Message from the Dean

Dear Alumni and Friends,

With summer speeding by and the fall semester quickly approaching, we are busily preparing to welcome the Class of 2025. We are also reflecting on the many accomplishments and lessons learned over the past year and looking forward to a school year without the obstacles and restrictions that the pandemic brought our way.

Dean Ronald RaganAs COVID sent so many KU schools and departments home to teach and learn remotely, KU School of Pharmacy students had the opportunity to remain on campus and in pharmacies, hospitals and practice sites throughout the state in the Spring of 2021. As many around us now evaluate the effect of those academic compromises, we are still adding up the lessons our students and faculty have learned over the past year and a half.

I cannot recall a time when pharmacy students had a more dramatic and impactful year of learning. They learned how important their role as a pharmacist is during a health crisis and that sometimes, isolating themselves for their own protection is not a viable option.

The KU School of Pharmacy played a large role in delivering thousands of vaccines throughout Lawrence, Wichita and the entire state of Kansas. In this newsletter, you will read more about that and how Assistant Dean Joe Heidrick stepped up to lead our students, faculty and alumni as they volunteered countless hours to the vaccination effort. I am proud of how enthusiastic and tireless our students, Joe and the many volunteers remained throughout this very long and fast-paced time.

We also hosted several vaccination clinics at the KU School of Pharmacy in Lawrence. Through those clinics, our students and faculty delivered close to 5,000 vaccines to University of Kansas students, faculty and staff. The clinics brought many people into our building for the first time, and I am confident, gave them a much wider view of the pharmacy profession.

As you have likely heard, the University is facing a severe budget crisis as state funding continues to decrease. The School of Pharmacy was hit with a 10% cut in state funding, and unfortunately, we felt the consequences by having to cancel three faculty searches. I have asked Beth Bucklin, our Endowment representative, to help me begin to raise funds to establish additional professorships in our school to help offset some of the damage cuts like we experienced this year can cause. Even with these cuts our school remains strong and vibrant, and the faculty, staff and I are committed to keeping it that way.

I am eager to resume our in-person events this year and to welcome you to campus for events like our annual Dean’s Club Dinner. Your support of the school has never been more important. I hope you will take this opportunity to join the KU School of Pharmacy Dean’s Club.

Thank you, and Rock Chalk, Jayhawk!

Ronald Ragan
Dean, KU School of Pharmacy