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Unique Partnership with Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation Yields National Recognition for UofSC Pharmacy Students

Six Nephron Based Student Teams Selected to Present Findings at ASHP National Conference

Posted on: October 28, 2019

 A year old internship partnership between the University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy and Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation has attracted national attention from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) resulting in nationally competitive invitations for six UofSC - Nephron internship teams to deliver poster presentations at the ASHP Midyear Conference in Las Vegas, December 8 – 12. The ASHP Midyear meeting is the largest gathering of pharmacists in the world with more than 25,000 pharmacists from many countries in attendance.

What makes ASHP’s announcement particularly significant, according to Clinical Assistant Professor and Nephron Internship Director Dr. Michaela Almgren is that multiple teams were selected from the same industry site. One of the selected teams worked alongside students from the UofSC College of Engineering, an experience Almgren cites as an extremely valuable lesson in communication and collaboration. Additionally, the findings of the six teams extend beyond research observations to offer actual solutions to current industry problems. Many of the findings have been implemented at Nephron’s West Columbia based manufacturing facility.  

Selected poster titles include:

  • College of Pharmacy and School of Engineering Student Teams’ collaborate to design pharmacy compounding system using robotic arm to perform aseptic syringe filling.
  • Incidence and clinical impact of particulate matter in injectable drug products.
  • Performance comparison of the Baxter repeater pump and the Masterflex peristaltic pump using high flow tubing set L/S 24.
  • Development of the Masterflex L/S peristaltic pump process validation in a 503B outsourcing pharmacy.
  • Evaluation of naloxone safety training effectiveness in a workplace environment.
  • Evaluation of cleaning effectiveness of 7.8% ionized hydrogen peroxide mist versus 7.8% hydrogen peroxide mist in a cleanroom environment.

What the students have learned is real life applicable whether they go to work for Nephron, another company or start their own business.

Dr. Michaela Almgren, Clinical Assistant Professor, Nephron Internship Director

“The success of the student teams is very, very important and unique,” said Almgren. “In addition to giving students an opportunity to present their findings to diverse audiences at ASHP Midyear, their findings are now applied to manufacturing practice. What the students have learned is real life applicable whether they go to work for Nephron, another company or start their own business. This internship experience has opened their eyes to a whole world of pharmacy they were completely unaware of. A number of my interns are now considering industry as a career choice after graduation. We are thankful to the Kennedys and Nephron as well as the Nephron team of employees who helped and coached the students.”

College of Pharmacy Dean Stephen J. Cutler said, “Bill and Lou are redefining what it means to be transformational philanthropists. They continue to exceed expectations as our advocates, fellow educators, innovation partners and friends. They selflessly share their strengths and wisdom with our students and remain intensely committed to their welfare. I call this ultimate generosity.”

Nephron’s CEO and owner Lou Kennedy responded, “Nephron interns, including those who are students at the university, are among the brightest rising stars in pharmaceutical manufacturing,” said Kennedy. “The work they are doing for Nephron has played a critical role in our growth, and we are proud that they will share their work with industry experts and leaders.”

Above: An interdisciplinary team of pharmacy and engineering students collaborated to design a pharmacy compounding system using a Yaskawa robotic arm to perform aseptic syringe filling. First Row: engineering student Wyatt Jones, pharmacy students Kristen Kilby, Alexis Caronis. Second row: Dr. Michaela Almgren and pharmacy students Caroline Hansen and Ryan McCormick.
For additional information, contact Terry Dixon at (803) 777 – 5426 or

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