A decade of dynamic growth
Gozzo chats with an '05 grad
The new millennium has been a time of exceptional strategic growth for ACPHS under
the leadership of President James J. Gozzo, Ph.D.
In 2000, the College expanded for the first time into a second building - the Classroom
Building and attached gymnasium in the former Christian Brothers Academy facilities.
Also new this decade: the cutting-edge Pharmaceutical Research Institute, two on-campus
residence halls, a state-of-the-art Pharmacy Practice Lab and, in the fall of 2006,
the Research Institute for Health Outcomes and spectacular ACPHS Student Center.
The 2000s have seen a tremendous expansion in academic offerings as well as the
College enters a new era in health care with a focus not only on pharmacy, but also
on pharmaceutical sciences, biomedical technology and research. In 1881, the College
began with a faculty of three teaching only four courses. Now, more than a century
and a quarter later, there are more than 80 full-time faculty teaching more than
A pharmacy lab session, 2005
The Pharmacy degree has gone from the two-year Ph.G. (Graduate in Pharmacy) offered
in 1881 to the current six-year Pharm.D. The last Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy
degrees at ACPHS were granted in 2004 following the American Council of Pharmaceutical
Education decree that it would grant accreditation to Pharm.D. programs only.
ACPHS developed new programs at the start of the decade to complement the Pharm.D.
and diversify the academic environment. New additions were Bachelor of Science degrees
in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Biomedical Technology (the latter with concentrations
in Cytotechnology and Clinical Laboratory Sciences), and a one-year certificate
program in Cytotechnology.
In conjunction with Albany Medical College, a new Physician Assistant Studies option
was added for the fall of 2006, allowing combined acceptance into ACPHS's B.S. in
Biomedical Technology and Albany Med's Master's-level PA program.
Other degrees new this decade include the joint B.S./J.D. 3+3 program with Albany
Law School, in which students spend three years at ACPHS and three years at the
neighboring law school to earn a B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences and a law degree,
and the Early Assurance program for medical school with Albany Med, again a joint
program through ACPHS's B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences. The College also offers
MBA and M.S. programs in conjunction with Union College .
ACPHS also has expanded the cultural horizons for students, adding international
experiences for students going into their sixth year in the Pharm.D. program.
In 2001, the first two students headed to Hiroshima , Japan , for an internship
at Maruzen Research and Development Center , a pharmaceutical company that focuses
on natural product extraction, purification, analysis and identification. A new
clerkship rotation in Basel , Switzerland - a city sometimes referred to as the
Pharmacy Capital of the World - was added in 2005.
ACPHS's phenomenal physical growth during this decade kicked off with the $4 million
renovation of the former Christian Brothers Academy main building in 2000 to create
the Classroom Building . This facility provides academic offices and classroom space,
with the bottom floor housing a fitness center. That same year, the attached gymnasium
opened as well. It was rechristened the Albert M. White Gymnasium in October 2005
in honor of the beloved former associate dean of student affairs. Sadly, Dean White
died in July 2006 at age 80.
The newest addition to ACPHS's flagship 1927 O'Brien Building, the east addition
housing the administrative and library facilities, got a new identity in November
2000 when it was named in honor of Rudolph H. Blythe '31, who pioneered the technology
for time-release capsules during a superlative career in pharmaceutical research.
Throop Pharmacy Museum
Also that year, the College doubled the size of its library thanks to a generous
gift from the foundation of the late George '28 and Leona Lewis; the expanded library
now bears the Lewis' name. That project also allowed the College to move the historic
Throop Pharmacy Museum to a more prominent location at the top of the stairs at
the main entrance to the O'Brien Building.
A new state-of-the-art Pharmacy Practice Lab debuted in 2003 in the building's former
gym, one floor below the relocated Throop. The multi-purpose facility, which added
the historically minded James J. Morrissey '65 Gallery in 2006 thanks in large part
to the efforts of members of the Class of 1965, prepares students for innovative
pharmacy practice and features a fully equipped pharmacy and private rooms to train
students in counseling services.
Mousa and students at PRI
Also in 2003, ACPHS opened its cutting-edge Pharmaceutical Research Institute in
the former Bender Hygienic Laboratories on Samaritan Road , on the south edge of
campus. Under the direction of Shaker A. Mousa, Ph.D., PRI focuses on research and
development in drug discovery and delivery.
The Institute grew dramatically, from two employees at the end of 2004 to more than
20 and growing at the end of 2006, when it expanded into the new Center for Nanopharmaceutical
Technology in the University at Albany 's East Campus across the Hudson River in
The Center was made possible by a $2 million grant from the New York State Legislature.
It allowed ACPHS to take a leading role in the development of nanopharmaceuticals,
which fuses biotechnology and nanotechnology into an emerging discipline that significantly
will expand the medical community's ability to treat and cure a broad range of disease
states. In addition to the research and development conducted there under the leadership
of Dr. Mousa, the Center allows ACPHS students expanded opportunities to be involved
on the front lines of pharmaceutical R&D.
Though in the beginning of the decade the residence facilities on Holland Avenue
still were operating for freshmen, the first-ever on-campus residence hall, Notre
Dame, opened in 2000, making way for housing for upperclassmen in the Holland Avenue
faculty, Alumni Hall. By 2004, a second on-campus residence hall was added when
the College purchased a facility on Samaritan Road from the Episcopal Diocese of
Albany and established South Hall as a dorm for freshmen, eliminating the need for
the off-campus facilities.
Alumni Hall subsequently was sold as the College consolidated its residence facilities
on campus. Today, more than 800 students live in the two on-campus dorms and in
the University Heights College Suites adjacent to ACPHS.
ACPHS also underwent significant administrative changes in the '00s, beginning when
President Gozzo separated the roles of president and dean for the first time in
the history of the College. Mary H. Andritz, Pharm.D., originally a faculty member
in the Department of Pharmacy Practice, returned to the College in 1999 as assistant
dean for professional affairs. She was named dean in December of that year, just
in time for the first semester of the new century.
Longtime faculty member John Denio was named associate dean of academic and student
affairs upon the retirement of Al White in 2000. Additional administrative and academic
realignment came in 2006 as the College prepared for still more programmatic and
research growth in the future.
A new dean, Mehdi Boroujerdi, Pharm.D., Ph.D., revamped the academic structure to
include four academic departments instead of the previous three: Arts and Sciences,
Health Sciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacy Practice. Other prominent
appointments included the creation of two new associate dean positions: Associate
Professor Angela Dominelli '78, Ph.D., to oversee academic and professional affairs,
and Professor George Bailie, Pharm.D., Ph.D., to oversee research and graduate education.
The College's fraternal organizations continue to be a strong presence at the school.
In 2000, a fifth fraternity was added when Kappa Epsilon, which originally had been
formed in the '90s but had become inactive, was re-chartered. The Alpha Epsilon
chapter of this co-ed professional pharmacy society kicked off its activities with,
among other activities, service projects at nearby Parson's Child and Family Center,
a diabetes walk and the organization's official cause, breast cancer awareness.
The Interfraternity Council remains active and includes members of KE as well as
Kappa Psi, Lambda Kappa Sigma, Phi Delta Chi and Rho Pi Phi. All fraternities participate
in IFC events such as Greek Weekend and all have a busy schedule of both service
and social activities.
The College's two professional pharmacy societies, Rho Chi Honor Society and Phi
Lambda Sigma Leadership Society, have large memberships as well. Inductions to both
take place during Family Weekend in the fall.
Clubs and organizations have mushroomed this decade, with old favorites such as
the Student Government Association, APHA-ASP, Mortar and Pestle , Alembic Pharmakon
, Quilt and Craft Club and Multicultural Club (formerly International Cultural Awareness
Club) joined by many newcomers. The Cytotechnology Club, Cross Country Club, Ultimate
Frisbee Club, Equestrian Club, Singers Group, Dance Team, Orthodox Christian Student
Association and Service Club are all products of the "aughts."
More informal opportunities for relaxation for students have included the Halfway
Party, Countdown Party, All the Way Party, Champagne Breakfast, Springfest and Halloween.
The two big sports at ACPHS during this decade have been basketball and soccer for
both men and women. The women's soccer team brought home Northern Independence Conference
championships in soccer for 2000 and '06 while the men's soccer team had back-to-back
championship seasons in '05 and '06. The women's basketball team won three straight
NIC titles in 2004-06.
ACPHS students also can participate in varsity sports, including football and lacrosse,
at Union College . All sports at Union are NCAA Division III, except the Division
I hockey program.
While students began the decade hanging out in the Panthers' Den in the O'Brien
Building for games of pool, darts and ping pong, a major addition to campus life,
in fall 2006, has been the ACPHS Student Center . At the heart of the expanding
campus, the architecturally striking 54,000-square-foot facility is the crowning
achievement in ACPHS's transformation from a one-building commuter college to a
vibrant, residential institution with an inviting, full-service campus.
Also new in the fall of 2006 was the Research Institute for Health Outcomes to complement
PRI's focus on research and development in drug discovery and delivery. Under the
direction of Department of Pharmacy Practice faculty member Leon E. Cosler, Ph.D.,
RIHO is focused on generating cutting-edge data on the full spectrum of medication
research, development, management and efficacy.
With forward-looking facilities and a revitalized curriculum, the Rx for the next
125 years looks very bright for ACPHS!