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CUSP Launches Selective Fellowship with Amgen Inc., Focusing on Cancer Research

A graduate of Chapman University’s School of Pharmacy is the inaugural recipient of a fellowship created to help recent graduates transition into the pharmaceutical industry. After an intensive selection process, Priya Patel, Chapman CUSP Pharm.D. graduate ’19, has been chosen as the inaugural fellow of the Chapman-Amgen Oncology Medical Affairs Post-doctoral Fellowship. Patel was selected from among numerous applicants from academic institutions across the country by both the Amgen and Chapman interviewers.

Patel will spend the first six months of her fellowship with CUSP to focus on clinical oncology care in both adult and pediatric populations. While at CUSP, Patel will spend four days each week at two separate practice sites: Hematology Oncology Medical Group of Orange County and Children’s Hospital of Orange County. Additionally, Patel will participate in the CUSP Teaching Certificate Program and in 2020 she will work closely with professors to facilitate student learning and develop student activities in the Hematology-Oncology course. Then, Patel will relocate to Amgen Inc. at Thousand Oaks, Calif., and spend the next 18 months focusing on medical affairs to complete her fellowship.

“I’m very excited to be the first fellow of this program. Through this fellowship, I will gain clinical training in the field of oncology and exposure to the various aspects within medical affairs. I additionally look forward to obtaining a teaching certificate through Chapman University School of Pharmacy (CUSP). I hope to utilize my experiences during this program to become a competent and reliable pharmacist in the biopharmaceutical industry,” says Patel.

The Value of Fellowships

“Fellowships that offer specialization opportunities to graduates are a badge of honor for schools of pharmacy. Only the best programs with the best faculty are able to land and sustain these relationships,” says Ron Jordan, Dean of the School of Pharmacy. “We are grateful to CUSP faculty members Dr. Wong and Dr. Yang for working to make this opportunity possible for students in the profession. Opportunities to improve pharmacists’ contributions to the industry and health care are critical to ensuring that pharmacists continue to help people live healthier better lives.”

Chapman University School of Pharmacy’s Department of Pharmacy Practice partnered with Amgen Inc. to create the Oncology Medical Affairs Post-doctoral Fellowship. The program is co-directed by Dr. Siu Fun Wong, Associate Dean of Assessment and Professor with CUSP, and Dr. Coco Yang, Assistant Professor with CUSP.

“The fellowship idea started with a casual conversation regarding the challenge of finding well-trained pharmacists to employ in the medical affairs division. I suggested the use of fellowships as a form of mentorship, which led to the birth of this Chapman-Amgen fellowship,” says Wong.

Training Next-Gen Pharmacists

The innovative partnership is a milestone for CUSP, established in 2013 to develop the next generation of pharmacists through engaging in team-based, patient safety-focused health care and conducting transformative research.

“This fellowship serves to bridge the transition of student pharmacists in the field of pharmaceutical industry. This fellowship program was uniquely designed to include six months of focused oncology clinical care training as a prelude to enhance the progression of the fellow as they enter their medical affairs training phase. This is an opportunity for Chapman to promote successful connections with external stakeholders, such as the pharmaceutical industry, and this opportunity will afford limitless opportunities for networking, community engagement, and investments, both intellectual and financial” says Dr. Wong.




Stephanie House