Ribbon-cutting celebrates new name and more space for FDU’s pharmacy school

Pharmacy third floor ribbon cut 2016

Celebrating the newly-named School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences are (L to R): Senior Vice President for University Advancement Richard Reiss, University Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Gillian Small, School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences Dean Michael Avaltroni, Chairman of the Board of Trustees Patrick J. Zenner and University President Christopher A. Capuano. (Photo by Bill Blanchard)


By Kenna Caprio

At Academic Convocation 2016, Fairleigh Dickinson University President Christopher A. Capuano announced two big updates for the pharmacy school: a name change, and a facilities expansion.

“Effective immediately, our School of Pharmacy, home to one of only two doctoral programs in pharmacy in the state of New Jersey, will become the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences,” said Capuano.

New pharma study space group

Above, students stretch out in their new third floor study space in the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Pictured are: Brianna Leahy, Tiffany Taylor, Saajan Shah, Jigur Amin, Kalliope Damalas and Kristin Blankinship. (Photo by Dan Landau)


“In addition to the Doctor of Pharmacy,” he added, “the Master of Health Science and, eventually the Doctor of Physical Therapy and Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies, will be added as new programming in the expanded school. The Henry P. Becton School of Nursing and Allied Health will join the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in offering undergraduate and graduate programming in nursing within our health science facility in Florham Park.”

Following the Convocation ceremony, members of the FDU community attended a reception and ribbon-cutting event at the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

New pharma lab

Above, students conduct assessments in the Patient Assessment Laboratory on the third floor of the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Pictured are: Kristin Blankinship, Brianna Leahy, Kalliope Damalas and Jigur Amin. (Photo by Dan Landau)


Guests were able to tour the new facilities, which include an interprofessional simulation laboratory, a patient assessment laboratory, active learning classrooms, student study and social space and a simulated human cadaver lab.

School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences Dean Michael Avaltroni called the focus on interprofessional education “a new paradigm for healthcare education.” Faculty at the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences are thinking about “how to educate students not just today, but five or ten years down the line.”

The new space adds an additional 23,000 square feet to the health science facility.

New pharma classroom

Above, a new classroom on the third floor of the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. (Photo by Dan Landau)


“Tables have replaced the tiered lecture hall-style, as we acknowledge that no two students learn the same way,” said Avaltroni. “By integrating iPads and smart boards, students are learning in a truly immersive environment.”

Students and faculty are already making use of the new space, with classes set in the various labs for the Fall 2016 semester.

“It’s a new chapter in University history, and this is a University space for all partners and all programs,” said Capuano.

A $2.8 million dollar grant from the state of New Jersey supported the build-out of the third floor.