Meet the 2021 Scholars

Get to know the hopes, dreams, and talents of this year's winners.

Brian D.

Graduate Recipient

"Living through a global pandemic with a chronic illness, what is one piece of inspirational advice that you would give to other students with CF who are in the same or similar position?"

Every day presents challenges and decisions, how we conquer these defines who we are. As students with a chronic illness we are no strangers to the challenges that life presents. These challenges may sometimes be simple tasks of daily life. During a global pandemic, especially one that wreaks havoc on the lungs, the challenges and decisions we face are amplified. I have always done everything in my power to control my illness; this spirit of conquering fear and infection were my guide in handling the pandemic. When the pandemic began, I had a lot of trepidation. Being a healthcare professional in a hospital during this infectious outbreak quickly turned into a fear of the unknown. I feared the potential consequences of contracting the virus, but also felt an intense yearning to help as the healthcare system has always helped me. The struggle I faced daily consisted of performing my job, but also the internal struggle of protecting myself. The decision I made was to continue to perform my duty to patients as a pharmacist. As the vaccine rolled out, I was on the frontlines vaccinating those in my hospital because this was my way to give back and try to defeat an illness that impacted the world. The decisions we make and the way we conquer challenges defines our character. I continued to face fear to provide patient care because when we can help defeat the greatest enemy we have faced, COVID-19, it brings a sense of accomplishment and pride.

Brian D.'s Artwork

Brian D.'s Achievements

  • Pharmacist- UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside—Shadyside Campus: 2015-Present
  • Pharmacy Intern Preceptor: 2018-Present
  • Pennsylvania Pharmacist Association: 2013-Present\
  • Allegheny County Pharmacist Association: 2013-Present
  • Adam Smith Society University of Pittsburgh Katz School of Business-Member: 2020-Present
  • Business Healthcare Club-Member: 2020-Present
  • Miracle League of the South Hills- Volunteer: 2017-Present
  • Cystic Fibrosis Foundation 65 Roses Club-CF Ambassador: 2020-Present
  • ProspHire Healthcare Consulting Case Competition-First place winner in team contest: 2020