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Research & Scholarship Forum Invites Conversation About the Evolving Role of Pharmacists

Research & Scholarship Forum invites conversation about the evolving role of pharmacists

Attendees of the MCW School of Pharmacy’s 2023 Research & Scholarship Forum had the opportunity to talk with more than 50 poster presenters about their discoveries.

“Providing a research and scholarship forum allows participants to learn about the evolving role of pharmacists, particularly in an interprofessional environment, discover advancements in the pharmacy profession, engage in peer reflection, and identify opportunities for future collaboration,” says Kristin Busse, PharmD, BCPS, Research & Scholarship Forum Chair.

The annual event brings together faculty, staff, students, residents, fellows, pharmacists, preceptors and associated healthcare providers as an opportunity to showcase their research or scholarship within the MCW community. After being held virtually in previous years, 2023 was the first year this event was held in person.

Research & Scholarship Forum poster showcase

“The Research & Scholarship Forum is a great way to highlight the diverse work that our amazing students, residents, and faculty engage in throughout the academic year. We were pleased to have so many submissions this year,” says Lana Minshew, PhD, MEd, assistant professor.

The event highlighted two outstanding research projects, selected for their approach, novelty and significance or innovation, as well as the results presented, or conclusions drawn.

Sonu BaruSonu Baru, 2024 PharmD candidate, received the Best Student Poster Award for her project “Differences in Time Spent on Work Activities and Work Characteristics Ratings in the Hospital/Health System Setting Post COVID-19.” Her research mentor on this project was Brianne K. Bakken, PharmD, MHA.

“I hope this presentation spurs some discussion on how pharmacists and other members of the pharmacy workforce can be better supported in their practice,” says Baru. “The contents of my research with Dr. Bakken put a spotlight on areas that pharmacists felt were most impacted by the pandemic. Ultimately, I hope that this presentation reminds attendees of all the valuable contributions they have made and that their efforts are not only recognized but were an integral component in getting through the pandemic.”

Regina PacittoRegina Pacitto, PharmD, a resident pharmacist at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin, received the Best Resident Poster Award for her project “Utilization of an Automated, Probability-Based Algorithm to Determine Pharmacogenomic Adverse Drug Outcome Risk in Cancer.”

“I predict that the clinical impact of pharmacogenomics is going to expand a lot over the next several decades as more research unfolds,” says Pacitto. “In anticipation of this, I hope that my presentation might inspire attendees to start having more conversations about the significance of pharmacogenomics with other healthcare professionals, as pharmacists have a central role to play in managing drug-gene interactions.”

“Winning this award makes me feel especially grateful for the opportunity to be a part of such an innovate project – I would like to recognize Dr. Carrie Oxencis for her forward-thinking research idea and ability to build a relationship with our external pharmacogenomics team to make this project happen,” adds Pacitto.

We also congratulate the researchers selected for Honorable Mention:


  • Payeng Lor, BSN, RN, 2023 PharmD Candidate, selected for her project “The Effects of Dual Soluble Epoxide Hydrolase and Cox-2 Inhibition on Proliferation Activity in Mesangial Cells”
  • Kong Choua Thao, 2023 PharmD Candidate, selected for his project “Structural Basis of Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase Inhibition by Phenolic Nutmeg Compounds: A Molecular Modeling Study”


  • Elaine Ling-Sook Chiu, PharmD, resident pharmacist at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin, selected for her project “Development of a Diabetes Stewardship Service”
  • Kaitlyn Frisbee, PharmD, resident pharmacist at Children's Wisconsin, selected for her project “Bivalirudin Versus Argatroban in the Prevention of Ventricular Assist Device Associated Thrombotic Events in Pediatric Patients”

All Research & Scholarship Forum abstracts are available for review in a digital program.

The School of Pharmacy event also included the Celebration of Teaching & Learning, where Kajua Lor, PharmD, BCACP, founding chair and associate professor in the School of Pharmacy’s clinical sciences department, recognized guest instructors for their positive contributions to the PharmD curriculum.

“This year, we had more than 140 guest instructors from various partners in Wisconsin who contributed more than 1,000 hours of teaching to the next generation of pharmacists. Many of them volunteered their time as instructors, some shared their passions and their clinical expertise, and others who traveled hours – to even across the country – to teach various courses,” says Lor.

The 2022-2023 Outstanding Guest Instructors selected for their contributions to didactic coursework were:

  • Allison Gibble, PharmD, BCPS, BCIDP, clinical pharmacist at Froedtert Health, for contributions over the years in teaching the PHAR 564: Infectious Diseases II Course
  • Anne Daniels, PharmD, BCPS, AAHIVP, clinical pharmacist at Froedtert Health Infectious Disease, for contributions over the years in teaching the PHAR 564: Infectious Diseases II Course
  • Janelle Juul, PharmD, BCCCP, critical care clinical pharmacist at Froedtert Health
  • Jim Cruikshank, PharmD, pharmacist at Froedtert, for contributions in PHAR 521 Pharmaceutics II
  • Mollie Shoyer, PharmD, BCACP, clinical pharmacist at Tomah VA Medical Center, for contributions in teaching IS: Respiratory, Pain and Inflammation

Other guest instructors were selected for their contributions to patient care lab activities, where students learn the skills of a pharmacist practicing at the top of their license. Those 2022-2023 Outstanding Guest Instructors were:

  • Jon Koehler, PharmD – Ascension
  • Tamara Struebing, PharmD, BCACP – Froedtert Primary Care
  • Michelle Schroeder, PharmD, BCOP – Froedtert Oncology
  • Kathryn Wierer, PharmD, BCPPS, BCCPS – Children’s Wisconsin
  • Rodney Ramos – Milwaukee Area Technical College