Newsroom interviews Amy Krammer

Amy was recently named a dual winer of the University of Otago Division of Health Sciences Premier Undergraduate Prize.

The award acknowledges their outstanding academic, cultural and extra-curricular accomplishments during their undergraduate degrees which they completed in 2023. Amy shares this special occasion with Lizzie Stevenson.

Q. How do you feel about winning the prize? 

A. I was genuinely surprised when I first learned that I had been awarded the prize. I was completely unaware that the School of Pharmacy had nominated me for such a prestigious honour, so receiving it was both unexpected but truly humbling. Advocating for the pharmacy profession as well as my Japanese heritage and culture are significant passions of mine, so I am extremely grateful to have been recognised for these efforts.

Q. What did you do to win the prize?

A. One of my most significant contributions during university was being involved in the International Pharmaceutical Students Federation (IPSF), the world’s largest advocacy group for pharmacy students and recent graduates.

    Since my second year, I've been actively engaged with IPSF, serving in various capacities, with my most notable role being the Regional Secretary of the Asia Pacific Regional Office (APRO), representing approximately 100,000 students from 35 associations across 22 different countries. My main responsibilities ranged from ensuring the smooth running of the regional office, managing the APRO subcommittees and leading the advocacy of the region through policy writings, inter-regional collaborations as well as hosting an advocacy and policy paper competition.

    Last year, I also had the privilege of organising an international assembly in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, where the APRO associations came together for the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic to discuss important matters for our region. It was rewarding to finally meet people face to face, and I was fascinated at seeing everyone’s passion for pharmacy as young students which gave me hope for our profession’s future.

    Additionally, I served as the Vice president of the Otago Japanese Students’ Association (OJSA) in 2022. One of our main goals as a club was to offer a community where anyone with an interest in Japanese culture could meet and form new connections. The COVID-19 pandemic caused many disruptions to student associations during its first few years, which made us even more determined to ensure we could create these opportunities for students to connect. We hosted weekly events, organised several collaborations with other clubs and established a relationship with the Language Centre to connect with Japanese language exchange students. We were incredibly grateful to have our efforts recognised at that year’s Otago Blues and Golds award where we were honoured to receive the Highly Commended Award for Best Cultural Club.

    Q. Why did you choose pharmacy as your career?

    A. I first became interested in pharmacy during high school after talking to several pharmacists and visiting my local hospital pharmacy. The idea of being one of the first health professionals people seek when they have concerns about their health deeply resonated with me. Witnessing the profound impact pharmacists have on patient’s health and the trust placed in them by their patients is also incredibly fulfilling. The opportunity to have such a pivotal role in improving patient wellbeing is truly inspiring and has ignited my passion for the pharmacy profession.

      Q. What do you want to achieve in pharmacy?

      A. In pharmacy, my overarching goal is to evolve into a well-rounded pharmacist, drawing from the extensive knowledge and experience shared by my fellow pharmacists who are passionate about providing patient centered care and forming close connections with their community. I also have a keen interest in mental health and neurodegenerative diseases, and I eventually hope to contribute to research in this area in the future.

        Q. How far along are you in your pharmacy career?

        A. I graduated from the University of Otago in December last year. I am currently interning in my hometown at Nelson Hospital for 2024.

          Q. Any Other words?

          A. Thank you PSNZ for having this interview with me! I look forward to the rest of my internship and am grateful for all that you do for the pharmacy profession here in New Zealand.