Roseman University spectRUm - Summer 2024

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SUMMER 2024 • Publishing Semiannually | VOLUME 7 • Issue 2 INSIDE: CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program PG. 8 10th Annual Research Symposium .......... PG. 10 From Teacher to Trailblazer .......... PG. 14 CULTURAL COMPETENCY in Healthcare & Healthcare Education

We thank our sponsors and players for making our 24th Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament a success.

With your dedicated support, we raised over $62,000 for nursing, pharmacy, and dental medicine student scholarships!

Thank you sponsors and players!
spectRUm is published two times per year by Roseman University of Health Sciences, A Nevada non-profit corporation. 11 Sunset Way, Henderson, NV 89014 | | 702.968.1633 | ©2024 PUBLISHER Jason Roth EDITORS Jason Roth Carson Fry PHOTOGRAPHERS Ryan Arakawa Loretta Campbell Francia Garcia Anny Ortega CONTRIBUTORS Vanessa Maniago Rachael Thomas DESIGNER Amy Glick Special thanks to our Scholar Sponsors Special thanks to our Presidential Sponsors Clinica Excellence Compassionat Care. 2 | Summer 2024

Letter from the PRESIDENT

As the 2023-2024 academic year draws to a close, Roseman University is preparing to embark on another exciting year of educating future health professionals who are fully prepared to provide compassionate and competent care to patients in Nevada, Utah, and across the country.

As our graduates enter their chosen professions - whether it be pharmacy, nursing, or dentistry - they must be prepared to care for patients from different backgrounds, cultures, and lived experiences. Cultural competency in healthcare education is not just a buzzword but an essential component in providing quality patient care. In this issue of spectRUm, we delve into the significance of cultural competency and its integration into our curriculum at Roseman University, as well as through student organizations, pipeline development, and medical missions at home and abroad. From understanding diverse cultural backgrounds to effective communication strategies, our commitment to fostering cultural competence among our students remains unwavering.

A great example is our innovative program, the CVS Health Spanish Pathway, which is also highlighted in this issue. This unique program through the College of Pharmacy, in collaboration with CVS Health, aims to bridge language barriers and enhance access to healthcare for Spanish-speaking communities. Through immersive language courses and clinical experiences, our student pharmacists develop the linguistic and cultural skills necessary to provide comprehensive care to a diverse patient population.

Finally, in this issue we offer a recap of our 10th Annual Research Symposium hosted by Roseman University this past Spring. This milestone event celebrated research and scholarship across our various disciplines at Roseman University and peer institutions in our region. From groundbreaking discoveries to impactful interventions, faculty, students, and residents continue to push the boundaries of knowledge and innovation in healthcare.

As we reflect on these achievements, I am reminded of the dedication and passion that define our Roseman University community. Together, we are shaping the future of healthcare through education, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to excellence.

Thank you for your continued support and dedication to the mission of Roseman University of Health Sciences.

Warm regards, | 3

The Crucial Role of Cultural Competency in Healthcare & Healthcare Education

In today's diverse world, healthcare providers are faced with numerous challenges that require them to be not only clinically proficient but also culturally competent. Cultural competency in healthcare refers to the ability of providers to effectively deliver services that meet the social, cultural, and linguistic needs of patients. It involves understanding and respecting the cultural beliefs, values, practices, and needs of patients, which can significantly impact health outcomes.

Understanding Cultural Competency

The National Center for Cultural Competence (NCCC) defines cultural competence as "the integration and transformation of knowledge about individuals and groups of people into specific standards, policies, practices, and attitudes used in appropriate cultural settings to increase the quality of services, thereby producing better outcomes.” Cultural competency goes beyond simple awareness of cultural differences. It requires healthcare providers to possess knowledge about different cultures, adapt their practices to meet the needs of diverse populations and maintain a respectful attitude towards patients from different backgrounds. This approach is essential because cultural factors can influence health behaviors, treatment preferences, and communication styles.

Cultural competency is crucial for achieving successful healthcare outcomes. To truly embed this vital skill, it is necessary to integrate it into the curriculum and learning environment of healthcare education nationwide. This approach ensures that our healthcare professionals graduate with a comprehensive understanding of how to effectively incorporate cultural competency into their practice, having been both taught the principles and experienced cultural competency firsthand.

“As colleges and universities are being targeted for their DEI efforts it is more important now than ever to educate and ensure we are producing health professionals that can address the healthcare needs of diverse communities,” explains Cheryl Brewster, EdD, MA, Roseman University College of Medicine Executive Dean for Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging.

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Cultural Competency at Roseman University

Roseman University believes that many of the greatest ideas and discoveries come from a diverse mix of minds, backgrounds, and experiences, and the University is committed to cultivating an inclusive and equitable work and learning environment. Roseman University’s focus is intentional and designed to build a sense of true belonging, creating a place where there is mutual appreciation for our unique backgrounds. The University supports cultural competency through various approaches.

Roseman Student Organizations

Roseman University’s vibrant campus culture allows students, faculty and staff to learn and work in an atmosphere where they can grow both professionally and personally. Students have the opportunity to become active members and leaders of dozens of student organizations, allowing them to meet and foster lifelong colleagues through collaborative learning, community service and advocacy. Roseman’s clubs allow students to discover new passions, meet other students with similar backgrounds and interests, and to expand their perspectives and cultural literacy.

Faculty Diversity

As student populations more accurately reflect the populations that we serve and become more diverse, diversity among faculty and staff is also of vital importance. Faculty, Administration, and Staff of Roseman University are broadly diverse with almost 40 percent of total employees belonging to historically underrepresented groups.

Building Diverse Pipelines

Roseman’s pipeline efforts, including its ASPIRE program, are building critical pathways to enable, inspire, and educate the next generation of healthcare providers by connecting with diverse and underrepresented middle and high school students, to increase the diversity of the healthcare workforce by exposing these students to learning opportunities and support. Roseman’s College of Pharmacy and CVS Health have a one-of-a-kind partnership to increase the number of Hispanic/Latino and/or Spanish-speaking pharmacists

to meet the needs of the communities Roseman students serve. The CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program (SPP) provides a unique opportunity for Hispanic/Latino and/or Spanish-speaking high school and undergraduate students to learn about pharmacy career pathways and establish a pipeline of Spanish-speaking students to enter the field of pharmacy with a desire to serve the Hispanic/ Latino community.

Medical Missions

Critical to learning and developing cultural competency is working within diverse communities of need locally, regionally, and globally. Roseman students embark on numerous medical missions around the world, serving at-risk populations in need of primary care. These missions offer students an unparalleled global view of public health issues, alternative healthcare systems, and insight and experience with diverse populations that build empathy, compassion, and cultural competencies.

Serving at Home

Roseman students also are provided numerous opportunities to serve their local communities through events, service, and donation of care to underserved populations. These experiences provide valuable insight to faculty and students alike on the importance of understanding diversity, cultural sensitivity, and varying socioeconomic differences when providing sensitive, culturally competent healthcare.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Advisory Council

Roseman University’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Advisory Council was created to develop university-wide initiatives that focus on matters related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. This committee, in addition to many other responsibilities, helps promote and maintain a welcoming and respectful community atmosphere at Roseman that visibly encourages understanding and integrity. It also assists in designing university-wide programs, events, and initiatives to increase awareness, inspire action, and support a culture of diversity within the Roseman Community. | 5

According to Gretchen Keys, EdD, MS, Roseman University College of Medicine Assistant Dean for Faculty and Staff Equity, at Roseman University, “At Roseman University we prioritize equity and patient-centered care. Our curriculum, experiential learning, and community engagement ensure students appreciate diverse backgrounds. This approach leads to improved health outcomes and greater equity in healthcare delivery.”

The Impact of Cultural Competency on Patient Care

Cultural competency has a deep impact on patient care. One of the key benefits is improved patient-provider communication. Effective communication is essential for building trust, understanding patient needs and preferences, and ensuring that patients are informed and empowered to make decisions about their health. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), “Cultural competence is essential for effective shared decision-making [between the patient and provider].” When healthcare providers understand the cultural context of their patients, they can communicate more effectively, leading to a better understanding of diagnoses, treatment options, and adherence to medical recommendations.

In addition to better patient-provider relationships, cultural competency can lead to better health outcomes. Patients are more likely to trust and follow the advice of providers who understand their cultural backgrounds and respect their values. This can result in improved treatment adherence, better management of chronic conditions, and ultimately, better health outcomes and reduced healthcare costs.

When applying cultural competency into patient care the AHRQ states that it is important to “keep in mind that culture is not homogenous. There is great diversity among individuals—even in the smallest cultural group. Remember, culture changes over time, especially when one cultural group is exposed to and influenced by another culture.”

Challenges to Cultural Competency

Despite its importance, achieving cultural competency in healthcare can be challenging. Language barriers, for example, can hinder effective communication between providers and patients from different linguistic backgrounds. Additionally, cultural differences in health beliefs and practices can lead to misunderstandings and conflicts in the healthcare setting. For these reasons, it is not only important to understand others’ lived experiences, but to also recognize our own limitations when working with people from different backgrounds and cultures. According to The Joint Commission, “Implicit (subconscious) bias refers to the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions and decisions in an unconscious manner. These biases, which encompass both favorable and unfavorable assessments, are activated involuntarily and without an individual’s awareness or intentional control.”

Based on a study done in 1995 by Anthony Greenwald and M.R. Benaji, the concept of unconscious bias suggests that “much of our social behavior is driven by learned stereotypes that operate automatically – and therefore unconsciously – when we interact

with other people.” The Joint Commission also states that “what makes implicit bias frightening in . . . healthcare is that the results [are] unthinking discrimination of which caregivers are not aware.” It is important to be aware of these challenges associated with cultural competency because as Martin Luther King Jr. stated at the National Convention of the Medical Committee for Human Rights in 1966, “Of all forms of inequity, injustice in healthcare is the most shocking and inhuman.”


To address these challenges, healthcare providers can adopt several strategies to enhance their cultural competency. The AHRQ suggests several strategies:

1. Learn how to interact with diverse patients by keeping an open mind.

2. Ask patients about their beliefs regarding their health condition.

3. Participate in cultural competence training.

4. Be aware of your own culture and how that may affect how you communicate with patients.

5. Reach out to cultural brokers to help you learn more about the differences and similarities between cultures.

6. Know what you don’t know, meaning don’t be afraid to let your patient know that you are unfamiliar with their culture.

7. Provide culturally appropriate decision aids.

8. Provide qualified medical interpreters.

9. Work to build trust.

Cultural competency is a critical component of effective healthcare delivery. Healthcare providers need to understand and respect the cultural beliefs, values, and practices of their patients to ensure that they receive the highest quality of care possible. By enhancing their cultural competency, starting with their healthcare education experience, healthcare providers can improve patient outcomes, reduce disparities, and ultimately, create a more inclusive and equitable healthcare system for all.

6 | Summer 2024 | 7

Dr. Kalin Pascacio, CVS Health Spanish Pathway 2023 graduate


In the ever-evolving landscape of healthcare, diversity and cultural competency have become integral components of education and practice. Recognizing this imperative, Roseman University's College of Pharmacy established the CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program in 2018. This innovative initiative, borne out of a strategic collaboration between Roseman University and CVS Health, aims to address the unique healthcare needs of Hispanic (Spanish-speaking) communities in Nevada and Utah, while nurturing a new generation of bilingual pharmacists.

The demand for pharmacists who are proficient in Spanish is substantial due to the increasing necessity for pharmacists to possess language skills and cultural awareness to deliver safe and effective healthcare to the Hispanic community. This community is sizeable, expanding, and diverse. Data from the Census reveals that Hispanics make up around 19.1 percent of the total U.S. population, in Nevada 34.3 percent, and in Utah 19.9 percent. However, less than five percent of employed pharmacists nationwide are Hispanic, indicating an underrepresentation of Hispanics in the pharmacy workforce.

The Impact of Roseman University's CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program

Dr. Susan Nguyen, co-founder of Roseman’s CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program, sheds light on the program’s significance in addressing the disparity. "The program is rooted in three core objectives: introducing bilingual and Spanish-speaking students to pharmacy, recruiting and retaining them at Roseman University, and ultimately, serving the healthcare needs of Hispanic communities," explains Dr. Nguyen. With over $350,000 in funding from CVS Health, the program has been able to provide scholarships, mentorship, and transformative educational experiences to Roseman’s students.

Dr. Nguyen emphasizes the importance of boosting the presence of Spanish-speaking pharmacists due to its positive impact on enhancing access to healthcare within the Hispanic community. By increasing the number of Hispanic pharmacists, communication barriers can be dismantled, and a deeper level of cultural understanding can be provided, leading to better healthcare outcomes and services tailored to the needs of this community.

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Since the launch of the CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program 2018, the College of Pharmacy has seen 53 percent increase in the number of enrolled pharmacy students who identify as Hispanic/Latino. “We’re very proud of what we have achieved with this program,” said Dr. Nguyen. “Over time, as our graduates enter the pharmacy workforce in Nevada and Utah, and surrounding states, we hope they will inspire others in the Hispanic community to pursue the profession.”

events within the Latino community,” says Dr. Nguyen. "These experiences not only strengthen their language skills but also prepare them to provide personalized care to Spanish-speaking patients."

While fluent in Spanish and engaged in her Hispanic community, what benefited Dr. Pascacio the most was learning important medical terminology. Furthermore, she shares how the program fosters a sense of community and support among students who come from different backgrounds. "I loved the CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program. It really brought us together, and I felt like we were a community of likeminded individuals," shares Dr. Pascacio.

"Even though not all students were fluent in Spanish or of Hispanic background, they recognized the importance of increasing access to healthcare for Spanish-speaking communities."


Dr. Kalin Pascacio, a CVS Health Spanish Pathway 2023 graduate, shares her journey and the impact of the program. "I'm originally from California, and then I moved to Las Vegas when I was a teenager. I grew up with my dad, who's Mexican, and I always felt a connection to my Hispanic culture," she explains. Pursuing a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology with aspirations to become a physical therapist, Dr. Pascacio's experience working at a Las Vegas community pharmacy in a Hispanic neighborhood exposed her to the critical need for Spanish-speaking pharmacists in her community, motivating her to pivot and instead pursue pharmacy as a career.

“I was working as a front store employee of the pharmacy as the only Spanish speaker in the store,” recalled Dr. Pascacio. “They always requested my help for translation in the pharmacy, so I began to spend more and more time there. Eventually, they encouraged me to train as a pharmacy technician. My interest in pharmacy grew from there and I started taking the prerequisites for pharmacy school before applying to Roseman.”

Once enrolled in Roseman’s Doctor of Pharmacy program, the CVS Health Spanish Pathway Program offers students like Dr. Pascacio unique opportunities to enhance their education and cultural fluency. "In addition to their regular pharmacy curriculum, Spanish Pathway students receive mentorship, access to a medical Spanish course, immersive rotations at CVS Health pharmacies located in Spanishspeaking communities, and opportunities for community service through Movimiento Estudiantil Roseman, a student organization that provides medical Spanish workshops for health professional students and participates in health screenings and educational

The impact of the Spanish Pathway Program extends beyond the classroom, as graduates become advocates for healthcare equity and cultural competency. "I feel like this is where I'm needed," said Dr. Pascacio. "Being in the program and serving my community motivated me to be part of a movement towards greater healthcare access and understanding, and also showing others in the Hispanic community that they can pursue pharmacy too."

• Collaborate with like-minded individuals who want to serve the Hispanic/Latino communities

• Connect and network with local, regional, and national CVS Health mentors

Since graduating from Roseman with her PharmD, Dr. Pascacio has been working as a CVS district support pharmacist floating between locations. She recently landed a position at a CVS Pharmacy y más store in a primarily Spanish-speaking neighborhood in Las Vegas. Her long-term goal is to be a provider of medication therapy management (MTM) to her Hispanic community.

• Complete Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experiences (IPPEs) at CVS Health pharmacies with a large Spanish-speaking population, when possible

• Eligible to receive annual scholarship funds

Like Dr. Pascacio, as CVS Health Spanish Pathway graduates embark on their professional journeys, they are poised to make a significant impact in the healthcare landscape. "Our students and graduates are not just pharmacists; they are leaders, advocates, and role models within their communities," affirms Dr. Nguyen. "Through their dedication and commitment, they are transforming the delivery of care for Spanish-speaking populations and inspiring a new generation of pharmacists."

• Develop leadership and project management skills

• Eligible for a part-time, paid intern job with CVS Health

• Receive access to a medical Spanish certification course

• Receive mentorship from Spanish Pathway faculty

Get involved! Scan for more information

follow us on Instagram at @rosemanspanishpathway or email | 9

Roseman Celebrates

Collaboration, Discovery, & Growth

Roseman University of Health Sciences 10th Annual Research Symposium

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“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” – Henry Ford

Embracing a growth mindset is not just a personal journey but a collective effort that challenges ourselves and our colleagues to embrace continuous improvement. It's a journey that requires honesty, teamwork, and a disciplined approach to address all facets of a project. This commitment to growth, sustained over a decade, is a testament to long-term dedication and perseverance. Taking the time to honor and appreciate our collective successes and milestones only fuels our motivation to keep going, as we gain a broader perspective from stepping back for a brief moment.

On Wednesday, February 21, Roseman University held its 10th Annual Research Symposium simultaneously on the Henderson and South Jordan campuses. Open to the public, the event featured hundreds of research posters and three podium presentations at each campus by Roseman students, residents, faculty, preceptors, and guests from other institutions from the surrounding region and around the world.

The event marked the ten-year anniversary of the Roseman University Research Symposium and is a testament to a decade of remarkable growth for this initiative. This growth, which cannot be measured in numbers (although the numbers are indeed impressive!), is a source of pride for us all. Often, as initiatives expand, quality can suffer. However, intentional efforts have ensured that as our scope and scale have increased, quality has not been compromised. The event has evolved from a small, internal gathering to a studentcentric, interdisciplinary symposium with national and international participation.

two degrees in four years. Growth? Check. Quality? Check. Increased Collaboration? Check. Other interconnected successes? Check.

Started in 2015, Roseman University’s first annual Research Symposium began as the College of Graduate Studies was a nascent seed of an idea. While Roseman was conducting its own health science research, it was a fledgling effort in a state that had some catching up to do compared to some of its western neighbors. The first symposium included 65 presentations from within Roseman.

Enter 2024. Ten years later, this year’s event included 371 total presentations covering a wide and vast set of healthcare topics including bench-top science, clinical research, and educational research. These researchers seek to solve some of our most significant human health challenges through their work and dedication. Additionally, over 66 external institutions contributed their research, representing numerous highly reputable institutions across the United States and across the world. Institutions represented this year range from those local such as Touro University and Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine, Brigham Young University, to University of Connecticut, Sao Paulo State University, University of Roma, and Gandhi University of Health Sciences in Karnataka, India.

Related, today Roseman’s College of Graduate Studies is thriving, offering a Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences with an optional focus on Data Science and Health Informatics and a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences, as well as the innovative 3+1 Dual Accelerated Doctor of Pharmacy/Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PharmD/MSPS) program, allowing students to complete

Now, let’s take a look at a few of this year’s exciting research presentations.

Dentofacial Effects of Radiotherapy on Pediatric Population with Retinoblastoma

Researchers Kristi Truong and Dr. Joseph Cheever in Roseman’s College of Dental Medicine are working on a literature review related to retinoblastoma, the most common type of eye cancer in children. This literature review will look at the side effects from treatment, in order to better understand how to manage the disease and interventions.

Pharmacognosy and trichomoniasis: A scoping review protocol

Researcher Claire Hartwell from Touro University Nevada examined trichomoniasis as one of the most common nonviral STIs becoming resistant to known treatments. The goal of the review is to look at essential oils as a jumping off point into new medical treatments for trichomoniasis, much like how penicillin was first a bacterium before becoming a medication.

Patient Education on Naloxone Use and Fentanyl Testing

Monika Baranek, Kyra Dockstader, and Dr. Erin Johanson in Roseman’s College of Pharmacy, South Jordan, tackle the topic of Naloxone as a vital medication to treat opioid overdose and patient education on recognizing the signs of overdose, Naloxone administration, and the availability of testing strips for Fentanyl. Fentanyl testing strips can be used to identify drugs laced with Fentanyl and can save a life if used to prevent accidental overdoses.

BY THE NUMBERS External Presentations Total Presentations
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 2024 2019 2015 0 65 66 142 371 28 | 11


As a health sciences institution, Roseman’s mission is to advance the health and wellness of the communities we serve. We partner with schools and organizations to offer learning opportunities and moments of inspiration to young students. Through extraordinary partnerships like the one with Faith Lutheran Middle and High School, we can inspire the next generation of healthcare providers, researchers, and innovators.

This year, Vanessa Maniago, Dr. Jeffrey Talbot, and MBS student Tyler Prescott, partnered with the Faith Lutheran STEM Academy and Faith educators Emily Blank and Steve

Morrill to support and mentor four Faith students in the Honors Molecular Genetics Class in preparing a project and research poster that was presented at this year’s Roseman University Annual Research Symposium. The extraordinary work of Mitchell Bailes, Sarah Duckworth, Talia Lorenz, and Skylar Tan was among the 371 projects this year with “Utilizing Antibiotic Chewing Gum as an Agent to Reduce Specific Harmful Bacteria and Increase Oral Health”. We are incredibly proud of these students for their hard work, insights, and ability to participate at such a high level.


Ten years of good work has depended on the efforts of many. The University wishes to thank all those who have contributed to the Research Symposium. We wish to offer special thanks to the following people.

Dr. Susan Nguyen and Dr. Elizabeth Unni (now at Touro University COP) were both the founding HD and SJ campus chairs, respectively. The campus chairs and their committees do the vast majority of the work planning and putting on the event. They both helped shape the foundations of the symposium, allowing it to grow.

Dr. David Rawlins has been instrumental in transitioning to electronic submissions and continues to help manage that process each year.

Dr. Kamran Awan and Dr. Shankargouda Patil helped broaden the event's reach to the international community.

Dr. Martin Lipsky (retired), the former Chancellor of the South Jordan campus, played a significant role in securing sponsorships to support the symposium (it’s important to note that we don’t charge registration or participation fees, in keeping with the student-centric, training focus of the Symposium).

The Student Chapter of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS). Student volunteers help with the event's day-of planning.

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On Friday, February 16, Roseman University College of Dental Medicine in South Jordan, Utah held its most successful Give Kids a Smile® event since before the COVID-19 pandemic. Faculty and student dentists provided free dental screenings and cleanings to 827 Salt Lake City area children who also received a voucher to return for free comprehensive exams, x-rays, sealants, and up to $100 in additional care. The event is made possible with the support of Marathon Petroleum Corporation Foundation.


With the support of a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) the College of Medicine’s EMPOWERED program is now serving Reno, Carson City, and Lyon and Churchill counties in Northern Nevada, in addition to Southern Nevada where it was established in 2018. The program provides support to pregnant and postpartum individuals who are experiencing a substance use disorder with a tailored, person-centered approach designed to empower its participants to be prepared for the birth of their babies and to thrive as caregivers. The program links participants to prenatal and substance use treatment as needed, and to community resources that address the social determinants of health.


Dr. Matthew Thacker, Clinic Director and Program Director of the Advanced Education in General Dentistry Residency program at Roseman’s Nevada campuses, has been honored as the Vegas Inc. 2024 Healthcare Headliner in the Dental category. Dr. Thacker was selected by a panel of judges for his dedication to patient care, educating the next generation of dentists, and his commitment to providing care to the underserved through Cure 4 The Kids Foundation and Adopt a Vet Dental Program.


Recently, Roseman University College of Pharmacy achieved a historic combined Phase I and Phase II residency match rate of 81.5 percent. Pharmacy students at Roseman’s Henderson, Nevada and South Jordan, Utah campuses matched into residencies at renowned institutions nationwide in acute care, community care, critical care, managed care, ambulatory care, medication use for safety & policy, health system administration & leadership, and pediatric pharmacy. | 13


Dr. Debbie Beckstrom’s Journey in Pharmacy

Dr. Debbie Beckstrom, a distinguished alumna of Roseman University's College of Pharmacy class of 2016, has had an inspiring career path that took her from a high school science classroom to the forefront of pharmacy informatics at Intermountain Health.

Discovering Pharmacy: A Life-Changing Encounter

Dr. Beckstrom’s journey into pharmacy began with a personal health struggle. "I was seeing my doctor monthly to every other month for sinus infections," she said. One day, while filling an antibiotic prescription, a pharmacist suggested she try a neti pot. This simple advice changed her life—Debbie hasn’t had a sinus infection since. This pivotal moment sparked her interest in pharmacy, setting her on a new career path.

From the Classroom to Roseman University

Before embarking on her pharmacy career, Dr. Beckstrom was a high school science teacher at Alpine School District in Utah. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University (BYU). The transition from teaching to pharmacy wasn’t easy, especially with two young daughters and the prospect of a rigorous PharmD program. However, with support from her husband, who she referred to as her biggest cheerleader, Dr. Beckstrom pursued her dream, showing her daughters that they can achieve anything they set their minds to.

Dr. Beckstrom believes having her daughters watch her struggle through pharmacy school and now living her “dream job” has been deeply impactful for them. “It shows them that even if you make one decision, you can totally shift gears and go a different way, and it's okay," she said.

Memorable Moments at Roseman University

Dr. Beckstrom’s time at Roseman University was filled with growth and discovery. "Roseman truly opened my eyes to all the opportunities that I would have as a pharmacist," she says. One standout experience was her involvement in research, thanks to her friend and classmate Megan Corsi (now Dr. Megan Park), who introduced her to the research domain and opened her eyes to how research can directly impact patient outcomes. “Ultimately, that's why I wanted to be a pharmacist: to help patients and improve patient outcomes," she said.

A Passion for Pediatrics

Dr. Beckstrom's passion for pediatric pharmacy was ignited during a rotation at Primary Children’s Hospital. Working with immunocompromised children undergoing chemotherapy was a powerful experience. "You see these patients as fragile, but they stand up to their health challenges with incredible strength," she said. This experience cemented her desire to help improve patient outcomes through research and specialized care.

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Breaking Barriers

Dr. Beckstrom celebrates earning her PharmD with her family on June 4, 2016 at the Marriott Center in Provo, Utah.

"Roseman truly opened my eyes to all the opportunities that I would have as a pharmacist."

In an impressive feat, Dr. Beckstrom secured a position in the NeoNatal Intensive Care Unit at Intermountain Medical Center without completing a residency—a testament to her exceptional skills and reputation. While interning at American Fork Hospital, she helped develop a patient engagement program that significantly improved patient interaction scores. This initiative caught the attention of a manager at Intermountain, leading to her eventual hiring. "It was meant to be," said Dr. Beckstrom.

Innovating in Pharmacy Informatics

Today, Dr. Beckstrom is part of the digital technology services (DTS) team at Intermountain Health, where she contributes to the pharmacy portion of the electronic medical records system. Encouraged by Dr. Megan Park, Dr. Beckstrom earned her informatics certification from

Share your Story!

the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. She quickly recognized the difference an effective electronic health record build could make for frontline healthcare workers. In January 2023, she transitioned to the DTS team and has thrived in her role ever since.

Dr. Beckstrom's journey from BYU, to high school science teacher, to Roseman University's College of Pharmacy, and now to her successful career at Intermountain Healthcare, is a testament to her dedication, passion, and professional excellence. Her story serves as an inspiration to current and future PharmD students, illustrating the impact that a committed and compassionate pharmacist can have on patient care and the healthcare system. Dr. Beckstrom's legacy is one of continuous learning, impactful contributions, and dedication to the field of pharmacy.

Are you a Roseman University alum with a story to share about your life after graduating? If so, email to tell us about it. You may be featured in a future print issue or digital edition of spectRUm. | 15

Roseman University Summerlin Campus

One Breakthrough Way, Las Vegas, NV 89135

Free Event – Complimentary Light Food and Refreshments

Zoom link will be provided the day of the event via email to those who’ve RSVP’d

SEPTEMBER 19, 2024

Alzheimer’s Disease: New Horizons

Presented by: Dr. Gregory Schneider

OCTOBER 17, 2024

Bolstering Oral Health in Patient Populations

Including Those Medically Fragile: The Path to Healthier Mouths & Bodies

Presented by: Dr. Civon Gewelber

NOVEMBER 14, 2024

The ABC’s of Medicare: Navigate Open Enrollment with Confidence Presented by: Teresa Rawlins

DECEMBER 12, 2024

Unwrapping Your DNA: What it Can Tell You About Your Heritage and Health

Presented by: Dr. David Rawlins

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