Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 12

Graduation :

Adedoyin and Blessing Abraham on their wedding day.



dedoyin D. Abraham is one lucky guy.
Of Nigerian heritage, Abraham
won a diversity immigrant visa in 2005
through the US visa lottery system. The
visa lottery allows foreign-born nationals to migrate, and eventually become
US citizens.

Up to 50,000 visas are available
annually - through a random process
- to individuals from countries with
low rates of immigration to the US.
More than 2 million Nigerians apply
each year and a little over 6,000 win
this distinction. Despite those odds,
Abraham was a lucky recipient of a visa.
"I was so happy. The visa created a lot of
opportunities for me," Abraham says.
Coincidentally, Abraham's sister
and her family also won the visa lottery in 2001 and moved to Colorado.
"A major requirement of the visa is to
have somewhere to stay in the US," he
says. For Abraham, that meant moving in with his sister and her family.

Armed with a BS in Biochemistry
from the University of Ilorin in
Nigeria, Abraham began looking
for a job and discovered that an
advanced degree was a requirement
for the positions for which he was
applying. "This knowledge instilled
a desire to continue my academic
career," recalls Abraham.
He took the GRE (Graduate
Record Examination) and sent for
his transcripts, and then enrolled at
CU Denver where he earned an MS
degree in Chemistry. While Abraham
continued with his educational pursuits
he also found time to return to Nigeria
and marry his college sweetheart,

Blessing, who had also attained her BS
in Biochemistry.
He then began knocking on doors
at the Anschutz Medical Campus and
eventually crossed paths with Associate
Professor Dan LaBarbera, PhD, who
gave Abraham an opportunity to work
in his lab at CU Pharmacy.
After a year working on novel anti-tumor agents for colorectal cancer,
LaBarbera recommended Abraham
enroll in the PhD program where he
received an NIH diversity grant that
covered his stipend and tuition for four
years. He then received another grant
from the Toxicology program, which
covered his stipend and tuition for his


CU Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

final year. "I am so grateful for the awards
I received. I couldn't have afforded
school without them," says Abraham.
During the time Abraham was working
on his PhD, Blessing was accepted into
and began the PharmD program.
In May, husband and wife will be
graduating from CU Pharmacy - as
doctors - Adedoyin with a PhD and
Blessing with a PharmD. Counting
their blessings, the Abrahams want
to give back, "The US government
believed in me, so I need to contribute to benefit this country." Fingers
crossed, they will be able to do so with
Blessing in community pharmacy and
Adedoyin pursuing cancer research.


Indushekhar Persaud
· Pharmaceutical Sciences

MAY 2018

Dinen Shah
· Pharmaceutical Sciences

Amandla Atilano-Roque
· Toxicology
Jessica Ponder
· Toxicology
Adedoyin Abraham
· Toxicology


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Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 11
Pharmacy Perspectives - Graduation 2018 - 12