School of Pharmacy gala to raise funds for Huntington City Mission

Caroline Kimbro, Reporter

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October is American Pharmacists Month and the Marshall University School of Pharmacy is ready to celebrate. The Queen of Hearts Gala, presented by the Marshall University Student Society of Health Systems and Pharmacists and the Student Executive Council, will begin at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena to raise funds for the Huntington City Mission and bring the community together.

Brittany Messer, a third-year pharmacy student and chair of the event, said the gala is an opportunity for the pharmacy community to engage with Huntington locals in a night of dancing and networking.

“It’s really fun,” Messer said. “It’s mainly a networking opportunity, but it’s for a good cause. It’s just another way to bring the Marshall family together.”

Messer said the event will include light refreshments, a cash bar, and a raffle. She noted that students, faculty, local pharmacists and other healthcare providers in the community typically attend the event.

Messer is president of the Marshall University Student Society of Health Systems and Pharmacists, which provides professional development workshops, assists students with research opportunities and offers information about clinical pharmacy.

Messer said the society also conducts health fairs each semester at the Huntington City Mission. She noted this event is one of the ways the society is able to support the Huntington community.

“I would like to bring awareness to the fact that the Huntington City Mission is here and it needs help,” Messer said. “There’s a lot of great causes in the community but that’s one that’s really special to us.”

Leah Payne, director of public affairs at the Schools of Medicine and Pharmacy, echoed Messer’s concern for the Huntington community’s health and well-being.

“Community involvement is a key pillar of the school of pharmacy’s commitment to our region,” Payne said. “Our dedication to public health issues in the region remains steadfast whether it’s teaching school children about safe medication usage, naloxone training at the health department or outreach at senior events, we’re grateful for the opportunities to assist.”

Messer said the funds raised at the event will help the Huntington City Mission provide for the physical needs of those in the Huntington community through personal hygiene products, food and more.

Messer said their committee is expecting around 75 attendees, but guests are still able to purchase tickets online through Eventbrite and by cash or check at the gala. Tickets are $20 for individual admission and $35 for couples.

Caroline Kimbro can be contacted at [email protected]