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Master’s student Danish Malhotra

Master’s student Danish Malhotra.

College of Pharmacy learners credit support for successes at Graduate Studies Celebration, Research Day

March 18, 2024 — 

Hard work will take you far. But add the right supports and College of Pharmacy students say you’ll go further than you ever imagined.

At the college’s annual Graduate Studies Celebration, held March 14 in conjunction with Research Day, nine students received awards for their hard work and dedication as master’s and PhD students in the College of Pharmacy, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences.

“It’s such an honour,” said Jenna-Julie Esteban, who received the Leslie F. Buggey Graduate Scholarship in Pharmacy. This prestigious award is presented to a dedicated student who has achieved a minimum GPA average of 3.5 in the last two years of their previous program of student.

Maintaining this level of academic excellence is a challenge at any time, but in addition to being a hardworking master’s student, Esteban is also a new mother. “The support I’ve received at the College of Pharmacy has been incredible,” she said. “I’ve come such a long way and it’s been such a great experience.”

The event also provided the opportunity for graduate students to give 3 Minute Thesis-style presentations. Master’s student Danish Malhotra, who was awarded a College of Pharmacy M.Sc. Endowment Stipend, gave an overview of his poster, “Neutralizing Interleukin (IL)-1β Reduces Formation of Islet Amyloid Polypeptide Aggregates in Human Islets during Ex Vivo Culturentations.”

With a steady voice, Malhotra took the audience through complex information with simple but effective infographics. As he ended his speech, he gave a special call-out to supervisor Dr. Lucy Marzban. “I am so thankful for her support,” he said. “I am an international student from India and every day I am grateful to be here and for all the opportunities I have had.”

For Malhotra, the key is careful planning and always keeping his eyes on the prize. “I plan my day each day, I think everything through, and I work as hard as anyone can!”

The day also included a keynote presentation by Dr. Daniel Mueller, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto and a senior scientist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

Mueller, who is also head of the Pharmacogenetics Research Clinic at CAMH, is responsible for the development of the first pharmacogenetic testing service for patients with psychiatric conditions in Canada.

Dr. Anna Chudyk delivered the faculty keynote on patient engagement as part of her research practice, providing insight into ways to bring lived experience of patients to inform her work.

Chudyk is not only an assistant professor within the college, but is also a podcaster with a regular program called Podcast: asPERusual, which encourages researchers to include patients and caregivers as a key part of their research teams to get the fullest picture possible.

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