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USciences Celebrates 199th Founders’ Day

By Jenna Pizzi

Published on February 18, 2020

USciences Founders' Day 2020

Honoring the founding of USciences 199 years ago, the University honored its rich history of innovation and entrepreneurship in healthcare, science, and education at Founders’ Day on February 13, 2020. The event also launched the University’s Bicentennial celebration which will span through 2021. 

Faculty, donned in their regalia, were joined by students and staff as the University honored Lucy Malmberg P’72 HonDSc’20, philanthropist, co-founder of Wedgewood Pharmacy, and an innovator in the compounding pharmacy industry, with an honorary doctor of science degree. Abhinav Illendula BMS’20, Nicholas Cope PhD’20 (Biochemistry), Anil D’Mello PhD, Mark Bullock, associate dean of students, and Kaitlyn Martin, program coordinator for student accommodations were also honored with awards of merit. 

The annual event recalls when on Feb. 23, 1821, 68 prominent Philadelphia apothecaries met in Carpenters’ Hall to establish the basis for the improved scientific standards to train more competent apprentices and students. Their pledge “to invite a spirit of pharmaceutical investigation" led to the organization and incorporation of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy (PCP)—the first college of pharmacy in North America a year later.

PCP is now a part of University of the Sciences. The group ushered in a new era of the practice of pharmacy—the identification, selection, compounding, and analysis of drugs—and laid the foundation for a legacy of future advances and discoveries.

In her speech upon receiving the honorary doctorate, Dr. Malmberg shared an inspirational message for all of those in the audience to stay true to their calling and work to make an impact on the lives of others. 

“My hope and desire for each of you is that you discover a greater meaning and purpose in your calling,” said Dr. Malmberg. “That you have the courage to embrace your life-changing profession because the effects of your calling will last a lifetime.”

She encouraged them to live life with the purpose to become a better person and an extraordinary professional. “Each of you is unique, one-of-a-kind persons and professionals,” she said. “Your spirit, thoughts, passion, and feelings, your ability to learn the reason and act with knowledge and compassion exists in no one else. This rarity makes you special. It is not an accident. Not a quirk of fate. It is intentional. It is uniquely you. 

Bin Chen PhD, professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and director of the graduate program in pharmacology and toxicology, was honored with the McNeil Research Professorship. The professorship honors an individual engaged in pharmacologic research and who demonstrates student mentorship. Laura Mandos PhD, professor of clinical pharmacy and associate dean of Philadelphia College of Pharmacy for student affairs and admissions was honored as the Remington Professor of Pharmacy, which honors an individual who has had an impact on the practice of pharmacy at a national or international level. 

Acknowledging the spirit of the founders in faculty, staff, and students the University presented merit awards to individuals, too. 

Dr. D’Mello was chosen as the 14th recipient of the faculty award of merit. Dr. D’Mello was chosen for his unique approach and novel treatment of phenylketonuria, an inherited metabolic disorder for which he recently received an award from the National Institutes of Health Small Business Technology Transfer. He has also received a patent for his novel technology. 

Illendula was awarded the undergraduate award of merit for his strong research skills, which began in his first year, and his work, which led to the characterization of an anti-triple negative breast cancer compound. Illendula will be graduating this year with numerous publications and has a cumulative 3.95 GPA.

Dr. Cope was awarded the graduate student award of merit in recognition of his leadership in the lab. His work focused on the deregulation of B-RAF causes tumorigenesis which led to numerous presentations including two ACS national meetings and a plethora of publications. 

Bullock and Martin shared the honor of the staff award of merit for their work to improve access for students with accommodation needs under the American with Disabilities Act. The pair took several courses on the topic and worked to incorporate processes and policies for emotional support and service animals on campus.

Categories: News, USciences, Faculty, Staff, Students, Alumni, Misher College of Arts and Sciences, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, Samson College of Health Sciences, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Department of Pharmacy Practice and Administration, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Department of Biological Sciences