Generous donors contribute to successful year for College of Pharmacy

June 12, 2017

College of Pharmacy
News Story Content

Fiscal year 2017 has been very successful for The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy advancement office. The college will end its fiscal year on June 30 with the fourth best fundraising effort in the past 20 years and the largest increase in annual donors since 1984. Due to its continued historically significant success, the college ranked as the fifth most productive pharmacy advancement office amongst 25 peer pharmacy schools.

In October of fiscal year 2017, the university completed the But for Ohio State campaign, with the college exceeding its $20 million goal by over $3 million. Because of our generous donors, the college, and specifically our students, are benefiting.

“We were successful in surpassing our campaign goal of $20 million focused on student scholarships, teaching and research, but now we need this critical support to upgrade Parks Hall,” said Henry Mann, dean of the College of Pharmacy. “Upgrading our building is critical to Ohio State staying at the forefront of pharmacy education.”

A 50 year old building, Parks Hall is due for some improvements. Fundraising has been targeted at projects that will improve facilities for our students and give them access to first-class technology and cutting-edge learning. The college is planning a $2 million expansion and renovation to a pharmacy practice lab that will give students an area for active learning that is critical to their education.

“Students often end up in hallways to participate in counseling exercises, and they have no opportunity to review their performances. New lab spaces will include specially equipped counseling rooms to allow students to review recordings of their performance and self-assess progress toward course and program goals,” said Katherine Kelly, associate dean for assessment and strategic initiatives.

College of Pharmacy students and alumni and the university as a whole believe deeply in this endeavor.

The PharmD Class of 2017 has pledged $25,000 to sponsor a patient counseling room in the renovated space. Dr. Mark Sirgo, a 1977 graduate of the Ohio State College of Pharmacy and the president and CEO of BioDelivery Sciences International, and his wife, Linda, committed to match all gifts up to $250,000 through the end of the 2017 calendar year. The university will be providing a bridge loan for the Pharmacy Practice Lab renovations to allow work to begin as soon as possible.

“The education I received at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy served as the foundation for everything I have done in my life and career,” said Mark Sirgo. “I continue to pay it forward to the college to help provide the same foundation for our current and future students.”

In total, more than $630,000 has been raised in support of the practice lab – the most money that the college has ever raised in a single year for facilities improvements. Funding efforts for this initiative are ongoing.

The College of Pharmacy is also raising money for a 150 seat classroom and student breakout space in the library of the Riffe building to accommodate the incoming class sizes.

In addition to the college’s facilities effort, five new endowments were created this year for student aid. Alumni Sheila Thomas Jackson, Marialice Bennet, Anne Burns, and Al Vrable all pledged $50,000 to create new endowed funds this year, and family and students of former faculty member Dr. James Visconti have created a memorial endowment in his name. These gifts will make direct impacts on our students and we are very thankful to the donors.

Consistently ranked as one of the best pharmacy schools in the country, the college’s high-quality programs allow students to constantly learn from and interact with an interdisciplinary team of faculty and health care professionals. The support we receive from our donors helps give students access to state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and one of the most comprehensive health centers in the country.