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University of Connecticut Student, Lyla White, Named a University Scholar

Every year, the University Scholars Program offers thirty undergraduate students the opportunity to work on a project related to their individual academic interests. Throughout this process, each University Scholar must work with a three-member academic advisory board. They will work together to develop a thorough plan for completing this project in a way that promotes their academic success. The program is selective, and applicants must demonstrate academic achievement as well as an interest in research across many fields.

White’s University Scholar advisory board consists of Robin Bogner, Professor of Pharmaceutics, Bodhi Chaudhuri, Professor of Pharmaceutics, and Youssef Bessada, Assistant Clinical Professor of Pharmacy Practice. Her project is titled “Development of a Stable Aspirin Suspension.” The purpose of this study is to develop an alternate treatment for patients who are unable to take aspirin pills. White is aiming to develop a liquid-based oral aspirin that will allow more individuals to take the medication pleasantly and successfully.

White was accepted into the University Scholar Program because of her substantial research experience as an undergraduate student. She was designated a Holster Scholar in her freshman year, and she worked on a research project that used 3D printing to personalize medicine tablets for diabetes patients. During her sophomore year, she received a Supply Grant, which she utilized to do a research project that involved analyzing the stability of aspirin tablets that had been packed in amber plastic vials and stored under typical, but not optimal, conditions. She got the SURF Award for this project, which she is utilizing to continue working on it for her Honors Thesis.

White has also been recognized as a University Scholar and nominated for the American Foundation of Pharmaceutical Sciences’ (AFPE) Gateway to Research Award. She has presented her research at two School of Pharmacy Research Symposiums, four Frontiers in Undergraduate Research Exhibitions, the Holster Scholar Symposium, and the CT Pharmacists Association Midwinter Conference. In addition, White has two publications in academic journals for her clinical research and one in UConn Open Commons for her pharmaceutical science research. She will get the Honors Laureate and Babbidge Scholar designations when she graduates in May.

It may be difficult to imagine she has free time, but White is actively involved in a number of clubs and organizations at the School of Pharmacy and around UConn. She is President of the UConn Climbing Team, Co-Founder of the Immunization Committee, Finance Vice President of the American Pharmacists Association, and Chapter Coordinator for the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacists. She also serves on the Curriculum and Wellness Committees, the 2024 Clinical Research Challenge team for the Student College of Clinical Pharmacy (SCCP), the Regulatory Affairs team for the Industry Pharmacists Organization’s (IPhO) VIP Case Competition, and supports younger students as a Peer Allies Through Honors mentor for freshman honors students, a Peer Advisor for the School of Pharmacy, and a School of Pharmacy Ambassador.

“I’m so proud of being selected as a University Scholar,” White said. “Whether my career takes a clinical or research pathway, personal experience with drug discovery and being able to bridge the clinical and pharmaceutical sciences worlds will be invaluable.”

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