Student rewarded for improving campus wellness

    By Bernie Poitras on April 20, 2017

    Second-year pharmacy student Sabrina Lorico was simply fulfilling her role as vice-president, Student Services, organizing events like handing out healthy late night snacks to fellow students or spearheading women’s health initiatives.  

    On World Health Day – April 7 – her hard work and attention to students’ health issues was recognized with a Healthy Campus Unit Award for contributing to a healthy campus and supporting students.

    The award was part of a UAlberta World Health Day celebration, sponsored by the Healthy Campus Unit, LiveWell and Human Resources Services.

    “I was very surprised,” says Lorico, who just finished her role as vice-president, Student Services with the Alberta Pharmacy Students’ Association. “I thought I was just planning events that were fun for students. I didn’t expect to win an award for it.”

    Lorico wasn’t even aware she was nominated. She found out through a video sent to her by the awards committee two weeks ahead of the awards presentation.

    Her interest in planning events and improving student wellness came early in her college career.

    “In my first year, I was part of the Space Committee and I saw what the vice-president, Student Services did, so that sparked my interest in taking on the VP position in my second year,” she says.  

    Lorico’s role included helping organize pancake day for students and raising funds by selling sundaes, and tea and cookies during Pharmacist Awareness Month.

    “These events are very rewarding to me,” says Lorico. “Students love food by donation or even the free events we organized, so I just wanted to plan events that students were interested in.”

    Lorico says engaging in activities is a perfect way for students who are otherwise shy but still want to have a voice in their educational experience.

    “It’s motivating to be able to make change,” she says. “I would say to other students that even if you’re shy, you still have opinions and if you can join a group like this and make your opinions known, it’s a great starting point.”

    Lorico says she plans on continue organizing events and getting involved in student activities.

    “I’m one of the social officers for the Professional Development Week (PDW) 2018 Conference in Edmonton this coming January,” she says.

    The annual conference brings together students from across Canada for four days providing a unique set of educational opportunities for tomorrow’s pharmacists.

    She has already applied her events knowledge and experience to the PDW Organizing Committee. “It’s been a balancing act between a full course load and organizing a conference for 600 people,” she says.

    Lorico says she’s learned a lot from her roles in organizing events that will help her in her pharmacy career.

    “There are a few transferable skills like having strong communication skills, being patient and listening to everyone’s opinion,” she says.