Christine Vaccaro (She/Her) is a third-year PharmD student at the University of Manitoba. Despite learning from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, Christine discovered a great interest in renal health following clinical and kinetics courses. Harnessing this interest, Christine completed a clinical rotation at the Sherbrook Centre Dialysis Unit and hopes to practice as a renal pharmacist in the future.
Since 2019, Christine has served as a research assistant on perinatal-infant health and drug utilization projects, presenting her findings at local, national, and international conferences. Working alongside pharmacists and students at eqdose.ca, Christine contributed to a hands-on, accessible tool that helps healthcare providers switch medications and minimize pill burden.
Christine's understanding of pharmacy practice in Manitoba led her to conduct a provincial qualitative study evaluating the pre-launch needs of "Quit Smoking with Your Manitoba Pharmacist," the world's first smoking cessation social impact bond. The recommendations from this study were presented to Pharmacists Manitoba to support the success of the program in reducing tobacco-use.
As Manitoba's past CAPSI local representative, Christine is a strong advocate for her peers. Now, as CAPSI National's President-Elect, Christine serves as a voice for students and the pharmacy profession nationally through engagement with stakeholders and planning national events. Outside of CAPSI, Christine has led a wide assortment of pharmacy initiatives, including outreach projects and educational opportunities.
Christine is grateful for the meaningful mentorship she has received from her preceptors, pharmacists, peers, and family. She attributes where she is today to their exceptional support and aims to continue to give back throughout her career. In the future, Christine hopes to find ways to optimize patient care through research, knowledge translation, and the development of practice tools --- areas of work she finds incredibly rewarding.
Megha Kaushal is a fourth-year pharmacy student at the University of Manitoba. Her clinical rotations have introduced her to several specialty areas of hospital pharmacy practice, including geriatrics at the Deer Lodge Centre, adult hematology-oncology and bone marrow transplant at the Health Sciences Centre, and cardiac surgery/intensive care cardiac surgery at St. Boniface Hospital. During the summer of 2020, Megha worked at the Selkirk Regional Health Centre to gain a better understanding of rural hospital pharmacy practice.
Some of Megha’s first experiences of hospital pharmacy took place during the COVID-19 pandemic. Her perspective on working in a frontline capacity exemplifies her dedication and positivity. “Being a student in this time…has given me a chance to reflect on unpredictability and addressing changes, big or small, in the best way possible.”
As Manitoba’s past CAPSI junior and senior representative, Megha promoted the role of pharmacists and advocated for the profession on both a local and national level. She is presently a co-chair for University of Manitoba pharmacy graduation in 2021. Megha has also volunteered her time coordinating pharmacy workshops at the Manitoba Undergraduate Healthcare Symposium and mentoring undergraduate students interested in pursuing pharmacy.
Megha feels fortunate to have had many remarkable mentors and preceptors that have supported her greatly as a student, and in her future practice, she hopes to provide the same support to students. Additionally, she hopes to work in a collaborative setting where she can use her clinical and interpersonal skills to provide high-quality care. As the most accessible healthcare providers, Megha believes pharmacists hold tremendous potential to positively impact patients and communities through education and engagement.
“CSHP is looking forward to watching Megha’s career unfold, and supporting her along the way,” says Zack Dumont, President of CSHP. “Students like Megha bring such amazing dedication and energy to this profession. The future of hospital pharmacy certainly looks bright!”
Dillon H Lee
Dillon Lee, a fourth-year PharmD student from the University of Alberta, is honoured to receive the CSHP Hospital Pharmacy Student Award. Dillon was born in South Korea and now calls Canada home. After completing one year of undergraduate studies at the University of Alberta, she began her career in pharmacy. Dillon hopes to become a change agent for the pharmacy profession. She is motivated by the clinical, academic, and project management work of pharmacists who have charted the expanded scope of practice in Canada.
Dillon feels fortunate to have been exposed to several specialty areas of pharmacy practice. During her training, she completed clinical rotations in the orthopaedic unit at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, the emergency medicine and heme-oncology units at the Foothills Medical Centre, and the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Alberta Children’s Hospital. She also completed summer internships in the cardiology and CV surgery units at the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute, as well as in the dispensary of the University of Alberta Hospital (UAH).
During her undergraduate years, Dillon served as the Co-President of the Health Sciences Student Association; the Project Director of a healthcare guide initiative for international students/immigrants; the Quality Improvement (QI) Project Lead for Alberta Health Services (AHS); an in-patient volunteer at the Stollery Children’s Hospital; a Mealtime Companionship volunteer at the UAH; an Undergraduate Scientific Board Member at the Integrative Health Institute; the Resource Developer for Edmonton inner-city clients; and more. Dillon acknowledges the Pharmacy Christian Fellowship and the “AcetaWINophen” dodgeball intramural team for fueling her continuous involvement both on and off campus.
Hanging above her desk is a note that says, “Lead and measure meaningful changes” – and, accordingly, Dillon pursued over 10 bench-top work, translational research, and QI projects as an undergraduate student. She is currently leading the first Canadian research study on the effectiveness of a QI teaching program for training pharmacy students in basic improvement science.
Dillon hopes to one day practice as a hospital pharmacist and demonstrate leadership in developing new tools and policies that will guide future pharmacy practice.
Dillon received her award at the Closing Gala at CAPSI's 2020 Professional Development Week (PDW). The Closing Gala was held on January 11, 2020, at the Sheraton Center Montreal.
Dillon was also honoured at a formal awards ceremony at the 51st Annual Professional Practice Conference (PPC). The ceremony was held on Saturday, February 1, 2020, at the Hilton Toronto Hotel.
Riverview, New Brunswick
Sydney Evans, a fourth-year pharmacy student at Memorial University of Newfoundland, is honoured to have been selected as this year’s recipient of the CSHP Hospital Pharmacy Student Award. Sydney was born in Moncton and completed three years of undergraduate studies in the Faculty of Science at St. Francis Xavier University before she chose to pursue a degree and a career in pharmacy. She was drawn to the profession for its evolving scope of practice and the value that pharmacists bring to patient care.
Sydney feels fortunate to have gained exposure to many speciality areas of pharmacy practice. She has completed clinical rotations at The Moncton Hospital in the areas of cardiology, diabetes, geriatrics, neurology, and infectious disease. For the past three summers, Sydney worked as a pharmacy intern at The Moncton Hospital, through the Horizon Health Network Internship Program. During this time, Sydney conducted multiple quality improvement projects, including development of learning modules on medication reconciliation, a retrospective chart review to determine opioid prescribing patterns upon discharge, and a pain management survey.
As a pharmacy student, Sydney has been involved in various leadership and advocacy initiatives. Sydney is the financial representative for her graduation class and a member of the Memorial University Pharmacy Students. In these roles, she organizes activities to enhance the social and academic experience of her classmates. Sydney also volunteers with Special Olympics, coaching children and adults with physical and cognitive disabilities.
As the CSHP student representative for Memorial University, Sydney has been involved in promoting hospital pharmacy practice throughout her time in the pharmacy program. In this role, she promotes hospital pharmacy practice by planning hospital-inspired learning opportunities to increase students’ awareness of hospital pharmacy. She is also a member of the CSHP Membership Recruitment and Retention working group, which is developing an action plan for contacting members whose memberships have lapsed.
Sydney is looking forward to becoming a practising pharmacist focused on patient-centred care and hopes to work in a hospital setting while incorporating research and teaching into her career.
Sydney received her award at the Closing Gala of CAPSI's 2019 Professional Development Week (PDW). The Closing Gala was held on January 12, 2019, in St. John's, Newfoundland.
Sydney was also honoured at a formal awards ceremony at the 50th Annual Professional Practice Conference (PPC). The ceremony was held on Saturday, February 2, 2019, at the Hilton Toronto Hotel.
Maria Moreno is a fourth-year PharmD student at the University of Toronto who is honoured to have been selected as this year’s recipient of the Hospital Pharmacy Student Award. Maria completed three years of undergraduate studies at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Arts and Science before choosing to pursue a career in Pharmacy. She was drawn to the profession for its evolving landscape and the value that pharmacists bring to patient care.
Maria feels lucky to have been exposed to several areas of the pharmacy profession. She has completed clinical rotations in hospitals in Toronto and Ottawa in the areas of oncology, emergency medicine, general medicine, intensive care, and rehabilitation. Maria also completed a research rotation at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario conducting a retrospective chart review on the use of cannabis in children. In addition, she has volunteered at the University Health Network working on a variety of projects at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and the Toronto Western Hospital Family Health Team.
During her time as a student, Maria founded a club called Pharmacy Pediatric Initiative that aims to help students learn about the role that pharmacists play in pediatrics, and empower students to provide care for these types of patients in the future. Maria was also part of CAPSI Council where she represented UofT pharmacy students on a national level. She oversaw the implementation of all CAPSI initiatives at UofT and was the chair of Pharmacist Awareness Month 2017. Through this, she created opportunities for students to be recognized for their professional skills and advocate for the profession.
Maria has also been involved with CSHP as the student representative on the Excellence in Hospital Pharmacy Steering Committee. As part of the Communications Working Group, she has been greatly involved in promoting the Excellence program, which assists members in focusing their efforts towards fostering excellence and innovation in patient care.
Outside of pharmacy, Maria’s interests include swimming, travelling, and learning about different cultures. Maria is looking forward to becoming a practicing pharmacist and hopes to work in a hospital setting while incorporating research and teaching into her career.
||Dillon H Lee
||Erin A Cicinelli