Nakesha Spellman shares how her roles within Campbell University College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences are molding her into the student pharmacist she is today and the pharmacist she will be in two short years.
Nakesha Spellman is pursuing the PharmD/MSCR dual degree program at Campbell University and is currently employed with CVS Pharmacy as part of the COVID-19 Vaccine Support Team. This position allows Nakesha to contribute to vaccination efforts across communities in North Carolina.
Why Campbell Pharmacy?
Nakesha chose Campbell Pharmacy because of the family-like atmosphere she felt from the faculty, staff and students during the application process. Campbell also provided her the opportunity to obtain a Master of Science in Clinical Research simultaneously with the Doctor of Pharmacy degree. At Campbell, Nakesha has received great mentorship, honed her leadership skills and been very involved in various organizations.
Nakesha is from “the Two-Five-Two.” She was born and raised in Elizabeth City, North Carolina by Mr. and Mrs. Tyronne Spellman. She has one sister, Dr. Connie Reliford (Leonard), two nieces (Jaylen and Kennedy), and one nephew (Jordan). In her spare time, she loves to spend time with her family, friends, and her four German Rottweilers: Bella, Keach, MAN-GO, and Meiko Rose.
Nakesha is a 2016 biology graduate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After obtaining her undergraduate degree, Nakesha had the pleasure of working within the clinical research industry before joining the Campbell PharmD/MSCR program. Since joining Campbell, Nakesha has been highly engaged in various organizations including, Graduate Clinical Research Organization (Dual Student Liaison), Student Affiliate of the National Pharmaceutical Association (Mental Health Initiative Chair), Industry Pharmacy Organization (member), American Pharmacists Association (member), CPHS Student Ambassador President, CPHS Diversity and Inclusion Committee Member, and the Dedication to Representation Community (Chair).
While at Campbell, Ms. Spellman continues to volunteer in the community, both domestically (e.g., Script for Your Future, Relay for Life, Telehealth Clinics) and internationally (Santo Domingo – Medical Mission Trip). In addition, she has had the opportunity to obtain pharmacy internships with Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Nakesha has also won several awards from the Phi Lambda Sigma Leadership Society including Student of the Month (August 2020), and Student Leader Award, Outstanding Co-Chair Award for SNPhA Mental Health Initiative, and the Emerging Student Leader – Excellence Awards for CPHS.
“Nakesha hopes to leave a legacy that will inspire all, especially young black kings and queens that they can be anything that they want to be in life.”
More About Nakesha:
Nakesha believes that all of her various roles within CPHS are truly molding her into the student pharmacist she is today and the pharmacist she will be in two short years. She is forever grateful that she was entrusted with these various leadership roles.
One of Nakesha’s current roles is her service as the chair for the Dedication to Representation (D2R) community. D2R is a community that provides the minority students of all CPHS programs an opportunity to connect and grow professionally as a minority in the healthcare field. The purpose of D2R is to empower and express the importance of representation among the various programs within CPHS. As we all know, some leadership roles come with challenges. The Chair of the Dedication to Representation committee is one of the most challenging leadership roles that Nakesha has held. According to Nakesha, what made this leadership role challenging were the two pandemics that occurred in 2020: COVID-19 and racism.
As a young black woman in America, the year 2020 was very challenging for her, as it was for many others. Not only did she deal with family members fighting (and some succumbing to) the COVID-19 virus, but she had to witness the racism that was spreading like wildfire throughout the United States. This was unfortunately through the deaths of many, such as Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks and many more.
Nakesha turned this pain into purpose. She embraced the leadership role in the Dedication to Representation community and hosted various events to spread the importance of diversity within the healthcare profession. In honor of Black History Month, Nakesha will be hosting various events to celebrate, remember, and expand the knowledge of the importance of Black History (formerly “Negro History Week” 45 years ago). She will host Campbell University’s first virtual vigil to honor black lives lost to systemic oppression as we move towards racial equality. During this event, CPHS faculty and students, as well as individuals from the community, will participate through speech, prayer, dance, music, and much more. In the words of Nakesha, “During this time, we will not only remember the lives lost, but we will also begin to take a step towards action.”
Nakesha hopes to leave a legacy that will inspire all, especially young black kings and queens that they can be anything that they want to be in life. With hard work and dedication, anything is attainable. Nakesha reminds us it is crucial that through your success (and failures), you remain humble, pray, and continue to treat others as you would want them to treat you—as this is the way of Christ. “If you have a passion for it and your heart is truly in it, put your mind to it and do it!” – Nakesha Spellman
The Campbell Difference:
Nakesha believes that the professors and leadership of Campbell graduate and professional programs are always rooting for the students, which is essential for the success of a student. In addition, she believes that the leadership of CPHS is always willing to listen and learn from their students.