In only its first year as a student organization at the College of Pharmacy, COP's chapter of the College of Psychiatric and Neurologic Pharmacists has made its presence known. Since its founding in July 2015, the CPNP chapter has grown quickly and become involved throughout the community.
Brittney Dewey, Class of 2017, is president and founder of the college's CPNP chapter. According to Dewey, on average, CPNP chapters around the country have about 10 to 15 members. The UA COP chapter has 35 members and achieved this in the group's first year of existence.
Throughout the year, CPNP has built relationships with the National Alliance on Mental Illness and HOPE Incorporated, a peer and family run behavioral health and substance abuse intake and coordination of care agency in Tucson. The student group did one health fair with HOPE Incorporated and has been invited back to work with the agency again.
Two guest speakers and members of NAMI came and spoke at a CPNP meeting about their experience with mental illness. According to Dewey, the patients were very open with their stories. Dewey describes the event as very powerful and impactful.
Just this past semester, CPNP had a successful visit with junior and senior psychology classes at Rincon High School. CPNP members visited at the point in the curriculum when the classes were learning about illnesses, explaing to the high school students about pharmacists and their role.
"I hope our CPNP chpater continues to grow," says Dewey. "I want to see a stronger student presence. I also want CPNP to partner with other student organizations; we are all on the same team and we all have our special interest, but in the end we are trying to achieve the same goal of helping patients."
Photo caption: Members of CPNP stand together at a NAMI event.