As part of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

All regular full-time departmental faculty in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences are formal members of the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program and can take students into their laboratories if appropriate.

On average, students in this program earn their PhDs in 5.5 years.

The normal requirements for admission to the graduate program in pharmaceutical sciences include a bachelor of arts or science degree from an accredited institution, as well as an academic record which satisfies the minimum admission requirements established by the CU Graduate School. Admissions are for the fall semester only.

An undergraduate degree in pharmacy, chemistry, biology, or chemical engineering is excellent preparation for graduate training in pharmaceutical sciences; however, no specific undergraduate major is required. All applicants for the program should have completed a year of study in the following subjects: general chemistry, organic chemistry, calculus, biology, and physics. In addition, courses in the following subjects will be highly recommended to supplement the student’s background: biochemistry, statistics, cell biology, physical chemistry, computer science, and immunology. Under special circumstances, deficiencies in important areas may be made up within the first year after entrance into the program.

Normally, admission to the program will be dependent upon an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better. Students applying with a GPA less than 3.0 may be considered individually on a provisional basis. If you do not have a degree from a U.S. or Canadian institution, your official transcript will be evaluated by the Office of International Affairs.

The admission deadline for completed applications to be received at the School of Pharmacy is Dec. 1. Given that admission to the program is very competitive, it is impossible to evaluate your qualifications for admission (test scores, grades) until the selection committee assesses the entire applicant pool.

Admission to the program includes financial support via a stipend awarded on a 12-month basis. Based on the rules of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

Although a priority of the School of Pharmacy is to provide financial support to our graduate students, payment of stipend, tuition and any fees by the School of Pharmacy or by grants, contracts or gifts to the School of Pharmacy faculty is contingent upon satisfactory academic progress (as defined by the graduate school’s Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook) and completion of required teaching duties, core courses, research rotations, seminars, and examinations (as listed on the progress report form). We also reserve the right to review and adjust our funding policies at any time. All students are expected to work full-time toward program requirements for 12 months of the year.

Required Pharmaceutical Sciences Program Courses

PHSC 7310Fundamentals of Pharmaceutical Sciences3 credits
PHSC 7320Physical Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences3 credits
PHSC 7400Ethical Issues in Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Sciences1 credit
PHSC 7650Research Rotation in Pharmaceutical Sciences (two required)1 credit
PHSC 7568Seminar in Pharmaceutical Sciences (each semester)1 credit
PHSC 7330Development of Drugs and Biologics2 credits
PHSC 8990Doctoral Thesis≥30 credits

Representative Elective Courses

PHSC 7608Molecular Interactions3 credits
PHSC 7609Biophysics and Spectroscopy2 credits
PHSC 7651/CHEN 5838Pharmaceutical Biotechnology3 credits
PHSC 7345Nanotechnology and Drug Delivery2 credits
PHSC 7353Protein Formulation2 credits
PHSC 7660Liposome-based Drug Delivery2 credits
PHSC 7665Pharmacokinetic Principles and Applications3 credits

Through the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program, our goal is to educate pre-doctoral students to develop independent research careers in pharmaceutical sciences with a basic, clinical or pharmaceutical outcomes emphasis. Upon completion of the graduate program, our students use their training to make a difference in academia, industry or government. The learning objectives for the graduate program are:

  1. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of central concepts in the biomedical sciences.
  2. Understand the current concepts in basic and clinical pharmaceutical sciences.
  3. Read and critically evaluate the scientific literature.
  4. Formulate hypotheses based on current concepts in the field and design, conduct, and interpret their own research projects.
  5. Present research results in peer-reviewed publications and in a dissertation.
  6. Communicate research results effectively through oral presentations at scientific seminars, conferences, and other venues.

School of Pharmacy Graduate Degree Requirements

The following are specific rules approved by the graduate faculty of the School of Pharmacy for graduate studies leading to doctor of philosophy degree in toxicology. All other requirements for these degrees will follow the guidelines of the Graduate School, which can be found in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook. The student carries the major responsibility of meeting the rules of the School of Pharmacy and the Graduate School. Failure to meet the following rules and guidelines may result in delay of graduation. ​


Keisha Alexander

Alexander, Keisha

Kimberly Casalvieri

Casalvieri, Kimberly

Kim Casalvieri is originally from South Brunswick, New Jersey. She received her BS in Biochemistry and BA. in Chemistry from the College of Charleston in 2011. After graduation, she joined the anti-aging skin care platform at Johnson & Johnson Worldwide Consumer Companies assisting in the development of several anti-aging skin care products. From the anti-aging platform, she made the transition to the GMP lab where she used FDA-regulated Good Ma​nufacturing Practices to prepare all documentation for production; order the necessary raw materials; and formulate, package, and label all samples that were then handed off for consumer use, stability, and efficacy testing. She then joined the team of MitoChem Therapeutics at the Medical University of South Carolina in 2012 to assist in the development of a treatment for retinal degenerative diseases. Her role at MitoChem was to develop an eye drop formulation that maintains the stability of the compound and delivers an optimum dose to the retina. In addition, the majority of her efforts were focused on the organic synthesis of novel compounds and prodrug variants of top compounds to be tested in both in vivo and in vitro efficacy models. She joined the Pharmaceutical Sciences program at the University of Colorado in 2015 and has been a member of the Reigan lab since January 2016. Her focus in the Reigan lab is on the development of an isoform- selective RSK kinase inhibitor for the treatment of Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Angela Czaja

Czaja, Angela

Angela Czaja obtained her undergraduate (Biochemistry) and medical degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. She received clinical training in pediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and pediatric critical care at the University of Washington before coming to the University of Colorado. She also has a master of science in Epidemiology. Her current focus is pediatric pharmacoepidemiology, with specific interest in off-label prescribing. For her dissertation work, she is studying the adverse cardiovascular effects of SSRIs, and is involved with various projects through the CER2 network and American Academy of Pediatrics studying the use and safety of medication in the pediatric population.

Aditya Gandhi

Gandhi, Aditya

Aditya Gandhi graduated in 2010 from University of Mumbai, India with a bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy. He then earned a master’s degree in Industrial Pharmacy from St. John’s University, NY. Aditya joined the Pharmaceutical Sciences program at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in August 2013 and works in John Carpenter’s lab. His PhD thesis focuses on characterizing physical stability and aggregation of antibody-drug conjugates.

Mustafa Ibrahim

Ibrahim, Mustafa

Mustafa Ibrahim graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2010 with a BS in chemistry. He then joined an intramural branch of the National Institutes of Health in Phoenix, AZ, where he conducted clinical research in obesity and diabetes etiology. In 2016, he completed his MS degree in pharmaceutics at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. His research focused on cellular modeling of neuropsychiatric disease in the Center for Experimental Drugs and Diagnostics at Massachusetts General Hospital. Mustafa currently conducts research under the mentorship of Dr. Pete Anderson in the clinical pharmacology of antiretroviral drugs for HIV prevention and treatment. He also serves as Chair of the student committee of the Clinical Pharmacology and Translational Research division of AAPS and is a member of the Pharmacometrics focus group steering committee.

Laren Lofchy

Lofchy, Laren

Kris Oreschak

Oreschak, Kris

Kris was born in Tokyo and grew up in Las Vegas. After spending time at Montana State University, he graduated with a BS in Biology from the University of Idaho in 2014. His research focused on the effect of fluoxetine on zebrafish behavior. In 2010, he retired as champion from his family's fantasy baseball league. Kris joined the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2015 to pursue pharmacogenomics research. His thesis work involves investigating the pharmacogenomics of immunosuppressant adverse effects following heart transplantation in Dr. Christina Aquilante's lab.

Scott Pardee

Pardee, Scott

​Scott Pardee graduated from UCLA in 2015 with a BS in Chemistry. Soon after graduation, he returned back to his hometown of Thousand Oaks, California to work for Amgen. There, he joined the large molecule drug product formulation department as an Associate Scientist. For two years, he planned and executed formulation stability studies on multiple protein drugs in the Amgen pipeline. He joined the Pharmaceutical Sciences PhD program in August 2017 and plans to join Dr. Krishna Mallela's lab. He plans to revolve his thesis work around protein stability, specifically the effect of excipient interactions with therapeutic proteins.


Shah, Dinen

Dinen Shah graduated with a Bachelors in Pharmacy from University of Mumbai, India, followed by his MS in Pharmaceutical Sciences from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. He joined the Pharmaceutical Sciences program at the University of Colorado in 2012 to pursue his PhD He works in Dr. Krishna Mallela's lab and his research is focused on using biophysical tools to study therapeutic proteins to better understand the effects of chemical degradation on their structure, stability, aggregation and functional aspects. He also works on understanding the effects of excipients on pharmaceutical formulations.

Stacey Tuey

Tuey, Stacey

Stacey Tuey graduated from Cal Poly Pomona in 2013 with a BS in Chemistry. Her undergraduate research focused on synthesizing rigid polyurethane materials from natural seed oils for environmentally friendly consumer products. In September 2013 she began working as a Scientific Research Assistant in the Microbiology Research and Development department at Johnson & Johnson’s medical device company, Advanced Sterilization Products. Here she worked on new product development of biological indicators to be used in low-temperature sterilizers. She joined the Pharmaceutical Science PhD program in August 2016 and works in Dr. Melanie Joy’s lab. Here she has studied the influence of vitamin D on functional expression on drug metabolizing enzymes and transporters in the kidney and she also investigated utilizing 6-gingerol and bardoxolone methyl as nephroprotectants against cisplatin-induced renal toxicity in mice. She plans to focus her research on the effects of drug-drug interactions in kidney injury and disease.

Becka Warfield

Warfield, Becka

For questions regarding graduate school programs contact:

Jackie Milowski - 303-724-7263,​​​​​