You might notice a little more pep in Joseph Washington’s step; upon entering his third year at the Gainesville campus of the University of Florida College of Pharmacy, he carries a new title as the national president-elect of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association, or SNPhA.
Washington has done well in his efforts to address pharmaceutical needs of underrepresented populations in SNPhA’s Gainesville chapter. In his new leadership role, he will have the opportunity to make a national impact. “It is my hope to perpetuate and maximize this organization’s effectiveness and the quality of care we distribute around the world,” Washington said. “Keeping in mind the ideology of Benjamin Franklin: ‘Without words like progress and growth, words like improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.’” Washington will begin his role as SNPhA’s national president in July 2020.
Inspired by his mother, a nurse, he discovered a strong interest in health care early on in life. “What is a stethoscope? Why do you take vitals? Can you take my vitals?” were just a few of the questions he peppered her with. But it wasn’t until he studied chemistry as an undergraduate and served a church mission that he developed a vision of his calling in pharmacy, where he could facilitate the needs of the underserved.
SNPhA is an educational service association of pharmacy students who are concerned about the profession of pharmacy, healthcare issues and the poor minority representation in these areas. SNPhA organizes programs geared toward the improvement of the health, education and social environment of minority communities.