Mahi Patel and Jamie Rusan, third-year student pharmacists in the Drake University College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences (CPHS), were selected as the 2022-23 recipients of the C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Scholarship Award. In honor of the award’s namesake, this honor recognizes rising fourth-year student pharmacists who have demonstrated leadership in advancing the profession and have had significant involvement in professional organizations.
Mahi Patel, originally from Lenexa, Kansas, demonstrates student excellence through leadership in the CPHS. She currently serves as the liaison between the Iowa Pharmacy Association (IPA) and DRxUGS, the college’s umbrella organization for all student pharmacist organizations. In this role, Patel serves as an IPA Board of Trustee Member, advocates for the College and profession at IPA meetings and events, and communicates IPA initiatives and updates to the College. She is also the International Pharmaceutical Students Federation (IPSF) Chairperson for the American Pharmacists Association – Academy of Student Pharmacists (APhA-ASP). In this role, Patel addresses and advocates for global health concerns, organizes fundraisers, and arranges free health screenings and resources for local ESL students.
In addition to these roles, Patel serves as a CPHS Student Governance Association Delegate and previously served as a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee Advisor and on the Academic Affairs Committee for the College. She is also a member of the Phi Lambda Sigma Pharmacy Leadership Society and Drake University’s Habitat for Humanity.
Patel is also highly dedicated to her academics, research, and gaining the necessary experience for a pharmacy career through internships. She has repeatedly made the Drake University President’s List and completed research titled “Photovoice in Assessing Student Learning Outcomes.” She is a current pharmacy intern at Iowa Methodist Hospital and completed a DELTA Rx Entrepreneurial Internship at NuCara Pharmacy.
“I am thankful for the honor and recognition of my efforts in leadership and advancing our profession,” said Patel. “I am sincerely grateful for the personal and professional opportunities given to me by Drake University CPHS. I look forward to continuing my contributions to the profession of pharmacy and establishing equity in healthcare.”
Jamie Rusan, originally from St. Louis, Missouri, has also demonstrated student excellence through leadership, research, academic achievement, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives within the College and University. He served as the CPHS Student Senator and CPHS Student Governance Association (SGA) Chair for one year and a CPHS SGA Representative for four years. In these roles, Rusan served as a liaison between the Class of 2023 and the College Administration, organized and facilitated meetings between SGA leaders and the Deans, coordinated voting for faculty and mentor awards for Health Professions Day, represented the College on University Senate, and collaborated with other student leaders on campus. Rusan also served as Academic Co-Chairman of Kappa Psi pharmacy fraternity.
Rusan also served as the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Chairman and a DEI Committee Member for the CPHS. As Chairman, he participated in projects that fostered DEI in the College, including helping create resources related to reporting, curricular integration, and fostering College relations with HBCUs. At the University level, Rusan serves as a first-year mentor for the Drake University Coalition of Black Students. He is also currently working with professor of pharmacy practice Dr. Wendy Mobley-Bukstein on community outreach for a Diabetes Prevention Program and serves as a pharmacy intern at Broadlawn’s Medical Center.
Rusan also demonstrates student excellence as a member of the Phi Lambda Sigma Pharmacy Leadership Society and his involvement in several student organization competitions including the DELTA Rx Next Top Entrepreneur Competition and the APhA-ASP Patient Counseling Competition, the latter of which he was runner up to represent Drake at the national competition. He also completed faculty-mentored research with professor of pharmacology Dr. Ron Torry titled “Cardiovascular Outcomes of SGLT2 Inhibitors in Patients with/out Diabetes and Heart Failure: A Meta-Analysis by Sex and Race.” Rusan presented this research at the Des Moines University Research Symposium and will present it at the Drake University Conference on Undergraduate Research.
“I am beyond grateful to be bestowed this award. I have seen so many students receive this award since my first year as a student, where they have worked tirelessly to achieve their goals, including my outstanding friend Mahi Patel,” said Rusan. “Throughout my experiences at Drake, I have seen my leadership style foster into a style of humility, inclusivity, and innovation. Therefore, I am fortunate to accept this award with the commitment of continuous learning of what it means to be a leader for the advancement of the pharmacy profession and the underserved.”
About the C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Award
The Granberg Student Excellence Scholarship Award, established in 2017 through generous gifts from several Drake pharmacy alumni, recognizes and celebrates the contributions of C. Boyd Granberg, former CPHS dean and faculty member. To read more about this award, click here.
If interested in contributing to the C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Fund, please follow one of these options:
1. Donate online with a one-time gift or an installment pledge by visiting https://alumni.drake.edu/giveonline. Complete the form, selecting ‘Other’ as the Designation and C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Fund in the ‘Other’ box. Select ‘Add to Cart’ and complete the payment information.
2. Mail your donation to the Drake College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences, 2507 University Ave., Des Moines, Iowa 50311. Include a note indicating that your gift is for the C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Fund.