Olivia Dong, a doctoral candidate in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, is the recipient of a $15,000 Scholar Award from the International Chapter of the P.E.O. Sisterhood for the 2018-19 academic year.
Dong is one of the 100 recipients out of 741 nominees selected to receive a P.E.O Scholar Award, which provides merit-based funding for women in the United States and Canada who are pursuing a doctoral-level degree at an accredited college or university. Chapter CN of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, sponsored her.
Under the guidance of her research adviser, Tim Wiltshire, Ph.D. Dong’s dissertation research focuses on the development of DNA2RxTM, a pharmacogenetic test that provides information for more precise drug prescribing. She is investigating the health and economic benefits of implementing this pharmacogenetic test for patients with coronary artery disease. An American Heart Association Predoctoral Fellowship supports her dissertation research.
Dong earned her bachelor’s degree in nutritional sciences, dietetics from the University of California at Berkeley and a master’s of public health from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She is a registered dietitian and a licensed dietitian nutritionist in the state of North Carolina.
She has won numerous awards for her work in the pharmaceutical sciences, nutrition, and public health fields. She was the recipient of the 2017 Kathryne A. Brewington Graduate Student Research Award from the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, which honors the top doctoral student in the pharmaceutical sciences. In 2016, she received the Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year Award for North Carolina for her leadership in promoting the optimal health and nutritional status of the population. She has been elected into the Delta Omega Public Health Honorary Society and the Frank Porter Graham Graduate and Professional Student Honor Society.
“Members of this organization have shown immense investment in my future success, and it is truly an honor to be part of such a welcoming and supportive group of women,” Dong said. The award will fund career development activities outside of her dissertation research to help her achieve her long-term professional goals.
The P.E.O. Scholar Awards are given to a select group of women for their high level of academic achievement and their potential to have a positive impact on society.
The P.E.O. Sisterhood, founded January 21, 1869, at Iowa Wesleyan College, Mount Pleasant, Iowa, is a philanthropic educational organization dedicated to supporting higher education for women. There are approximately 6,000 local chapters in the United States and Canada with nearly a quarter of a million active members.