By: Bethsy Jacob, PharmD Candidate c/o 2013
On January 24, 2013, Rho Chi Beta Delta Chapter successfully conducted its annual induction ceremony, welcoming forty-four new members into the chapter. Membership was granted to students who ranked in the top 20% of their class. This year’s inductees included 4th and 5th year PharmD students as well as students enrolled in Masters and PhD programs in St. John’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Following tradition, the induction took place at the restaurant Verdi’s of Whitestone, where students and faculty socialized while enjoying dinner. The induction ceremony began at 6:30pm, with Rho Chi president Yining Shao welcoming all attendees. Dr. S. William Zito, the Acting Dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and Faculty Advisor of Rho Chi Honor Society, was also present, among many professors of the college and past Rho Chi E-Board members.
This year, Rho Chi was honored to have Dr. Mansoor Khan as the keynote speaker at induction. Dr. Khan is not only a St. John’s University alumni, but also the current Director of the Division of Product Quality Research for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Dr. Khan earned his Ph.D degree in Industrial Pharmacy from St. John’s School of Pharmacy in 1992. He has published over 215 peer-reviewed manuscripts, five texts, twenty book chapters, and has made over 150 presentations in various national and international meetings. During his speech, Dr. Khan highlighted several key points to the newly inducted students. He started his presentation by promoting the pursuit of “intellectual excellence and critical inquiry,” as stated in the mission of Rho Chi. With pharmacists as influential members of the healthcare industry, it is important that we, as students, maintain these values. Some current challenges that Dr. Khan put into perspective were the changes in pharmacy education and clinical practice, health care reform and costs, and regulation of compounding pharmaceuticals. Such issues and changes make it critical for pharmacists to be constantly abreast of new reforms and regulations that affect patient services.
Following Dr. Khan’s address, the program continued with words from Dr. Zito, who welcomed the new inductees and inspired both current and new members to be actively involved in the Rho Chi organization. New pins were distributed that and served as a reminder to each member of what they promised to uphold— “to adhere to and promote the highest ideals in pharmacy, both scientific and cultural.” The new members underwent the traditional ceremony. In addition, the new 2013 E-Board members were sworn in. The newly inducted E-Board members this year included Moisey Rafailov as President, Majd Ahmad as Vice-President, Elissa Tam as Secretary, Anh Nguyen as Treasurer, and Zinnia Yu as Historian. The room was full of applause as 44 new members were welcomed into the society.
The program came to a pleasant conclusion as the 2012 E-Board presented gifts to Dr. Khan, in appreciation of his attendance and presentation, and to Dr. Zito, for his continued support and advice to the Beta Delta Chapter. Several pictures were also taken to commemorate the special night. Overall, the 2013 induction ceremony was a grand success, with participation of many students and faculty members. It was a great start to a new year for Rho Chi Honor Society, and members are encouraged to be informed of and engaged in the events of this upcoming semester.