Story by Emily Sadecki
Coming up on Tuesday, March 5 the 26th Annual Pharmacy and Health Sciences (PHS) Day will provide students with the opportunity to engage in a variety of professional development events as well as be recognized for various accomplishments.
“This event is a highlight of the academic year for our college,” Renae Chesnut, associate dean for academic and student affairs in the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, said. “Between the high quality programming that is included as well as the celebration of those receiving awards, it provides a venue for the college to come together and celebrate the accomplishments of the previous year.”
A committee has spent roughly six months planning and preparing for this event, run by co-chairs Kirsten Elwood and Elizabeth Moravec, both current pharmacy students. A lot of work goes into planning this event including finding a topic, an intriguing keynote speaker and mini-discussion speakers and exhibitors.
This year’s PHS Day theme is “Chase the Challenge: Seeing Abilities in Disabilities.” The keynote speaker is Tom Pomeranz, president and CEO of University LifeStiles, a nationally acclaimed company that provides training to disability service organizations.
“He is a nationally recognized speaker, trainer and clinician in the field of disabilities,” Moravec said. “We’ve heard he has a way of capturing his audience with storytelling, passion and humor, making his message memorable.”
The idea to center the day around the topic of individuals with disabilities came after one or Moravec’s classes chose it as a focus for the week.
“It struck me as a topic that everyone could relate to,” Moravec said. “Not just in their profession, but in their daily lives as well.”
The morning consists of a welcome by the co-chairs, the keynote speech, a presentation of various awards and a state of the college address by Raylene Rospond, dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. After lunch, there will be a chance for students, faculty and professionals from the community to bid on a number of silent auction items and then attend a variety of breakout discussions, with topics ranging from financial planning to healthy habits.
“It is a constantly evolving event as we try to make the day more educational, entertaining and beneficial to all students, faculty and healthcare professionals from the community that attend throughout the day,” said Moravec.
Something unique to this year is the ability to offer a presentation by the keynote speaker for the entire campus. This speech will take place on March 5 from 6-7 p.m. in Parents Hall for anyone interested in hearing Pomeranz speak about disabilities and how to work with people with disabilities.
Morning events are also open to the public and students and staff are encouraged to attend.