Peyton Braun and Shannon Dickon, third-year student pharmacists in Drake University’s College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences (CPHS), were selected as the 2023-24 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. 

Third-year student pharmacists Shannon Dicken and
Peyton Braun presented with the 2023 Granberg
Awards by dean and professor Renae Chesnut
during Health Professions Day.

Peyton Braun

Peyton Braun, originally from Sartell, Minnesota, demonstrates student excellence through leadership and academics in the CPHS. He served as Committee Co-Chair for Health Professions Day, an event that includes awards, a keynote speaker, breakout sessions, an exhibit hall, and more. Braun has also served as Philanthropy Chair, Recruitment Co-Chair, and Academic Co-Chair for Drake’s chapter of the Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity. In these leadership roles, he helped organize a college-wide book drive, planned the chapter’s rush week, and helped organize practice sessions for lab practical exams.

Braun is also a member of the Phi Lambda Sigma Pharmacy Leadership Society. At the university level, he served as a Drake Student Ambassador Captain, helping create professional development sessions for Drake tour guides and coordinating all volunteer tour guides for the University. Braun also sings in the Drake and Chamber Choirs and serves as a peer mentor for first-year students transitioning into college and college-level singing. 

In addition to these leadership roles, Braun excels in the classroom and as an academic leader for peers. He has been on the President’s List every semester since the fall of 2018. Braun is a member of the Rho Chi Academic Honor Society, and coordinates tutoring for student pharmacists as the organization’s Mentorship Chair. He also serves as a Teaching Assistant in the BPSA course series. 

“Since coming to Drake, I’ve been inspired by my friends and colleagues here to give back as much as could to the school and people I care about,” said Braun. “I am incredibly grateful that my good friend, Shannon Dicken, has also been recognized for her leadership within the college. I’ve been blessed with many opportunities to grow both personally and professionally, and I’m confident this award will inspire me to continue giving back, no matter where I end up in the world of pharmacy.” 

Shannon Dicken

Shannon Dicken, originally from Gilbert, Arizona, has also demonstrated significant student excellence through leadership, academics, and research. She has served as a first-year Student Governance Representative (2018-2019), CPHS Ambassadors Outreach Co-Chair (2019-2020), and Health Professions Day Exhibition Hall Coordinator (2020-2023). Dicken is also a member of Drake’s chapter of Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity, having served as the Recruitment Co-Chair, Secretary, Regent (President), and Immediate Past Regent. She has also served as the Kappa Psi Northern Plains Province Delegate, and held membership on the Risk Management and Legislative, Judiciary, and Province Planning Committees. 

In addition to these leadership roles, Dicken excels in the classroom and as a student researcher. She has been on the President’s List each semester since the fall of 2018 and completed a summer 2022 research internship at the Johns Hopkins Hospital Outpatient Center. Dicken has been involved with the following research projects: 

  • Promoting Vaccination Adherence through Immunization Screening and Administration in an Outpatient Pharmacy. Clinical Collaboration. Johns Hopkins Home Care Group. Baltimore, Maryland.  Presented along with Ryan Whisler and Awura Ama Oduro. 
  • Assessing a Pharmacist-created Protocol for Opioid Prescribing at Hospital Discharge Following Acute Traumatic Injury. Iowa Methodist Medical Center, Trauma Department. Des Moines, Iowa. Presented along with Darla Eastman, associate professor of pharmacy practice, and fourth-year student pharmacist Anna Laire. 
  • Insulin Therapy for Hyperglycemia Management in Critically Ill Patients. Journal of Diabetes Mellitus (2021), 11(5), 317-327. Co-authors were Darla Eastman, associate professor of pharmacy practice, Jared Butler, and Michelle Bottenberg, professor of pharmacy practice. 

“Throughout my time at Drake, I have gained so much professional experience and personal growth just by saying “yes” to opportunities that presented themselves,” said Dicken. “I cannot imagine a Drake experience without the leadership roles and projects that I have been able to participate in, but it feels surreal to be recognized for all my achievements and contributions to the college and beyond. I want to thank those that nominated me for the award, as well as all the Drake students that have supported me throughout the ‘peaks and troughs’ of my time in the college!”

About the C. Boyd Granberg Student Excellence Award

The C. Boyd 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 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.