OXFORD, Miss. – This year’s graduating classes at the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy recognized their outstanding teachers during spring commencement and awards program ceremonies.
Students in the first year of the pharmacy program, or PY1 chose Soumyajit Majumdar, associate professor of pharmaceutics, as their Teacher of the Year. PY4 students graduating with Doctor of Pharmacy degrees selected Bridgett H. Chisolm, pharmacy manager at the UM Medical Center, to receive the Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience Preceptor of the Year award and G. Phillip Ayers, chief of clinical pharmacy services at Baptist Health System in Jackson, as their Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience Preceptor of the Year.
The PY2 class chose Stephen J. Cutler, chair and professor of medicinal chemistry, as its Teacher of the Year, and PY3 students selected Laurie Warrington, clinical assistant professor of pharmacy practice, as their Teacher of the Year. PY2 and PY3 classes presented their awards during the school’s awards program in April.Majumdar teaches the Basic Pharmaceutics course to PY1 students. He received the pharmacy school’s 2011 New Investigator Award for his research on ocular drug delivery and biopharmaceuticals and a Faculty Research Fellowship Award from UM in 2007. He is the author of 15 scientific papers and has garnered more than $2.7 million for research during the past four years.
“Dr. ‘Jit’ is an amazing professor who is always willing to help,” said Kayla Hawkins of Mendenhall, PY1 class president. “He is always available to anyone in need and strives to make each and every student happy.”
Ayers is board certified in nutrition support pharmacy and was named Pharmacist of the Year by the Mississippi Society for Health-System Pharmacists in 2002 and 2009. He also received the school’s Clinical Sciences Teacher of the Year Award in 2007 and 2008 and its Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2011.
“Dr. Ayers is an exceptional pharmacist and a wonderful teacher,” said Katie Sims of Athens, Ala., president of the Doctor of Pharmacy class. “He is always thoughtful of his patients and students, and is a great role model.”
Chisolm received her Doctor of Pharmacy degree from UM and has served as a preceptor for the school since 2006. Her areas of practice include pharmacy management and institutional practice.
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“We are so thankful to have Dr. Chisolm as a preceptor,” Sims said. “She has a great personality and goes above and beyond to make sure that students get a variety of experiences that will help them in practice.”
Cutler teaches Introduction to the Principles of Medicinal Chemistry, and his research interests include evaluating isolated natural products for effects on the central nervous system and their potential as anti-infective agents. In 2008 and 2009, he received the school’s Pharmaceutical Sciences Teacher of the Year Award.
“Dr. Cutler always comes to class prepared to massage our brains and presents interesting stories that pertain to the information we are learning,” said Geremy Carpenter of Olive Branch, PY2 class president. “When he can tell that the class understands the information he is teaching, he yells out, ‘Oh man, we’re cooking with gas now!'”
Warrington, who also received the PY3 class award in 2011, facilitates problem-based learning during the third professional year. Board-certified in advanced diabetes management and in ambulatory care, she serves as vice president for the central region of MSHP and on the advisory panel of the American Pharmacists Association’s community pharmacy residency program.
“Dr. Warrington is a very effective teacher who consistently makes herself available to her students and warmly welcomes them with her cheery smile,” said Miranda Jordan of Jackson, PY3 class president.
For more information about the UM School of Pharmacy, call 662-915-7265 or visit http://www.pharmacy.olemiss.edu.