Remember the Ribbon Chair
Justine Kankam is a fourth-year pharmacy student at Mercer University College of Pharmacy in Atlanta, Georgia. She was born in Mishawaka, Indiana to Ghanaian parents but grew up in Woodstock, Georgia. She comes from a family of pharmacists, but it was not until middle school that she realized the contributions she could make as a pharmacist. The idea that a pharmacist could make the global impact in the right space drew her to this profession.
Justine attended Mercer University and earned a B.S. in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. She then went on to become a “Double Bear” when she joined the Mercer University College of Pharmacy. In the beginning of her P1 year, the members of the Mercer SNPhA chapter welcomed her and showed her the ropes of the pharmacy world. They made it a point to mentor the P1s by making sure they explored different areas of pharmacy and understood the true purpose of our profession. This experience inspired her to make service a core part of her journey as a pharmacist.
During her time in SNPhA, she served as a Remember the Ribbon co-chair. This position motivated her to think big and led to a partnership between Mercer and AID Atlanta to help get students certified in HIV testing. The hope was to give students an extra tool to make a greater impact in our community. She also served as a Mercer SNPhA mentor for P1s to help develop their goals for the future. A program she benefited from so felt it was only right to pay it forward. SNPhA provided an avenue for growth, friendship and lifelong lessons.
In addition to SNPhA, Justine is actively engaged in the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), International Society for Pharmacoeconomics Outcomes Research (ISPOR), and the Georgia Society of Health-System Pharmacists (GSHP). She is also a proud sister of Kappa Epsilon Fraternity, Inc. in which she served as the Inter-Fraternity Council representative and the Council of Students representative for the past two years, respectively. Justine is all about balance and found that this was the key to preventing burnout while in school. This meant making time to catch up on her favorite TV shows, go to brunch with her friends, yoga and many more activities. She also has self-diagnosed wanderlust and is always looking for another place to explore. She has been to several States and Countries but her dream location to explore is Fiji.
Justine deems it an honor and a privilege to be slated the 2019-2020 National Remember the Ribbon chair. She does not take this feat lightly and intends to elevate this position and organization even higher. Creating challenges that bring the topic of HIV/AIDs to the forefront, increasing PrEP education and building new partnerships are but a glimpse of what she has in store for the year ahead. Her mission is to build the L.E.G.A.C.Y of SNPhA as a powerhouse in the fight against HIV/AIDs.