to grow as a clinician and practitioner,” he said.

Ferrell will continue his journey at the University Hospitals Portage Medical Center in Ravenna with a PGY1 residency.

Congratulations to the 31 fourth-year pharmacy students and the six College of Pharmacy alumni on their residency matches! See the full list for the Class of 2020.

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