Welcome back, Dr. Hedge

Erin Kennedy

Erin Kennedy

Dennis Hedge had a fresh beginning in the new year as he moved from acting dean to the official position of Dean of the College of Pharmacy at SDSU.

“We have a great tradition of academic excellence associated with our pharmacy degree program, and maintaining that excellence will always be a priority,” said Hedge.

Hedge had been working as the acting dean since July 2008 and moved to dean on Dec. 22. Hedge takes the place of Brian Kaatz, who moved to the University of South Dakota to become Dean of the School of Health and Sciences.

“Seeing what Dr. Hedge has done as assistant dean and acting dean for the pharmacy program, we know we can look forward to great things from him in the future,” said Christina Christopher, senior pharmacy student at SDSU.

“Working with Dean Hedge has been great,” said Jolene Landmark, senior secretary of pharmaceutical sciences. “He’s very approachable with any issue, and I believe he will make an excellent dean.”

The dean provides leadership to the College of Pharmacy by working with students, faculty, staff, alumni, administrators and others at SDSU and across the nation to make the pharmacy program the best that it can be. The dean works to educate and ensure that faculty under the College of Pharmacy are doing their best to educate, as well as conduct research and provide service to the public.

“A goal is to elevate the college’s identity both nationally and internationally via an expanding research program and increased scholarship,” said Hedge.

Still, the new dean does not plan to overhaul the whole pharmacy program.

“I do not anticipate major changes [for the pharmacy department]. From an organizational standpoint within the college, a few changes will occur to enhance our overall efficiency in conducting business,” said Hedge.

The College of Pharmacy has been relocated in recent months to the Intramural Building as they await the completion of the Avera Health and Science Center, which is currently under construction. Hedge said that with the completion of the center, the college will at last have a first-class educational home where they can continue to grow. The $51 million Avera Health and Science Center is expected to open in fall 2010.

“With completion of the Avera Health and Science Center, you will see larger pharmacy degree programs, class sizes and a growing doctorate degree program in pharmacy,” said Hedge. “We will also initiate work to elevate our identity on both a national and international stage.”

Hedge began his career at SDSU as the head of the department of pharmacy practice, a position he held for five years. He was promoted to associate dean one year prior to becoming the dean.

Hedge graduated with a doctoral degree in pharmacy in 1991 from the University of Kansas. Afterwards, he completed a clinical pharmacy residency at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis, Mo.

#1.882019:2800523384.JPG:DSC_0008.JPG:Recently appointed Pharmacy Dean Dennis Hedge speaks during the White Coat Ceremony on Jan 23.:Ethan Swanson