Faculty Profile: Dr. Jeffrey Johnston

Monday, June 12, 2017

Jeffrey Johnston, affectionately referred to as “Dr. J” by his students, has been part of the College of Pharmacy for 20 years. Starting work in a research lab, Dr. Johnston is now a senior lecturer who was recently awarded both the P1 and the P2 Teacher of the Year for his outstanding contributions to student instruction by the PharmD Classes of 2019 and 2020.

Dr. Johnston came to Ohio State from Cleveland as a first generation college student in the late 1980’s to pursue his undergraduate degree. After switching majors a few times, Dr. Johnston graduated with a bachelor’s of science in microbiology.

Shortly after graduation, Dr. Johnston landed a job in a research laboratory at the College of Pharmacy, focusing on cancer research and supporting clinical trials at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute.

“The work was fascinating. I really enjoyed it and was learning a tremendous amount. After two years, I decided I wanted to do more and asked my boss, Dr. Jessie Au, what she thought about me applying to graduate school. She was extremely encouraging and supportive, so I applied and was accepted into the graduate program. Dr. Au became my PhD advisor,” Dr. Johnston said.

Dr. Johnston finished his PhD and in an effort to expand his experience, took a postdoctoral position in a different lab in the College of Pharmacy. Due to some changes in personnel, Dr. Johnston ended up taking over a postdoctoral advisor’s teaching load, and found that he truly enjoyed the classroom.

“I found that I really enjoyed the dynamic environment of the classroom. Over the years, I took on more and more teaching, and my position evolved into that of a senior lecturer. I never thought this is where I would be at this point in my life, but am truly excited to come to work each day at Ohio State’s College of Pharmacy,” Dr. Johnston said. “I get to constantly interact with a diverse group of very bright students.”

When asked what he likes best about teaching, Dr. Johnston said, “Every day is different and I never know what to expect. It is most rewarding to see students integrate the information they have learned to solve complex problems.”

On why students should choose Ohio State’s College of Pharmacy, Dr. Johnston said, “The Ohio State College of Pharmacy is consistently ranked as one of the top 10 colleges of pharmacy in the country. Although you will be on one of the largest campuses in the country with all of the resources it has to offer, the College of Pharmacy is a close knit community of wonderful students, world-class faculty and a complement of outstanding staff. At Ohio State, we integrate the basic sciences with practice, emphasize a variety of active learning processes, and focus on the student.”

Fun facts about Dr. J:

  • He has two children, both boys, aged 9 and 7.
  • He is a poker player (once a month, with friends)
  • He is a Cleveland sports fan (sorry about your luck, Dr. J)
  • He loves Buckeye football