University of Waterloo Student Receives the Ontario Pharmacist Association’s 2016 Student of Distinction Award

Toronto, ON (May 30, 2016) – Pharmacy student Jennifer MacKenzie has been named the 2016 Student of Distinction Award winner by the Ontario Pharmacists Association (OPA).The award will be presented on Saturday, June 11, 2016, as part of the Association’s annual conference in Toronto.

“Jennifer MacKenzie’s leadership skills and passion for patient care have set an outstanding example, for both her peers and for practicing pharmacists, of what a pharmacist-in-training can accomplish,” says Dennis Darby, OPA’s CEO. “We are very pleased to be presenting her with this year’s Student of Distinction Award.”

MacKenzie, a fourth-year student at the University of Waterloo School of Pharmacy, credits her co-op work placements with allowing her to expand her clinical skills, giving her insight into the value of advocating for patient care, and exposing her to a variety of patient counselling techniques. They have also helped instill in her an appreciation of professionalism, something she has been eager to share with her fellow students. In 2015, MacKenzie helped implement the Student Professionalism Recognition Committee. This peer-led committee recognizes students who exhibit exceptional professionalism, while addressing questionable or unprofessional behaviour that jeopardizes the pharmacists’ honour code.

In addition to her role on the Student Professionalism Recognition Committee, MacKenzie is also a past president of the Society of Pharmacy Students, and recently served as co-chair of education and competitions for Professional Development Week 2016, an annual conference hosted by the Canadian Association of Pharmacy Students and Interns. MacKenzie also helped organize the Ontario Pharmacy Students Integrative Summit for two years, served as a University of Waterloo Student Ambassador and Rx2016 Recruitment Director, and been a member of the graduation committee, Pharmacy Investment Club, Pharmacy Counselling Group, Drug Information Club, and Journal Club.

“This OPA Student of Distinction Award means that all the support I’ve gotten from my friends and colleagues has shaped me into someone that they can trust as a leader in this profession, which is truly humbling,” says MacKenzie, who is originally from Amherst, NS. “I am very grateful for all the experiences I’ve had as a pharmacy student and look forward to the opportunities that the future holds.”

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. As Canada’s largest advocacy organization, and continuing education and drug information provider for pharmacists, the Association represents pharmacy professionals across Ontario. By leveraging the unique expertise of pharmacy professionals, enabling them to practice to their fullest potential, and making them more accessible to patients, OPA is working to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the healthcare system.

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