The University of Florida has honored Weihsuan “Jenny” Lo-Ciganic, Ph.D., M.S., M.S.Pharm., with the 2020 Excellence Award for Assistant Professors — one of the university’s top awards for a junior faculty member.
Lo-Ciganic serves as an assistant professor of pharmaceutical outcomes and policy in the UF College of Pharmacy. As a pharmacoepidemiologist, her research interests involve drug safety, medication adherence, prescription drug abuse and the quality and value of prescribing, especially among vulnerable or minority populations. She uses her training as a clinician and quantitative researcher to address patient safety and quality of care issues. With machine learning and other advanced analytics, she develops and improves quality measures and risk prediction models. Lo-Ciganic has successfully secured more than $2.6 million in funding as principal investigator or co-principal investigator and has published over 40 manuscripts in top research journals.
As an educator, Lo-Ciganic has excelled in the classroom while teaching in the college’s Pharm.D. and graduate programs. She leads several journal clubs in her department, advises Ph.D. students, serves on dissertation committees and supervises postdocs, interns and Pharm.D. student projects. As a mentor, she has helped graduate students and postdoctoral associates secure employment at pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions, as well as publishing in high-impact journals.
“Dr. Lo-Ciganic has been incredibly successful in her early career, a rising star,” said Julie Johnson, Pharm.D., dean and distinguished professor in the UF College of Pharmacy. “Her research and scholarship is addressing the nation’s opioid crisis by improving drug safety, patient care and health outcomes, and her teaching is advancing the training of the next generation of scientists.”
Prior to joining the UF College of Pharmacy in 2018, Lo-Ciganic worked as an assistant professor at the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy. She has won several career development and new investigator awards, including the 2017 PhRMA Foundation Research Starter Award in Health Outcomes, which allowed her to apply advanced analytics to predict problematic prescription opioid use in Medicare. Lo-Ciganic received her Ph.D. in epidemiology and an M.S. in biostatics from the University of Pittsburgh. She also earned an M.S. in Clinical Pharmacy from the National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan and a B.S. in Pharmacy from the National Taiwan University.
There are more than 500 tenure-track assistant professors at UF, and Lo-Ciganic is one of only 10 to receive a 2020 Excellence Award for Assistant Professors. The award comes with a $5,000 stipend to support research-related expenses such as travel, books, equipment and graduate student salaries.