June 3, 2019 (WATERLOO) – University of Waterloo (UW) fourth year pharmacy student, Naushin Hooda, has received the Student of the Year Award from the Ontario Pharmacists Association (OPA). The award will be presented at Pharmacy Experience Pharmacie (PxP) 2019 – a joint conference hosted by OPA and the Canadian Pharmacists Association in Toronto from June 3-5, 2019.

Hooda has been a part of various extra-curricular and community initiatives that demonstrate her excellence in leadership and her passion for the pharmacy profession. She has held a variety of positions including President of the Society of Pharmacy Students (SOPhS), President and Co-Founder of the first student chapter of the Canadian Association of Pharmacy in Oncology (CAPhO), and Senior Education & Outreach Coordinator of the Canadian Association of Pharmacy Students and Interns (CAPSI).

Her work experiences further her involvement in the profession with co-op rotations completed at the Odette Cancer Centre of Sunnybrook Health Sciences in Toronto and the “Two Pharmacy” in Cochrane, Alberta. Hooda’s most recent placement was as a Health and Pharmacy Growth Intern at the Shoppers Drug Mart Head Office in Toronto where she had an integral role in launching the Shoppers Drug Mart Opioid Crisis Support Centre. She is currently completing her clinical rotations at the Manitoulin Health Centre in Little Current, Ontario.

“The student who receives this award is someone who has exhibited strong leadership qualities and a commitment to advancing the profession throughout their academic career,” said Bill Wilson, Interim CEO of OPA. “Naushin’s thorough involvement and exceptional leadership in a variety of pharmaceutical initiatives and programs makes her a more-than-deserving recipient of this award.”

Hooda is an advocate for expanding the scope of pharmacists and has an interest in the movement towards a healthcare system that embraces disruptive innovation, ubiquitous medication safety standards, and translational, high-impact research initiatives that promote patient-centred care and improve patient outcomes. She has gained experience in a variety of pharmacy practice settings and is eager to apply what she’s learned in order to initiate projects that will continue to propel pharmacy and healthcare forward.

The accomplished UW student shares that making an impact continues to be the greatest driver behind her education and career choice. “I’ve always had a passion for pursuing a career that would allow me to have a maximum impact on the greatest number of individuals, which I believe pharmacy continues to provide me,” shared Hooda.

She is also the recipient of multiple awards, including the Canadian Pharmacists’ Association (CPhA) Centennial Leadership Award, Canadian Association of Pharmacy Students and Interns’ (CAPSI) Guy Genest Passion for Pharmacy Award, Canadian Association of Pharmacy in Oncology (CAPhO) Student Award, and the University of Waterloo Faculty of Science G.F. Atikinson Citizenship Award. In addition, her research in oncology pharmacy has been presented at provincial and national conferences, and has since been awarded with the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)/Canadian Society for Pharmaceutical Sciences (CSPS) National Undergraduate Research Award.

OPA’s Annual Awards Ceremony recognizes and acknowledges the significant contributions that are being made by individuals in the pharmacy profession throughout Ontario.

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About the Ontario Pharmacists Association
The Ontario Pharmacists Association is committed to evolving the pharmacy profession and advocating for excellence in practice and patient care. With more than 10,000 members, OPA is Canada’s largest advocacy organization, and professional development and drug information provider for pharmacy professionals across Ontario. By leveraging the unique expertise of pharmacy professionals, enabling them to practise to their fullest potential, and making them more accessible to patients, OPA is working to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the healthcare system. The pharmacy sector plays a strong role in Ontario with an economic impact of more than $6.3 billion across 4,500 pharmacies, employing 60,000 Ontarians.