Daniel G. Garrett Asheville Project Endowed Scholarship

Daniel Garrett

Sporting Ferris State University pride, Dan Garrett (’76 College of Pharmacy), and his wife Anna (middle) enjoy time with family during a vacation to Oak Island, North Carolina. 

As they relate to Garrett from left to right— Jennifer Hulighan (daughter); Kennedy and Peyton Hulighan (grandchildren); Mike Secker (son-in-law); Stephanie Secker (daughter); Garrett and Chloe Secker (grandchildren); Anna (wife); Garrett; Steve Pearce (nephew-in-law); Melissa Pearce (niece); Elliott, Julia, and Ben Pearce (great niece and nephews).

 

Daniel Garrett established the Daniel G. Garrett Asheville Project Endowed Scholarship, which is designed to award pharmacy students with financial needs. 

“When I went to Ferris it was a bargain,” Garrett said, recalling how the cost of a four year degree barely reached $10,000. Today, the burden of paying for higher education is crippling students with debt. “I want to help students who don’t have deep pockets,” Garrett confided, determined to give today’s students the opportunity he had at a higher education. 

Garrett is an alumnus of Ferris State University’s College of Pharmacy. Drawn to Ferris for its practical approach to education, he declined his acceptance to the University of Michigan to pursue his degree in pharmacy here. “Ferris was a better value,” Garrett explained, citing its faculty taught classes. Driven by its mission to prepare students for responsible citizenship, Ferris was – and remains – a university where students graduate with meaningful skills. 

“Ferris is a college for people who want to do things,” Garrett said. He remembers being with a group of classmates who were there for a purpose. He explained how they were genuinely and truly interested in helping others. These attitudes exist today across campus, and are especially present in the College of Pharmacy. 

Garrett graduated from the program in 1976, and has since become a leader among pharmacists. Involved early in the computerization of pharmacy in Saginaw, he became a hospital pharmacy director for more than 20 years. As the executive director of the North Carolina Association of Pharmacists, he also provided leadership for the unification of five state pharmacy organizations, passed the Clinical Pharmacist Practitioner Act and Pharmacy Technician Statutes, and developed the Diabetes Community Health Project.

In spring of 2016, Garrett returned to Ferris to speak at the College of Pharmacy hooding ceremony. During his visit, he was reminded of Ferris’ leadership and innovation in healthcare. Inspired by students who were interested in expanding the role of pharmacists, he established the Daniel G. Garrett Asheville Project Endowed Scholarship. 

The Asheville Project, an initiative driven by the North Carolina Association of Pharmacy in Asheville, North Carolina, was the namesake for his scholarship endowment. Partnering with community pharmacists, the project provides education and personal oversight for employees with chronic health issues. Ensuring participants use their medications correctly, community pharmacists are changing the perception that they are merely ‘prescription fillers.’  

Garrett was a facilitator of the original Asheville Project, and remains a leader in the project, having worked nationally to replicate it in over 40 states. Working as the senior director for medication adherence, he was responsible for the Patient Self-Management Program and Diabetes Ten City Challenge, which expanded the Asheville Project for employers in diverse markets. 

His involvement in the Asheville Project motivated him to bring the initiative to Ferris. “I hope [the scholarship] will provide a legacy, and in a small way help students understand what we did in Asheville, and how they can get involved in direct patient care.”

This endowed scholarship is only one example of his philanthropic endeavors. Garrett has served on a number of boards including the Chair for the Homeward Bound, Liberty Corner Enterprises and Health Partners. The organization works to help end homelessness, support people with developmental disabilities, and serve the uninsured in his community. Through his experiences, he has seen the power of community engagement, and hopes his efforts will inspire other pharmacists to give back and become leaders in their communities, too. 

“One of the thing I learned from my dad was to give back to the community,” Garrett reflected. It’s been a lesson that has served him, and several communities well. 

For more information about establishing an endowment, please contact The Ferris Foundation at (231)-591-2365 or kimberlyerickson@ferris.edu.