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By: Isabella Bauer

Isabella BauerIt’s been found that our health increases during the summer due to gene activity, but there’s also an unconventional way to increase health that doesn’t rely on a season change. Two AAPS student chapters opt for this lesser known method of improving their health—generosity.

Generosity has been linked to improving health by lowering stress levels, creating more opportunities for success due to a selfless attitude, and even helping to live longer. AAPS student chapters at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and University of the Pacific (Pacific) were both rewarded for their generosity in helping the AAPS Foundation raise money and awareness for the 30K in 30 Days campaign. So, to learn more about their reasons for helping, the benefits that they’ve received as student chapter members of AAPS, and maybe to learn a trick or two for myself to become healthier in an unconventional way, I contacted student leaders from both chapters to share their insights.

The UCSF student chapter raised the largest sum of donations with a total of $5,300, and Pacific generated donations and awareness from the largest number of donors (39 donors). Both student chapters achieved their goals by using their resources and contacting faculty and alumni. UCSF contacted alumni explaining the fundraising challenge and AAPS Foundation’s mission and vision and Pacific organized a matching game in which faculty agreed to match the total student donations during a game night.

UCSF AAPS student members at annual lab dinner held to thank supportive alumni

UCSF AAPS student members at annual lab dinner held to thank supportive alumni

Pacific AAPS student members at game night

Pacific AAPS student members at game night

In generating funds for the AAPS Foundation and establishing new donors, both UCSF and Pacific supported the 30K in 30 Days campaign, but why were they so motivated to help? “We were very motivated to help raise money because it was an exciting feeling to be able to give back to the AAPS Foundation who have been so supportive of the UCSF student chapter,” explained Rosa Chan from UCSF. As for Pacific, AAPS student chapter members felt a need to give back to the organization as well. “We received support from the AAPS Foundation in the past during our K–12 outreach program…so we thought we should do something to help the AAPS Foundation,” Pacific Student Chapter Chair Yifan Lu expressed.

UCSF and Pacific student chapters worked hard to support AAPS Foundation’s fundraising efforts, but they both agree that they receive major benefits as AAPS members in return. “AAPS established a great platform for academia within the industry to network with experts in pharmaceutical science,” notes Yifan Lu. Expressing similar gratification for the networking opportunities, Rosa Chan describes that “[her] friend and lab mate was able to connect with a scientist from Genentech and form a connection while attending the AAPS conference. This connection has helped her with part of her thesis as a summer internship [and the] unique experience highlights the endless types of opportunities that one could have by networking and exchanging research ideas at AAPS.”

From their commitment to AAPS and their drive to learn from other AAPS members, we can only expect great things from these future pharmaceutical scientists. Thank you UCSF and Pacific student chapters for your efforts in raising donations and awareness for AAPS Foundation’s 30K in 30 Days campaign. I know I’ll be taking your example and using resources that I already have to help achieve fundraising goals. Not only will it help you and your organization of choice succeed, but it might even improve your health too.

Isabella Bauer is a senior at James Madison University and is the AAPS Public Outreach intern.