NASP Inaugural Ron Bookman Scholarship Program Recipients Announced

Nov 18, 2019 · NASP News

The National Association of Specialty Pharmacy announced the winners of the inaugural Ron Bookman Scholarship Program on September 10th at the 2019 Annual Meeting and Expo. Of the 21 applicants from colleges across the nation, three winners were selected. Each recipient received a $2,500 scholarship. The funds will be used to aid with student expenses such as tuition, fees, and books.

Applicants were required to complete an application, write a 500-word essay that described how they mirrored the qualities and values of Ron Bookman, submit two letters of recommendation, and provide verification of a GPA of 3.0 or higher. The NASP Scholarship Committee, comprised of Sheila Arquette (Chair), Mike Agostino, Michael Baldzicki, Carmine DeNardo, Benito Fernandez, and Amvrosios Ioannidis, evaluated and scored the blinded submissions.

“We received so many outstanding applications. It was a very difficult task and the decisions were not easy,” said Sheila M. Arquette, RPh, NASP Executive Director. “However, the scholarship recipients selected are truly exceptional individuals.”

Our scholarship winners are:

Jenna Boudreau is a 4th year pharmacy student with a GPA of 3.948 at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy. An excerpt from her essay follows:

“I was introduced to Specialty Pharmacy after my first year of pharmacy school, and I quickly realized that I had found an area of pharmacy that I was passionate about. The two years that I have worked as an intern for Fairview Specialty Pharmacy have not only taught me about a whole new area of medication therapy, but it taught me to be kind, empathetic and conscientious during every patient interaction. My academic goal is to complete pharmacy school and match with a Health System Pharmacy Administration Residence program. My career goal is to complete my residency and gain employment within the Fairview Pharmacy system, ideally within the specialty pharmacy in a leadership role. My peers have often questioned why I want to pursue a leadership role instead of individual patient care and I have reconciled this with my desire to make a contribution to society. I believe the decisions and any needed operational changes I can make within a leadership role will help me change thousands of patients’ lives, which is why I pursued a healthcare profession.”

Erin Foxx is junior with a GPA of 3.64 at Fairfield University. She is majoring in Psychology and Spanish. Erin was not able to attend the NASP conference to accept her scholarship due to her school schedule, so her father, Erin Foxx accepted on her behalf.

An excerpt from Erin’s essay follows:

“As a student, friend, and community member, I strive to live out the teachings of Mr. Ron Bookman each and every day. When I was a freshman in high school, my grandfather was admitted to the hospital for a life-saving bone marrow transplant intended to cure his leukemia. This journey to health was very strenuous and emotionally taxing for all involved. It led me to find a new passion in my life and has given me the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others. In the fall of 2018, I helped establish the Be the Match Club on campus, and since then have been serving my community as the co-president. I helped plan registration drives to help patients find their genetic match as well as plan fundraisers to directly help and support a local family that is currently going through this situation. Although Mr. Bookman could not benefit from this type of work, other patients like my grandfather will benefit from our club’s work. In the first year of the club, we have added one hundred people to the registry.  My grandfather’s diagnosis has allowed me to find true compassion and kindness within myself that Mr. Bookman put forth in his daily life.”

Adam Hussain is a senior pharmacy student at Howard University College of Pharmacy and he carries a GPA of 3.52. Adam is also a founding member of the NASP Student Chapter at his school.

This is what Adam had to say in his essay:

“The pharmacy profession has interested me from a young age because of my desire to work within the healthcare field and make a difference in patients’ lives through improving drug safety and revolutionizing health outcomes. My desire to strive for better stems from my father, who was a first-generation immigrant and the son of an army dentist and nurse. He taught me the value of hard work and persevering in the face of adversity. I have had to struggle both financially and personally to pay my way through pharmacy school. If awarded this scholarship, I hope to develop myself as a pharmacist. My goal is to complete two years of residency before becoming a board-certified pharmacist in either pharmacotherapy or infectious diseases. Another goal is to become a preceptor to help foster the growth of new pharmacy students.”

This scholarship program was created in memory of Ron Bookman, who passed away in March 2019. Ron was a powerful mentor and he was committed to helping others find success and gratification in their life and careers. For those of us fortunate enough to know Ron, he will forever be missed. Through the creation of this sustainable program, we will ensure that his memory lives on.

Thank you to all who submitted applications and congratulations to our scholarship recipients.