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Kelvin Reynolds

MU Pharmacy Program wins national diversity award

FORT WAYNE – The Pharmacy Program at Manchester University is the first in the nation to receive an American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) award that honors commitment to diversity and inclusivity.

The inaugural Outstanding Commitment in Health Disparities and Cultural Competence Award was presented July 23 at the Pharmacy Education annual meeting in Boston by an AACP special interest group that supports culturally and linguistically appropriate patient-centered care.

“I want to thank all of you for your steadfastness in living out our mission to respect the infinite worth of all persons,” said W. Thomas Smith, MU dean of Pharmacy Programs, in the announcement to faculty and staff at the Fort Wayne campus. He praised their “efforts in ensuring our students have an opportunity to work with and learn from persons who are unlike them, and for your dedication to cultivating and sustaining a campus climate where everyone is welcome and respected.” 

Manchester has one of the most diverse pharmacy programs in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan, and its students get special training and do service among underserved populations – including people with limited English skills and of diverse cultural backgrounds.

The Pharmacy Program promotes a service learning philosophy and requires students to do service each year in order to progress into the next professional year. The orientation service event this year is 2-4 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 2, with about 250 people in a dozen locations in the Fort Wayne area. 

The northeast Indiana program welcomes diversity in its various forms and definitions. The program’s Values Statement lists diversity as a core value "... because understanding differences develops respect for ethnic, cultural, and religious pluralism; an international consciousness; and an appreciation for the infinite worth of every person."

Since it began in 2012, the program has been recognized for its commitment to diversity. Walgreens, for example, annually gives the program an award to aid diversity initiatives and provide scholarships. The American Bar Association in 2018 named Smith as a Champion of Diversity and Inclusion for his “extraordinary efforts to foster an environment of acceptance and equality.”

Manchester offers a four-year doctoral program that leads to a Doctor of Pharmacy degree (Pharm.D.). The program makes its home on Manchester's Fort Wayne campus, 10627 Diebold Road. It also offers a one-year on-campus and online Master of Science degree in pharmacogenomics, as well as a dual degree in both pharmacy and pharmacogenomics. Pharmacogenomics uses an individual’s genetic markers to customize and maximize their medication therapy.

About Manchester

Manchester University, with campuses in North Manchester and Fort Wayne, Ind., offers more than 60 areas of academic study to nearly 1,600 students in undergraduate programs, a Master of Science in Pharmacogenomics, a Master of Athletic Training and a four-year professional Doctor of Pharmacy.  It is a northeast Indiana leader in health science education.

To support the Manchester mission of graduating people with “ability and conviction who draw upon their education and faith to lead principled, productive, and compassionate lives that improve the human condition,” visit www.manchester.edu and click on Make a Gift, email giving@manchester.edu or call the Advancement Office at 260-982-5218. 

July 2018