When the University of Bridgeport (UB) and UConn inked a deal that aims to increase diversity at UConn’s School of Pharmacy, it was hailed as a unique partnership between a public and private university. The plan was named the UConn/UB Pre-Pharmacy Program, and it allows UB students to complete training at UB before continuing their studies toward a graduate degree at UConn.

Now the collaborative venture, which was officially launched in June 2010, has come to fruition, say officials, who on Thursday announced that the first UB student from the Pre-Pharmacy Program has qualified for UConn’s School of Pharmacy.

Arnold Hitoaliaj completed the first two years of the Pre-Pharmacy Program at UB’s main campus in Bridgeport will begin studies at UConn in Storrs, CT, this fall toward a Doctorate in Pharmacy.

“Arnold is the first of many quality students from diverse backgrounds that we hope to send to the UConn School of Pharmacy,” said UB Vice Provost of Health Sciences Dr. David M. Brady. “It is wonderful to see this collaboration, which stared several years ago as a way for UB could help UConn recruit excellent candidates from backgrounds that are under-represented into the pharmacy field, finally bearing fruit.”

The program allows students to complete a two-year pre-pharmacy program at UB, where they take courses in the basic sciences and the liberal arts. Those who successfully complete the work are then eligible to apply to UConn, where they earn a Bachelor of Pharmacy Studies in their second year and the Doctor of Pharmacy two years after that.

Hitoaliaj, from Bridgeport, is a graduate of Central Magnet High School.

“Arnold’s hard work in this unique program brings to fruition the cooperative work of our two institutions,” noted Steven Healey, UB’s dean of Arts and Sciences. “Programs of this sort are maintained by a combination of good will and hard work. I have been constantly impressed by collegial interactions with Deans Robert McCarthy and Andrea Hubbard, who are committed to furthering the goals of this program.”
UB Media Contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, lgeary@bridgeport.edu