Dear Alumni and Friends,
On Aug. 5, 2013, I became a P1 again. I picked up an orientation packet, sat down a few chairs away from my old spot in room 132, and I went through pre-orientation for half the day. The Class of 2017 was sitting down, getting to know each other and finding ways to battle the August humidity of South Texas. Of course, I was not there to re-enroll in the pharmacy program, but I was there to invest in our future as an association. More importantly, I was there to share with them the pride and honor that has grown within me as the years go by after pharmacy school. I have met several of our students as they proceed through the fourth-year rotations, and many as residents and co-workers. The students continue to be well-mannered, highly educated and represent the college well. This to me is a sure sign that the Texas A&M Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy has kept its promise in delivering high-quality pharmacists to the world. I hope to find you in good spirits as I greet you through this inaugural newsletter, and hope to share with you some information about the Rangel College of Pharmacy Alumni Association.
As an alumni association, we are very young, and those who helped start it know this as much as I do. Some of you may not even know that you are already members of this alumni association or have forgotten this fact. Frankly, I don’t blame you. We are so young that at the moment we are fueled by goals, ideas and the hopes of what will one day come to fruition. The first step we are taking is trying to connect to all of our alumni, both through electronic mail and this newsletter. I hope you take time to read what is presented to you and to continue to follow up with our activities. As we connect and keep in touch, I hope the values of the alumni association will begin to spread. This is in part why I spoke to the P1’s so early on in their careers, and why I am writing this letter to you.
You are a member simply because you graduated, but I am asking that you take another step, if you so choose. Ask yourself, “Is there anything I could do to help give back to the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy?” This is a question I asked myself when deciding to take the position of alumni chair, and, to be honest, there was silence at first. I could not think of anything that didn’t involve donating money. I left it alone for a few days, but then a pharmacy student who I mentor asked me to review her curriculum vitae and had questions about rotations. An avalanche of ideas hit me on how I could help give back to my college without writing a check. We often forget that time is an extremely valuable currency. I took the position and since then have donated some of my time to the college by speaking to the graduates of 2013, the Class of 2017 and brainstorming with administrators to help set up activities. I know what I am asking for at the moment may be unreasonable for some, especially if your family has just begun to grow or your priorities lie elsewhere. I am simply looking to spark the idea in some of you that we can give back in other ways, and all of it is appreciated. Once you make the decision to give back and get involved, we will step in and give that desire direction.
Involvement in our association will be sought out for board membership (executive and non-executive), community service activities (in Kingsville and surrounding areas), regional alumni gatherings to meet other alumni in your area, Professional development seminars, editing the alumni newsletter, or any number of activities that will help make our association strong and active in the further development of our students and our college. If you have any questions about the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy Alumni Association, feel free to contact me. Thank you for your time and I hope to hear from you soon.
Mike De Luna, PharmD BCPS
Texas A&M Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy
Alumni Association – Chair