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Caleb Akers has been awarded the Dennis Casey Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Engineering Graduate Student Travel Award. The purpose of this award is to assist a graduate student in the Division of Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Engineering with travel expenses related to attending an AAPS or appropriate alternative scientific meeting. Graduate students benefit significantly by presenting their research at a scientific meeting. In addition to the opportunity to listen to world-renowned scientists, there is the opportunity to meet leaders from industry and academia including alumni of the graduate program in Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Akers earned a BA in Biochemistry and Physics from DePauw University before arriving at the University of Kentucky. In the Pharmaceutical Sciences program, he works in Dr. Daniel Pack’s lab which specializes in gene therapy and gene delivery. Caleb’s work specifically investigates the effects of targeted charged polyplexes on cellular processing. After completing his dissertation, Akers plans to continue in the field of professional research into gene or drug delivery.

We wish to remember and honor those who inhabited this Commonwealth before the arrival of the Europeans. Briefly occupying these lands were the Osage, Wyndott tribe, and Miami peoples. The Adena and Hopewell peoples, who are recognized by the naming of the time period in which they resided here, were here more permanently. Some of their mounds remain in the Lexington area, including at UK’s Adena Park.

In more recent years, the Cherokee occupied southeast Kentucky, the Yuchi southwest Kentucky, the Chickasaw extreme western Kentucky and the Shawnee central Kentucky including what is now the city of Lexington. The Shawnee left when colonization pushed through the Appalachian Mountains. Lower Shawnee Town ceremonial grounds are still visible in Greenup County.

We honor the first inhabitants who were here, respect their culture, and acknowledge the presence of their descendants who are here today in all walks of life including fellow pharmacists and healthcare professionals.