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Fred Eshelman, Pharm.D., announces a $100 million gift to the School to create the Eshelman Institute for Innovation.

The Eshelman Institute for Innovation at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill — created by a historic $100 million gift to the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy in December — has officially launched.

The Eshelman Institute aims to inspire a culture of innovation where imagination and creative solutions accelerate change in education, research and health care. The institute provides a mechanism for faculty, staff, and students to seek funding for bold ideas and also provides opportunities to educate and train students and postdoctoral fellows; foster collaboration, creativity, and innovation; and stimulate commercialization of intellectual property and entrepreneurial development.

The institute aims to fund big ideas and innovations that have measurable impact and lead to transformative change in:

  • basic and applied research in the pharmaceutical sciences;
  • health-care quality, practice, and policy;
  • health-sciences education and educational research; and
  • business processes and practices.

The institute will provide faculty, staff, and students with new resources to engage in timely, opportunistic, creative, risky, and innovative work across the entire mission of the School and University. The institute encourages collaborations with innovators outside the School, but only faculty, staff, and students of the School can submit a proposal for funding.

The institute is now accepting proposals from all faculty and staff of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. The first deadline for faculty and staff of the School to submit proposals is July 1. The first date for students and postdoctoral fellows to submit their ideas is November 1.

The Eshelman Institute was created by a gift from philanthropist, pharmaceutical executive, and alumnus Fred Eshelman, PharmD, to the School in December 2014.

“Dr. Eshelman has always encouraged us to take risks, and the Eshelman Institute for Innovation provides us with the ability to pursue high-risk, high-reward ideas with partners on campus and to push those ideas out into the world as advancements in education, pharmacy practice and health care,” said Robert Blouin, dean of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

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