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LIU Pharmacy to Hold 123rd Commencement

May 11 commencement ceremony to recognize the achievements of 314 graduates


Alka Gupta,Assistant Director of Public Relations
LIU Brooklyn,
Long Island University

Brooklyn, N.Y. - More than 300 students will graduate on Friday, May 11, from LIU Pharmacy, equipped to meet the challenges of a field that continues to expand and evolve.

The College’s 123nd commencement ceremony is at 1 p.m. in LIU Brooklyn’s Wellness, Recreation and Athletic Center. University President David J. Steinberg will confer 104 Master of Science degrees, 206 Pharm.D. degrees and four Ph.D. degrees. Dean David Taft of LIU Pharmacy (Arnold & Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences), which celebrated its 125th anniversary last year, will administer the traditional Oath of a Pharmacist to the graduating students.

Leon Lachman, chairman of the board of Lachman Consultants and chancellor of LIU Pharmacy will receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree and serve as the commencement speaker. Mr. Lachman has played a seminal role in professionalizing the delivery of therapeutic care in the pharmaceutical industry. In 1978, he founded Lachman Consultants, which has become one of the largest and most influential firms in its field, providing technical and regulatory expertise to pharmaceutical and allied health companies around the world.

“We are extremely fortunate to have Leon Lachman addressing our students during this year’s commencement exercises,” said David Taft, dean of LIU Pharmacy. “For more than four decades, Mr. Lachman has helped shape the way pharmaceuticals are developed and produced, and has devoted his time, talents and resources to help prepare the next generation of pharmacy professionals to make significant contributions to the health-care community.”

Since 2008, Mr. Lachman has shared his expertise with Long Island University, serving in various capacities, including trustee and chair of the LIU Pharmacy’s Council of Overseers. He also has supported the institution through his philanthropy. He created the Lachman Family Endowed Scholarship and provided a leadership gift to establish the Lachman Institute for Pharmaceutical Analysis at the College, which will support faculty research, foster graduate-level training and provide a venue for industry-supported research.

Dr. Lachman previously served as vice president, development & control, for DuPont Pharmaceuticals; director of the Pharmacy Research & Development Division at CIBA Pharmaceutical Company; and senior vice president, science & technology, for United Laboratories, Inc. He has written or co-written more than a dozen books and has been a contributor to more than 70 other publications. He also has presented numerous lectures at the meetings of professional societies and associations, at colleges of pharmacy and to FDA chemists.

Melissa Sahai is the valedictorian of LIU Pharmacy’s Class of 2012. As the College’s Gold Medal Winner, with a grade point average of 3.97, she will deliver the valedictory address.

“It’s surreal, I still can’t believe it,” said Sahai, 24, the daughter of immigrants from Trinidad. “From the time I was small, my family was all about going to school, getting a degree and making something of myself.”

The Founder’s Award, established in 1991 by Marie Schwartz to be given in recognition of outstanding service to the College, recognizes one faculty member and one member of the administration and supporting staff. This year’s recipients are Suzanna Gim, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, and Aruna Kissoon, director of program support services.

Two individuals will be recognized with the Daniel Stateman Distinguished Alumni Award. Harold L. Kirschenbaum, associate dean for professional affairs and professor of pharmacy practice, has held numerous key positions at LIU Pharmacy, including director of the postbaccalaureate Pharm.D. program, chairman of the task force that developed the curriculum for the entry-level Pharm.D. and associate dean for experiential education. An active alumnus, he served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors for more than a decade. This past year, Dr. Kirschenbaum served as chairman of the 125th anniversary committee for the College, spearheading LIU Pharmacy’s Founding Day celebration in April 2011 and the dedication of a Wall of Honor in September 2011.

During more than 30 years in the pharmaceutical industry, Ashok G. Nigalaye has proven to be a strong decision-maker, comfortable with taking risks in new product development and raw materials sourcing. Since 2008, Dr. Nigalaye has been the chairman and chief executive officer at Epic Pharma LLC, a generic drug manufacturing company, where he leads the research and development effort, developing new products. In addition, he is the chief scientific officer and a director at Elite Pharmaceuticals Inc., which specializes in the development of oral controlled release products. A licensed pharmacist in the state of New York, he is the co-holder of a number of patents on sustained release drug dosage forms containing hydroxypropyl methylcellulose. Dr. Nigalaye serves as a member of the New York State Economic Development Council for New York City.

LIU Pharmacy / Arnold & Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Established in 1886, the Brooklyn College of Pharmacy became affiliated with Long Island University in 1929. In 1976, the College became a fully integrated unit of the University and was renamed the Arnold & Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. One of the oldest and largest schools of its kind in the country, the College is located on the Brooklyn Campus and boasts an illustrious roster of alumni, including pharmacy professionals who are at the top echelons of their fields, and at the forefront of groundbreaking developments in the pharmaceutical industry. The College educates nearly one quarter of the pharmacists in New York State and many who find careers elsewhere.

Posted 05/04/2012

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