Doing Good While Doing Well: One Pharmacy Alumni’s Goal to Support Future Leaders in Practice
Northeastern University is known for providing an education with a future—turning students into community innovators. This was the case for Bouvé alumnus Jason Reiser, who with his wife Jeni created the Jason and Jeni Reiser Fund for Pharmacy Practice Transformation Student Leadership Program in early 2021 with the support of his alma mater, Reiser was able to reach his philanthropic goal. He explained, “I knew what I wanted the results to be; I just didn’t know how to make it happen. With the help of many people at Northeastern University, we crafted a roadmap on how to bring this vision to life.”
Reiser leveraged his experience in the workforce to identify an opportunity to innovate and to craft a solution. The Pharmacy Practice Transformation Student Leadership Program aims to provide Northeastern pharmacy students, preparing them with vital leadership skills needed in the real world. The Program will create and build the infrastructure to launch and sustain a signature student leadership development program at the School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences at Bouvé College of Health Sciences. The Reiser Fund will be used for expenses related to building out the Program, such as providing stipends to students; recruiting of a part-time faculty program manager; and other costs related to organizing and sponsoring seminars, retreats, research symposia or similar events.
Dr. Carmen Sceppa, Dean of Bouvé College of Health Sciences, commends Jason’s generosity and vision, which aligns with her own – which is to shape and drive the transformation of healthcare to healthspan by focusing on wellness (not sickness), on care (not cure).
“Participation in this exciting leadership program will provide a solid foundation for graduates to excel in their chosen roles,“ said Dr. Sceppa. “As clinicians, educators, researchers, advocates, entrepreneurs or policy makers. Like Jason, they will be the next generation of impactful change makers.”
Reiser looks forward to engaging with the Program, thrilled to have this opportunity to give back to his alma mater. He believes soft skills combined with the interpersonal skills he learned in Northeastern’s experiential ecosystem—through co-op and clinical settings – shaped him into the leader he is today. He added, “Many students come to Northeastern for that head start of real-world experience through the co-op program. That gives them a leg-up on other graduates. I want to give them even a bigger leg-up in the grand scheme of things to have a much better quality of life.”
The Program aims to do this by teaching students how to avoid burnout and understand the positive impact a pharmacist can have on people’s lives. Jason continued, “When you’re working with people in this industry, you realize you’re helping them—and they realize they’re helping you while you deliver extraordinary results. In my mind, the definition of success is doing good while doing well.”
“The role of pharmacists in improving patient health care outcomes has become increasingly more important,” said Dr. Miriam A. Mobley Smith, Former Interim Dean, SOPPS. Student pharmacists who become future leaders in practice transformation initiatives will be prepared to continue that trajectory. The Reiser Fund strongly supports that vision and helps to solidify Northeastern, Bouvé College and the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical as a leader in this field. We are indebted to Jason and Jeni for their commitment to our students’ success and, ultimately, the patients they serve.”
Reiser attended Northeastern in the early 1990’s. While a student, he met his wife Jeni who was attending Simmons College. He graduated from the School of Pharmacy and became a Registered Pharmacist in 1993. Jason and Jeni are now the parents of two daughters Madeline and Sophie. He fondly remembers Northeastern Prof Todd Brown and others as well as his community pharmacy co-op at Brattle Pharmacy in Arlington, MA. As a senior, he was thrilled to be inducted into Rho Chi, receiving the “Wall Street Journal Student Achievement Award” at graduation. The plaque with his name hangs in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences halls.
His father Martin Reiser owned a pharmacy in Pennsylvania, and Jason grew up working there, ‘raised’ by both his family and the regular patrons of the business. Interestingly, Reiser’s career has taken a nontraditional path, serving in executive roles in several corporations including, Walmart, The Vitamin Shoppe, Family Dollar Stores and Dollar General. He now serves as President of the Market Performance Group driving strategy and services for manufacturers at retail.
Reiser explained that there are many different avenues graduates can take with a pharmacy degree, but they don’t always know what this boils down to—beyond the science and technical aspect of the job. That’s why he’d like to be an active participant in reaching students to make a difference in their career paths to help them achieve more than they ever imagined.
To learn more about the Pharmacy Practice Transformation Student Leadership Program or if you are a pharmacy student and interesting participating, please contact: