Yes, Lily Truong’s relationship with her sister (who was diagnosed with lupus) and her sister’s pharmacist inspired the rising fourth-year College of Pharmacy student to pursue her profession. But to be completely honest, the Sarasota, Florida native thought that attending Kent State University and Northeast Ohio Medical University would also give her a good chance to experience cold weather. (Mission accomplished.)
As she prepares to complete her final year of pharmacy school, Truong has been reflecting on her time at NEOMED.
“I’m really glad that I chose NEOMED because of the connections and relationships I’ve developed with the faculty, staff and students. It’s been a second home to me, especially being away from my mom in Florida,” says Truong.
One aspect of her NEOMED experience has been especially memorable: student organizations. Over the past three years, Truong has served as a member and/or leader for the University’s Student Society of Health-System Pharmacists chapter, Kappa Psi, Phi Lambda Sigma, Pediatric Pharmacy Advocacy Group, and the Financially Fit Future Pharmacists Club.
It was through SSHP that Truong became involved on the state level with the Ohio Society of Health-System Pharmacists. This year, she served as NEOMED SSHP’s student representative. She was selected and awarded the 2019 OSHP Student Scholarship.
“These organizations helped me develop confidence and my sense of self. They’ve helped me find my voice and who I am. I had never been involved in student orgs before. When I came to NEOMED, I decided I was going to change and make an effort to do all these things. I’m really glad I did because now I feel connected to the community that has grown around me,” she says.
Through her self-reflection, Truong has also recognized the value of the relationships she’s developed at the University. She offers a little advice to incoming students:
“Knowing that our time on campus is coming to a close is almost heartbreaking. We always show up and go to class every morning. Knowing that I won’t see my friends every day now is kind of sad. We spend 80% of our time on campus, whether we’re in class, studying or eating. You often don’t realize how big of an impact it makes until it’s too late,” explains Truong.
Her words to first-, second- and third-year College of Pharmacy students?
“I know you’re probably stressed right now, but really try to make an effort to enjoy what you’re going through. Time goes by faster than you think.”
To quote Andy Bernard from the NBC series “The Office”, Truong shares, “I wish there was a way to know that you’re in the good ole’ days, before you’ve actually left them.”