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The Exceptional Merit Grant Award: Pharmacy

by Leilani Sigsbey
Student Marketing and Communication Assistant
The Ferris Foundation

Dr., Kim Hancock

Dr. Kim Hancock

The global supply chain for pharmaceutical drug products is rapidly changing. Companies are increasing domestic production of these products. With this rapid shift, comes a shortage in well-trained regulatory affairs and compliance professionals in the United States.  

Dr. Kim Hancock, professor of pharmaceuticals at Ferris State University, is seeking a solution. Her proposal: To develop an elective class for students enrolled in the Pharmacy program, focused on pharmaceutical and biotechnology regulatory affairs.  

Having grown up with a strong interest in science Hancock began to explore the pharmaceutical field at an early age, later pursuing a pharmaceutical major at Ferris. She has always had a passion that only grew while attending Ferris. Currently working at the university, Hancock comments, “I’m a Bulldog, through and through."  

Spurred by the supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19, which resulted in delays and issues with raw materials and manufacturing quality of pharmaceutical supplies, Victor Swaminathan R. Ph., a Ferris Pharmacy alum, contacted Dr. Hancock. They discovered that there is a high demand for those with a background in FDA Regulatory Affairs to work in pharmaceutical career paths in the United States.  

Through a collaborative effort between Dr. Hancock and Dr. Swaminathan, a proposal for a certificate focused on FDA Regulatory Affairs at Ferris was developed. To meet the demand for individuals in this field, this training will provide graduate students with a certificate in FDA Regulatory Affairs.  

To create this learning opportunity, Dr. Hancock was awarded The Ferris Foundation Exceptional Merit Grant to assist with the costs of instructor training for the class. 

As pharmaceuticals are increasingly moving toward unconventional career paths, allowing graduates to participate in a certificate program would open countless doors for them. Careers in regulatory affairs and compliance are intellectually rewarding, well paid, and in demand. By offering this certificate, Ferris can continue to serve the rapidly changing global economy.  

Dr. Hancock took the lead role in this project, when approaching the board of The Ferris Foundation. Having the opportunity to improve her teaching and give back to her students demonstrates the university's values.

As a Ferris faculty member and loyal donor to the university, being awarded this merit grant award was a surreal moment for her: "This award shows the board’s commitment to the faculty members and the things they are passionate about,” she says.