Scholarships ease cost of education for students

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A record number of professional student pharmacists at the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy applied for scholarships this academic year and several were awarded this week from various donors. The students earned the scholarships based on the basis of their scholastic record, contributions to their community, and other pertinent criteria.

First-year professional student pharmacists Sasha Cruz and Jeffrey Moran both of San Antonio, Texas, received a $1,000 Bexar County Pharmacy Endowed Scholarship. Jose Garcia of Kingsville, Texas, and Ruth Gonzalez of Eagle Pass, Texas, both second-year profession student pharmacists, and Brittany Bateman of Boerne, Texas, and Pamela Bosse of Sugar Land, Texas, third-year professional student pharmacists, each received a $1,000 Scholarship from the CVS Caremark Charitable Trust.

“I am honored to have received this scholarship. I have worked for CVS since 2004,” Bosse said. “It took me longer than most people to realize that pharmacy is what I am meant to do, but since then, I have given 120 percent effort in my studies. I am very thankful that CVS supports students as they are learning to become pharmacists.”

Fourth-year profession student pharmacists received scholarships. Rocio Olmedo of Laredo, Texas, was awarded the $1,000 D.D. Hachar Trust and the Lamar-Bruni Vergara Endowed Scholarship and Divya Manavalan of Houston, Texas, received the George Family Educational Scholarship. Rachel Musgrove of Sweetwater, Texas, received a $1,500 scholarship from the P.M. Rangel Family Scholarship Fund.

Second-year professional student pharmacist Ann Nguyen of Dallas, Texas, third-year professional student pharmacist Amanda Fuentes of Corpus Christi, Texas, and fourth-year professional student pharmacist Purvi Patel of Hamilton, Texas, each received a $1,000 Walgreens Diversity Scholarship.

First-year professional student pharmacist Monica Partida of Edinburg, Texas, received the $2,000 Walgreens Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Scholarship. Second-year professional student pharmacist Elizabeth Nkwocha of Houston, Texas, received the $1,000 Tarrant County Pharmacy Association Endowed Scholarship and the recipient of the Moore’s Pharmacy Inc./Texas Pharmacy Foundation Endowed Scholarship was third-year professional student pharmacist Katie Taylor of Menard, Texas.

“I am very grateful for being selected to receive the award,” Nkwocha said. “I know there were other qualified candidates, so being chosen is very gratifying. This scholarship will ensure that the high level of education provided by Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy is adequately funded. This will help achieve my goal of making a positive, direct impact on the community that I will serve in the near future.”

Annie Lozano, a third-year professional student pharmacist, was awarded the Wal-Mart Pharmacy Division Scholarship.

“I am proud to be the recipient of the scholarship,” Lozano said. “When I was informed that I was chosen to receive this scholarship, I truly felt honored. In addition to the fact that many qualified students applied for the scholarship, I was delighted to be awarded a scholarship from one of the companies I would potentially like to work for in the future.” Since beginning her pharmacy career as a pharmacy technician, Lozano has wanted to work for Wal-Mart. “Because they were not hiring at the time, I started working for another retail pharmacy where I was able to get four years of experience,” she said. Fortunately, she was offered a summer internship with Wal-Mart which she accepted in June.

Currently, Annie works for a Wal-Mart pharmacy in a small community where she and the pharmacists know many of the patients by name.

Lozano, a Premont, Texas, native, was born and raised in a small, close-knit community, so that type of environment has always been favored by her. She often remembers going to the local pharmacy as a child and watching the pharmacist interact with all of the patients as if they were his or her own family members.

To Lozano, this type of family-like relationship is what makes the pharmacist the No. 1 trusted profession. This same pharmacist-patient interaction is also the main reason why she says she chose community pharmacy as her career upon graduating from the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy.

“I will continue to work with Wal-Mart once a week, despite my rigorous school schedule,” Lozano said. “This scholarship and the opportunity they have given me will help ease the financial burden and allow me to put more focus in my studies so I could learn as much as possible and become a successful pharmacist.”

College receives $10,000 grant for diversity

From left to right, Roy Armstrong, R.Ph., Walgreens market pharmacy director from Houston, and Oscar L. Ortiz, R.Ph., Walgreens pharmacy supervisor in Corpus Christi, give a $10,000 grant to support increasing diversity among professional student pharmacists to Indra K. Reddy, Ph.D., professor and founding dean of the Texas A&M Rangel College of Pharmacy. The grant from Walgreens funds the college’s 2013-2014 scholarships, programming and curriculum initiatives to support increasing diversity among professional student pharmacists.