College Connections
An electronic newsletter from the College of Pharmacy

June 29, 2022
Greetings from the Dean
Greetings from the College of Pharmacy. Hopefully the summer is going well for each of you, and you will get the chance to enjoy a few vacation days. Summer has been busy in the College with implementation of our strategic plan, updating curriculum, and kicking off several faculty searches for open positions. One of those open positions is the Director for Experiential Learning. If you know of any great candidates, please encourage them to apply. The summer months also allow faculty to travel to professional meetings renewing old acquaintances that were put on hold during the pandemic.

Over the past year, the College along with our University Foundation liaison, Brad Nelson, have been busy working with our alumni and donors for new scholarships. In the last fiscal year, we have added over $400,000 for new endowed scholarships. In the coming issues of the newsletter, we will highlight these new scholarships created to benefit our pharmacy students. The cost of a pharmacy education has gradually increased from year to year and with the help of scholarships the financial burden is reduced. The scholarships allow students to focus on what is truly important, the classroom knowledge and skills required to become a pharmacist. We are forever grateful to our alumni who have given back to support our student pharmacists.

It seems we have just graduated a new class and we are preparing for the next cohort to start in mid-August. The white coat ceremony is less than 8 weeks away. Enjoy the remaining weeks of summer, we have less than 60 days to the first Husker football game.
2022 Spring Honors Convocation and Commencement
The Holland Performing Arts Center was the venue for the 2022 Scholastic Honors Convocation on May 6th. Sixty-eight students were vested with their doctoral hoods and took the Pharmacist’s Oath. Awards were presented to the 2022 winners of Preceptor, Faculty Preceptor, and Site of the Year. Alumni president, Greg Schardt, presented the 2022 Alumni of the Year award. Spring Commencement was held at the Baxter Arena on Saturday, May 7th.
2022 Doctor of Pharmacy Degree Recipients
Sheima Alkilidar, Carter Lake, IA
Alexandria Barone, Omaha
Bakhodur Bobodzhanov, Omaha
Ashley Bogus, Lincoln
Shane Brichacek, Waterloo
Samantha Brodersen, Wakefield
Cassidy Bruns, Gordon
Breeanna Burkinshaw, Lincoln
Rachel Carrasco, Tulare, CA *
Brady Caverzagie, Papillion
Victoria Cunning, Lincoln
Sarah Dennis, Lincoln
McKenzie Douglass, Grand Island
Christopher Elbracht, Gretna
Anna Eliasen, Meeker, CO
Nathan Feldmann, Papillion
Alyssa Ferrazzo, Omaha
Bridget Gallagher, Kenesaw
Mackenzie Hale, Atkinson
Shelby Hamilius, Omaha *
Andria Heckmaster, Overland Park, KS
Amy Hirschman, Omaha
Dillon Hixson, Holdrege
David Holm, Firth, ID
Yang Hu, Shenyang, China
Minden Huntrods, Walnut, IA **
High Distinction
Justin Isaacson, Omaha *
Jessa Johnston, Omaha
Jennifer Kathol, Bow Valley
Alexandra Kenney, Milford
Molly Kernan, Springfield
Highest Distinction
Jenni Klausen, Wisner
High Distinction
Shane Klein, Lincoln
Marisa Knapp-Rhodes, South Sioux City
Madeleine Koenig, Lincoln
High Distinction
Nathan Kyes, Fremont
Terese Lewis, Omaha
High Distinction
Ligang Liu, Changchun, China
Melissa Malone, Dallas, TX
Jared Malooley, Kearney
Chloe Mapes, Columbus
Kristin McLarty, Lincoln
Blair Miller, Daykin
Jocelyn Mormann, Omaha
Colin Niemeyer, Falls City
Lindsay Oehlerking, Murdock
Jenna Podany, Clarkson
Morgan Pritchard, Howells
Johnna Richter, North Platte
Cassandra Schendt, Papillion
Rebecca Sehnert, McCook
Shailendra Selvaraj, Overland Park, KS Distinction
Olivia Sharp, Omaha
Yufei Shi, Jiangxi, China
High Distinction
Darryl Sokpa, Omaha
Sarah Stage, Gretna
Danielle Stallings, Marysville, KS
Kyle Sutton, Central City
Taylor Thiele, Aurora
Gage Thompson, Omaha
Quynh Tran, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Nicolette Urban, Waverly
Kate Walz, Broken Bow
Anlin Wang, Weifang, China
High Distinction
Ruiqing Wang, Shenyang, China
Jennifer Wetzel, Grand Island *
Cheng Ieng Wong, Macau, China
High Distinction
Haoran Yang, Nanyang, China
*Students earning a dual PharmD and MBA degree
** Students earning a dual PharmD and MPH degree
Spring Honors Convocation Awards
The College of Pharmacy Class of 2022, represented by class president, Brady Caverzagie, presented awards for Preceptor, Faculty Preceptor, and Site of the Year. Jared Matya, PharmD, was selected as Preceptor of the Year. Faculty Preceptor of the Year was presented to Drew Prescott, PharmD, Clinical Assistant Professor. Saunders Medical Center took home the Site of the Year Award. The Alumni Council also presented the 2022 Distinguished Alumnus Award to Dr. Patrick Woster, PhD.
Dr. Jared Matya
Dr. Drew Prescott
Drs. Brent Cernik &
Kevin Stange
Dr. Jared Matya (’16) was praised for pushing students out of their comfort zone and helping them expand upon their foundational knowledge. Dr. Matya did not only make an impact as a preceptor, his guest lectures during the students’ P3 year have stuck with the class thanks to his humorous delivery and ability to simplify complex topics into digestible learning moments. 

Dr. Drew Prescott practices at the Nebraska Medicine Midtown Clinic in Omaha. As one student put it, “He helped ‘flip the switch’ from a student to a practitioner”. Dr. Prescott was complimented for pushing students, but also giving them the independence required to flourish. 

Drs. Brent Cernik (’11) and Kevin Stange (’79) were present to receive the Site of the Year Award. The staff and preceptors at Saunders Medical Center were recognized for providing the perfect opportunity for students to ask questions and learn. It was also noted that this site provided a well rounded overview of a hospital pharmacy. 
2022 College of Pharmacy's Distinguished Alumnus Award
Dr. Woster graduated from the college in 1978 and completed his PhD at UNMC in 1987.
Currently, he serves as Professor, Chair and SmartState Endowed Chair in Drug Discovery at the Medical University of South Carolina.
He has conducted research in multiple areas, including the discovery of inhibitors of the polyamine pathway, novel antimalarial, antitrypanosomal and antibacterial agents, a variety of antitumor compounds, chemopreventive agents and epigenetic modulators.
His research has consistently been supported by NIH, WHO, the Doris Duke Foundation and several other external sources. He has authored more than 135 manuscripts, holds
11 patents and has given numerous invited presentations.
Dr. Woster is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Asian Federation of Medicinal Chemistry, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 2019, he was inducted into the ACS Division of Medicinal Chemistry Hall of Fame.
Senior Awards
Rho Chi Achievement Award
Jenni Klausen
Phi Lambda Sigma Award
Rebecca Sehnert
Academy of
Student Pharmacists Award
Cassidy Bruns
Cunningham Memorial Award in Pharmacodynamics
Anlin Wang
Bradley G. Wulf Memorial Award
Christopher Elbracht
Joseph B. Burt Memorial Award
Brady Caverzagie

Phyllis Rhodes Award
Molly Kernan
Varro & Virginia Tyler Award
Victoria Cunning
Stephen A. Scholtz Memorial Award
Madeleine Koenig
Viatris Excellence in
Pharmacy Award
Cheng Ieng Wong
Barbara Osborne Manchester Award
Ashley Bogus
Wolters Kluwer Award of
Yufei Shi
US Public Health Service
Excellence in Public Health Pharmacy Practice Award
Minden Huntrods
Clinical Services Award
Alexandra Kenny
Patient Care Champion Award
Nicolette Urban
Excellence in Advanced
Practice Experience
Molly Kernan
Faculty News
Yufei Shi, PharmD
Jessica Downes, PharmD, BCACP, CDCES
Carrie McAdam-Marx, PhD, RPh
ACCP Virtual Poster Symposium
The UNMC College of Pharmacy team composed of student Yufei Shi ('22) and faculty members Jessica Downes and Carrie McAdam-Marx competed in the 2022 ACCP Virtual Poster Symposium held May 24 and 25.

Their poster titled: "Impact of clinic-provided home blood pressure monitors during COVID-19 pandemic on blood pressure in underserved adults over 50 years old" was submitted in the the Ambulatory Care PRN's Poster Competition and finished in 3rd place.
Faculty Team Receives Grant
Drs. Kristen Cook and Drew Prescott received an Educational Research Grant from UNMC's Interprofessional Academy of Educators to create a "Challenging Patient Encounters Series" in the curriculum.

The grant was one of four awards from the IEA (International Academy of Educators) for proposals to assess new educational innovations.

Their proposal was titled “Implementation of a Challenging Patient Encounters Series to Develop Affective Domains and Student Confidence.” They will be using the award to create new simulation based learning activities in the Pharmacotherapy Lab to help students learn and practice clinical and communication skills in complex patient encounters.
Recent Faculty Publications
Antiretroviral Refill Histories as a Predictor of Future Human Immunodeficiency Virus Viremia 
Sokpa D., Lyden E., Fadul N., Bares S.H., Havens J.P.
Open Forum Infect. Dis. 2022 9:3

The effects of patient out-of-pocket costs for insulin on medication adherence and health care utilization in patients with commercial insurance; 2007-2018 
McAdam-Marx C., Ruiz-Negron N., Sullivan J.M., Tucker J.M.
[Article in Press] J Manag Care Spec Pharm 2022 : (1-13)

Factors associated with viral suppression among cisgender women living with human immunodeficiency virus in the United States: An integrative review 
Labisi T.O., Podany A.T., Fadul N.A., Coleman J.D., King K.M.
Women's Health 2022 18:

Efficacy of Losartan in Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19-Induced Lung Injury: A Randomized Clinical Trial 
Puskarich M.A., Ingraham N.E., Merck L.H., Driver B.E., Wacker D.A., Black L.P., Jones A.E., Fletcher C.V., South A.M., Murray T.A., Lewandowski C., Farhat J., Benoit J.L., Biros M.H., Cherabuddi K., Chipman J.G., Schacker T.W., Guirgis F.W., Voelker H.T., Koopmeiners J.S., Tignanelli C.J.
JAMA Netw. Open 2022 5:3

Modified chitosan for effective renal delivery of siRNA to treat acute kidney injury
Tang W., Panja S., Jogdeo C.M., Tang S., Ding L., Yu A., Foster K.W., Dsouza D.L., Chhonker Y.S., Jensen-Smith H., Jang H.-S., Boesen E.I., Murry D.J., Padanilam B., Oupický D.
Biomaterials 2022 285:

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on addressing common barriers to pharmacy-based point-of-care testing 
Klepser D.G., Klepser N.S., Adams J.L., Adams A.J., Klepser M.E.
Expert Rev. Mol. Diagn. 2021 21:8 (751-755)

In-Vivo and Ex-Vivo Brain Uptake Studies of Peptidomimetic Neurolysin Activators in Healthy and Stroke Animals 
Nozohouri S., Esfahani S.H., Noorani B., Patel D., Villalba H., Ghanwatkar Y., Rahman M.S., Zhang Y., Bickel U., Trippier P.C., Karamyan V.T., Abbruscato T.J.
[Article in Press] [In Process] Pharm. Res. 2022 :
Student News
Student Senate- College of Pharmacy Student Impact Award
Shailendra Selvaraj ('22) received the 2022 UNMC Student Senate Award for the College of Pharmacy. The award recognizes students who have gone above and beyond in their contributions to the UNMC community.

Shailendra was involved in Kappa Psi's Project Rural Outreach Patient Education (ROPE), a program that provided educational presentations to elementary and middle school students. He also helped lead the Omaha Hand Sanitizer Organization (OHSO) which compounded hand sanitizer for sale and donation to individuals and organizations that did not have access during the pandemic.
UNMC Office of Community Engagement Health Education Award
Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity was awarded the 2021-2022 UNMC, Office of Community Engagement Health Education Award.

The award recognizes student organizations that extend UNMC core values thorough demonstration of exemplary contribution to the development of educational health care services or programming to community agencies, schools or organizations.

The group's Project ROPE partnered with rural elementary and middle schools in Western Nebraska to deliver education Zoom presentations ranging from "COVID-19: Fact vs Fiction", "Proper Hand Hygiene Techniques", and "The Importance of Mental Health". 
College of Pharmacy Spotlight
Highlighting a college alumni, student, and/or faculty member!
Today we hear from 2022 graduate Becca Sehnert and alumni/preceptor Marcia Mueting from the class of 1991!
Becca Sehnert, PharmD
Class of 2022
Where were you born and where did you go to high school?
McCook, NE and McCook High School 

Where did you complete your undergraduate requirements for pharmacy school?
University of Nebraska Lincoln (Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a minor in Biochemistry) 
What is your favorite part of pharmacy school?
Studying with my friends (and making up ridiculous acronyms to remember the most outrageous information). I also enjoy gaining knowledge that I can apply right away at work or on rotations. 

Have you decided where you might like to practice when you graduate?
I will be in a PGY1 general residency at the Sioux Falls Veterans Hospital starting in June of 2022. I am very excited to explore a new town and gain more pharmacy knowledge and experiences. 
If you could send a brief message to all of the people who donate to the UNMC College of Pharmacy, what would you say?
THANK YOU!!!! We love (and utilize) all of the facilities on campus. One of my favorite things about the college of pharmacy is how everyone loves coming to campus to study. We have amazing study rooms and it’s always fun during a study break to walk the hallways and pop in to talk to your friends who are on campus studying.  
Marcia Mueting, PharmD, RP
Class of 1991
Please describe your path to becoming a preceptor for the College of Pharmacy. 
Before my role at the Nebraska Pharmacists Association, I started my professional career as a community pharmacist at an independent pharmacy immediately after I completed pharmacy school. Eventually, my career path led me to the NPA where I began precepting in 2005. Working with students is one of my favorite parts of working at the NPA.

How many years have you served as a preceptor for UNMC?
I have been a preceptor for 15 years.

Please describe your practice site, including the location. What special things do the students get to learn from you?
Our office is in Lincoln, Nebraska, however, we have converted to a mostly virtual rotation. Students learn about a variety of subjects, including how a state pharmacy association interacts with its members, how to advocate for the profession, the legislative process, pharmacy law, and more.
Many of our students write a continuing education article to be published in the Nebraska Mortar & Pestle. I enjoy seeing our rotation students improve their written and communication skills during their time with us.

What is the most rewarding part of being a preceptor for the College of Pharmacy?
Each time I precept a student at the NPA, they bring a unique perspective and demonstrate their enthusiasm and energy for our profession. I get a renewed passion for the profession through these young pharmacists, and I enjoy interacting with these future leaders of pharmacy.

As a UNMC graduate, I enjoy the opportunity to see how the pharmacy program has grown since I was a student. The pharmacy program has come a long way with the new building, and I am impressed by the faculty’s efforts to constantly expand its reach and research. It has been amazing to see my classmates coaching these students to advance the profession. I am proud of our pharmacy’s tradition of apprenticeship and am grateful to help our future pharmacists along the way.

If you could give one message to our current students, what would you say?
Get involved with your state association. The NPA offers a unique rotation experience and what you can learn here is as important as the clinical knowledge gained on other rotations. As a young professionals in a state association, pharmacists have the opportunity to get answers to their questions, while establishing a strong network. We need the input of smart young pharmacists to guide the profession of pharmacy forward. 
Interested in becoming a Preceptor? Contact the OEP office for more information!