School of Pharmacy prepares for new dean

Dean Anderson to step down at end of academic year

On February 10, 2013

  • Wayne Anderson, dean of the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, is stepping down from the position. Provost Charles Zukoski has formed a national search committee to find a replacement. Courtesy of the University at Buffalo

After 18 years at the helm of the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (SoPPS), Dean Wayne Anderson is stepping down. A national search committee is finding his replacement.

Provost Charles Zukoski formed the committee and Dean of the School of Dental Medicine Michael Glick is heading it. It consists of a diverse group of people, including faculty members from both SoPPS and non-SoPPS schools, a Ph.D. student in pharmaceutical sciences and an associate professor from the Roswell Park Graduate Division at UB. Russell Reynolds Associates, a consulting firm, has also been recruited to facilitate the search process. 

Anderson, who is effectively stepping down at the end of the academic year, said SoPPS is in a very strong position to bring in a new dean. It was ranked the 17th-best pharmacy school in America in 2012, according to U.S. News & World Report.

"This is a perfect time to step down from the deanship and allow new leadership to continue our growth," Anderson said in an email. "The school is in a very strong position now − nationally ranked, in a strong fiscal position and growing."

Anderson is carrying on his responsibilities as dean until a new one is found, Zukoski said in a letter addressed to the university community. Zukoski hopes the new dean will be inaugurated before the beginning of the fall, according to UB Reporter. He expects the search to be carried out during the spring semester. Selected candidates will come to UB for campus visits as the semester concludes.

"It might be a good change to have a new dean and maybe change things around," said Diane Yu, a third-year pharmacy student and the president of UB-SNPhA, the UB chapter of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association.

She hopes the new dean will continue to implement the new curriculum for the school's Doctor of Pharmacy Program. Yu also hopes to see Anderson's replacement bring in more scholarships and research opportunities and enhance the already close student-faculty relationship in SoPPS.

"A lot of students need some kind of scholarship help and also it is a way to encourage students to do better in school," Yu explained.

Despite her expectations for the new dean, Yu is appreciative of what Anderson has done. Anderson moved SoPPS to South Campus and established Kapoor Hall, the new pharmacy building that opened during the fall.

Kapoor Hall is designed to serve as a high-tech facility catering to teaching and research demands of SoPPS, the only pharmacy school in the SUNY system. It also provides better connection to the other health sciences buildings on South Campus, as compared to the school's previous home on North Campus.

Anderson considers Kapoor Hall to be one of his biggest achievements.

"He is trying to integrate the School of Pharmacy into the medical buildings," Yu said. "And I really appreciate him for doing that, because as future pharmacists, we are working with doctors, veterinarians or a professional from the medical field."

Now, Yu looks forward to a new leadership era under a different dean.

Meanwhile, Anderson said his plans for a future include "limited time in the classroom" and "some professional activities with national professional associations."

He promises his support to the future dean and hopes he or she will be a "visionary leader who will recognize the talents of [SoPPS] faculty, staff and students."

The search committee includes: Edward Bednarczyk, the chair of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and clinical associate professor; Alice Ceacareanu, assistant professor of pharmacy practice; Lorraine Collins, professor of community health and health behavior professions; Katharina Dittmar de la Cruz, associate professor of biological sciences; Liesl Folks, dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences; Pamela Hershberger, professor of pharmacology and therapeutics; Joseph Izzo Jr., professor of medicine and chief of clinical pharmacology; William Jusko, distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences; Donald Mager, associate professor of pharmaceutical sciences; Davina Porock, professor and associate dean for research and scholarship in the School of Nursing; and Nisha Vijay, Ph.D. student in pharmaceutical sciences and chair of the UB student chapter of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists.

The committee will continue to handle the most vital part of the leadership transition − finding such a "visionary leader" worthy to assume Anderson's role.



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