October 6, 2021

News & Announcements

Welcome the newest PharmDawg!
Congratulations to Dr. Susan Smith, her husband Matthew and their 3-year-old daughter Claire on the newest addition to their family, Cooper Douglas Smith! Cooper made his grand entrance on Monday, September 27, at 4:14 pm, weighing 7 pounds & 5 ounces and measuring 19.5 inches long.  Mom and baby are both healthy and doing well!
It's Beat Week!
This Beat Week, we're going head-to-head against the Harrison School of Pharmacy at Auburn University to raise money for need-based scholarships. As of this morning, the UGA College of Pharmacy had 55 donors, while the Auburn University Harrison School of Pharmacy had 22 donors. 

Make a gift before midnight on Saturday, October 9, and help us beat the Tigers - on and off the field! Give now.
Alumni Award Nominations Open!

Do you know a PharmDawg alumni or friend who deserves special recognition from the College of Pharmacy?

We are seeking nominations for the 2021 Distinguished Alumnus, Distinguished Service, and Outstanding New Alumni Awards.

Nominations are due October 11, 2021.

Questions? Contact Kim Hamby, Director of Alumni Relations.
Commissioner Jasper Watkins to Speak Next Thursday

On Thursday, October 14, at 6pm, Gwinnett County Commissioner Jasper Watkins will join the College of Pharmacy for a talk addressing "Health Disparities and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Pharmacy Care." Commissioner Watkins, a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the Army, is the principal/consultant for Watty Consulting, LLC, and senior account executive for the Group Purchasing Organization, Minnesota Multistate Contracting Alliance for Pharmacy Infuse. He served 25 years as an Army pharmacist, five years as chief of the Bureau for Statewide Pharmaceutical Services for the Florida Department of Health and two years with the Atlanta Veterans Administration Medical Center's pharmacy.

A nuclear pharmacist, Jasper received a bachelor's degree in pharmacy from Florida A&M University and a Master of Health Services Administration from Central Michigan University. While in the service, he assisted in the placement of wounded personnel from the September 11 attacks on the Pentagon, and helped lead pharmaceutical support for civilians in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and resupply operations immediately after Hurricane Andrew.

Register in advance for this webinar here.

Nominations Open for The President's "Fulfilling the Dream" Award

Nominations are now open for the President’s Fulfilling the Dream Award, which recognizes individuals in the University of Georgia and Athens-Clarke County communities who are working to make Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream of equality and justice a reality. 

Award winners demonstrate commitment to volunteerism and civic engagement in addressing critical community issues; utilize King’s philosophy to reduce tensions, resolve conflict and foster goodwill; and apply King’s teachings to build bridges of understanding and unity. 

Click here to nominate someone. Nominations are due October 15.

Grand Rounds: Bivalirudin Use in Pediatric ECMO Patients

Aubrey A. Slaughter, PGY2 Pediatric Pharmacy Resident at Augusta University Medical Center, will be presenting Grand Rounds on October 13th from 12:10-1:10pm. The presentation will:

  • Describe the indications and precautions for anticoagulation in pediatric patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO).
  • Compare and contrast the advantages and disadvantages of bivalirudin compared to heparin for anticoagulation use in ECMO.
  • Categorize a specific patient who would benefit from bivalirudin versus heparin.
Grand Rounds take place Wednesdays from 12:10-1:10pm in the following rooms and via the Zoom connection below:

Augusta 135
Savannah HL2101
Albany ES Conference room
Athens RC 362

Zoom Link
Meeting ID: 953 4712 0449
Passcode: 754824

Pharmtoberfest 10.21.21

Athena Update

A major update to Athena will occur Saturday, October 9, 2021.  Athena will be unavailable during the update. 

This update will provide a new, user-friendly look and feel for students, faculty, and advisors to several modules in Athena, including the Personal Information, Student, Registration, Student Account, and Faculty and Advisor modules, as well as updates to the modules’ functionality. These updated modules will be easier to navigate and will be mobile-friendly.

This update will include:

  • New functionality for students related to Registration and Enrollment Verification.
  • Student photos will be available on class rosters for faculty.
  • A new feature called the Advising Student Profile that provides an individualized view of a student’s academic information.
  • Consolidation of multiple pages to a single page for easy access.

For more details on these updates, please visit the ConnectUGA website.

ETIS Network and System Maintenance

Save the Date — Saturday, November 6th!
Join us for fun, food and family-friendly games as we celebrate the inaugural 2021 Dean's Tailgate & Class Reunions at the UGA College of Pharmacy. Reunions for class years ending in 1 & will be celebrated! The event begins 3 hours prior to kickoff for the UGA vs Missouri game.

COLT - COVID-19 Information

University Health Center to Provide COVID-19 Booster Shot

On September 22, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration amended its emergency use authorization of the COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine to include a single booster dose at least six months after completion of the full vaccine series.  Boosters are recommended to prolong protective immunity against the COVID-19 virus because experts are beginning to see in certain individuals, reduced protection against mild and moderate COVID-19 disease.

Beginning Monday, September 27, 2021, UGA faculty, staff, students, retirees, and dependents (18 and over) who have received the Pfizer vaccine series (2 doses completed more than six months ago) and who meet eligibility requirements outlined by the Georgia Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control, may schedule appointments to receive the Pfizer COVID-19 booster shot.

Appointments may be scheduled at Individuals should bring their original vaccine card to the appointment. Those who have received the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccines are not eligible to receive a Pfizer booster dose at this time, per CDC guidance. Vaccination status will be verified on-site.

Based on the FDA’s authorization and CDC recommendations, the following groups are eligible to schedule appointments for the Pfizer COVID-19 booster dose if it has been at least 6 months since the completion of the primary Pfizer series:

  • People 65 years and older;
  • People aged 50-64 years with underlying medical conditions;
  • People aged 18-49 years with underlying medical conditions, based on their individual benefits and risks; and
  • People aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting, based on their individual benefits and risks.

Research, Accolades, & Media

Faris Almutairi Successfully Defends Dissertation

Faris Almutairi, PBS Ph.D. Candidate, has successfully defended his doctoral dissertation titled “Regulation of the Expression and the Anti-inflammatory Function of RGS10 in Activated Microglia and Macrophages." Faris was mentored by Dr. Shelley Hooks and Dr. Balazs Rada. Congratulations, Faris!
Caitlin Williams Appointed to the Phi Lambda Sigma National Student Engagement Committee

Caitlin Williams, Pharm.D. Candidate, Class of 2023, was appointed to the Phi Lambda Sigma National Student Engagement Committee through June of 2022. The purpose of the Student Engagement Committee is to work closely with our collegiate chapters to foster opportunities for engagement and development of student leaders. Congratulations, Caitlin! 


Employer Spotlight Series

The office of Student Affairs is hosting a Employer Spotlight Series. During these Employer Spotlight sessions, companies will share more information about their organization and their services, as well as highlight career opportunities.

The next event is:  October 7th @ 6pm featuring Walmart

These are great opportunities for students to connect with future employers! They will take place in Pharmacy South 220 (and will also be available via Zoom for students on extended campuses). 

LGBTQ+ Resources, Presented by Chad Mandala

Sponsored by SNPhA and the Office of Student Affairs, tomorrow during Org Hour, learn more about the UGA resources available to LGBT+ community members and allies from Chad Mandala, Director of the Pride Center at UGA. Join via Zoom.

Hispanic Heritage Month Speaker: Dr. Emily Medina

In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, NHPA and the Office of Student Affairs welcome Dr. Emily Medina, Southeastern Regional Director for the National Hispanic Pharmacist Association, in a virtual talk at the UGA CoP on Tuesday, October 12 during Org Hour. Join via Zoom.

Join the PharmCast Team!

Our PharmCast podcasts and videos feature interviews with students, UGA faculty, and pharmaceutical experts in our community. We discuss a wide variety of current events, including medication management, vaccine discoveries, drug regulations, breakthroughs in our field, and much more.

This is a great opportunity to collaborate with faculty and peers, network, and it is also an amazing CV opportunity. We have THREE open positions to become a vital part of UGA COP's first and only podcast. Apply here!

Have any questions? Email us at (Lillian Zulu), (Bhavi Patel), (Antoinette Morkeh), (Eresi Ojebe)!

Applications are due at 11:59pm on October 31st.

American Public Health Association Monthly Student Webinars

The American Public Health Association is hosting several webinars where amazing guest speakers share their insight and experiences.

October 21st — LBGTQ + Health and Education, featuring Brayden Misiolek. Register here!

November 18th — Oncology Care November, featuring Ramya Antony and LCDR Chan Mitchell. Register here!

December 2nd — Diabetes Care and Education, featuring LCDR Tabitha Dillinger and CAPT James Chapple. Register here!

The UGA Office of Sustainability is now accepting proposals for the 2021-22 Campus Sustainability Grants Program.

Funded by the student Green Fee, this competitive program provides up to $5,000 for student-proposed projects designed to advance sustainability through education, research, service, and campus operations.

Successful projects will address UGA's strategic priorities and integrate social, environmental, and economic solutions to help ensure that all people can thrive, both now and in the future.  Proposals are selected based on merit, positive impact, implementation feasibility, and available funding.

Campus Sustainability Grant Deadlines:

  • Proposals Due – November 15, 2021
  • Notification of Award – December 8, 2021
  • Project Completion – All project funds must be expended before June 1, 2022.

To learn more, visit the Campus Sustainability Grants Program website or email

The Office of Global Engagement Passport Initiative

Financial Planning Appointments Available!

Questions or concerns about financial planning? Schedule a consultation with our Financial Literacy Graduate Assistant to discuss your financial health, including developing financial goals, managing your personal budget, paying off debt and student loans, and building credit. Sign up for an appointment here!

Student Fundraising News

Don't miss out on the latest student fundraisers! Check out all the newest UGA Pharmacy merchandise for sale in this week's DSAC Fundraising Weekly.

Faculty & Staff

Dialogues in Diversity

The Office of Institutional Diversity is excited to host their biannual Dialogues in Diversity event on Thursday, October 7, from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. Dialogues in Diversity is a lunchtime series that provides an opportunity for faculty and staff to discuss, share, and offer recommendations for enhancing diversity and inclusion across the University of Georgia campuses. 

It is an honor to have Booker T. Mattison, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Entertainment and Media Studies, serve as the speaker for this semester. He will show and discuss his short film entitled Ungubani, which tells the story of a young Black man who puts himself at risk to save a young white woman in distress. The film is a tale of identity, perception, and race with a literary leitmotif.   

Please register for this event via the Professional Education Portal (PEP) by Monday, October 4.  Select “Go to Calendar” on the PEP’s homepage banner to locate the correct sessinn. Lunch will be provided. Dialogues in Diversity is not a part of the Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion program. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to Paris Lawrence (   

The University’s Signature Lectures Series Continues

The University’s Signature Lectures Series continues this fall with talks from renowned scholars and leaders in the arts, agriculture, business, civil rights, government, the sciences and several other fields. Information on the Fall 2021 Signature Lectures can be found here.

Up Next: "Vaccine Biotech: A Journey from South Georgia to Virology to Silicon Valley" with Martin Moore, CEO of Meissa Vaccines
Dr. Young presenting in a breakout session at the 2021 State of the Public’s Health (SOPH) Conference.

The SOPH Conference at the University of Georgia is an annual gathering focused on fostering meaningful, constructive dialogue and practical solutions for Georgia’s public health challenges. This event is organized and hosted by the UGA College of Public Health’s Office of Outreach, Engagement, and Equity.

Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders on COVID-19 and Getting Vaccinated: Results from a National Survey — presented by Juliet Choi, Executive Director of the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum.

Facing Three Salient Challenges in Rural Georgia: Aging, Mental Health, and Management of Chronic Conditions — presented by Lisa Renzi-Hammond, Associate Professor at the UGA College of Public Health, Andrea Scarrow, Southwest District Directo & Henry Young, Associate Professor at the UGA College of Pharmacy.

Public Health Law — presented by Fazal Khan, UGA School of Law.

This year, the conference is on Thursday, October 14, 2021 from 9am to 12pm. It is free and being held virtually. Register here!

HR Information & Reminders

Year-End Leave Balances Reminders

  • Don't forget that faculty and staff who accrue vacation leave, the 360- hour calendar year cap for your vacation balance is in effect.
  • Any vacation hours in excess of 360 hours will be removed if not used by December 31, 2021.

Benefits Open Enrollment — Open Enrollment Period: October 25- November 5.

  • Virtual Benefits Fair: October 25 – October 29.
  • Virtual Office Hours:
    • October 27 – 3:00-5:00pm.
    • November 2 – 9:00-11:00am.
    • November 4 – 3:00-5:00.

Benefits – Spending Account Updates

  • Effective January 1, 2022, HSA Bank will replace OptumBank as the spending account provider for HSA, FSA, DCFSA, and LPFSA.
  • Employees with an HSA balance as of Dec. 31, 2021, will need to approve the transfer of funds to HSA Bank.
  • Contributions beginning Jan. 1 will be remitted to HSA Bank.
    • These are individual accounts and employees must approve liquidation of investments and transfer of funds.
    • Employees will receive a $50 credit once they approve the transfer, and the funds are moved to HSA Bank.
Resources for Teaching and Learning eLC Course

Katie Smith and Russ Palmer from CoP’s IIT Department are developing an eLC course to provide quick access to resources and support documents related to instructional design and SoTL as well as the main teaching and learning tools used by faculty at the College. This course will be developed into a rich repository of relevant resources to provide faculty with an additional layer of assistance and support. All current faculty have been enrolled in the course – click here to access it (and consider bookmarking it for convenience). Please contact Katie or Russ with any questions.

Upcoming events include:

October 14th — Virtual Workshop: Embracing Diversity to Increase Inclusive Teaching Practices.

October 25th — SoTL Colloquium: Knowledge of Learning Makes A Difference

USG Mandatory Cybersecurity Awareness Training

The University System of Georgia requires all of its employees to complete cybersecurity awareness training twice annually, in April and October.

To complete the mandatory October training, log on to the KnowBe4 Portal at  with your UGA MyID and password.

Once on the training homepage, you should see the UGA logo near the upper left portion of the training window, and a course named Security Awareness Fundamentals will be available to you. Click the red “Start” button to begin. To advance through the training, click the “Next” button at the conclusion of each slide. At the end of the training, you will be prompted to take a short quiz. Once your training is complete, you can download a certificate of achievement if desired.

The Security Awareness Fundamentals course should require approximately 15 minutes to complete. The deadline for all faculty, staff, and student employees to complete the training module is October 29, 2021.

Faculty, staff, and student employees who have questions about the training should contact the EITS Help Desk at 542-3106 or e-mail

Position Postings

Current job openings within the College of Pharmacy are listed below. Click the job title for more information.

Post-Doctoral Associate
Pharmacy-Pharm & Biomed Sci

Standardized Patient
Pharmacy-Experiential Programs

Public Service Assistant
Pharmacy-Experiential Programs

Research Technician
Pharmacy-Pharm & Biomed Sci

Postdoctoral Research Associate
Pharmacy-Pharm & Biomed Sci


For a full list of student events, view the DSAC Calendar.
Dialogues in Diversity
12pm-1:30pm | Training & Development Center, Room AB | Contact: Dr. Paris Lawrence

LGBTQ+ Resources at UGA, Presented by Chad Mandala
12:20pm-1:10pm | Join via Zoom | Contact: Dr. Vivia Hill-Silcott

Employer Spotlight Series
6pm | Pharmacy South 220 | ft. Walmart
Managing Stress and Anxiety
7pm | By Appointment | Contact: Dr. Vivia Hill-Silcott

Hispanic Heritage Month Speaker: Dr. Emily Medina
12:20pm-1:10pm | Join via Zoom | Contact: Dr. Vivia Hill-Silcott

Grand Rounds: Bivalirudin Use in Pediatric ECMO Patients
12:10pm-1:10pm | Presenter: Aubrey A. Slaughter
Locations: Augusta 135, Savannah HL2101, Albany ES Conference Room, Athens RC 362 | Zoom Link, Meeting ID: 953 4712 0449, Passcode: 754824
CTL Virtual Workshop: Embracing Diversity to Increase Inclusive Teaching Practives
9:30am-11:00am | Via Zoom | Contact: Dr. Vivia Hill-Silcott

Health Disparities and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Pharmacy Care: Jasper Watkins
6pm | Register in advance for this webinar here. | Contact: Dr. Vivia Hill-Silcott

Have a submission for the PharmDawg Weekly?
Email Lillian Ballance, Public Relations Coordinator.
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