Jacqueline Chirico Savva ’16Pharm.D. and Dimitrios Savva ’16Pharm.D. give full credit to St. John’s University when they describe how their romance blossomed. The couple met in 2011 when they entered the University’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (CPHS) to launch their six-year quest for Doctor of Pharmacy degrees.
“If it weren’t for our time together at St. John’s, we probably would not have met,” said Mrs. Savva. “Spending six years together on the Queens, NY, campus gave us a chance to get to know each other and decide that we wanted to spend our futures together.”
Mr. Savva, who today is a Clinical Pharmacy Manager specializing in pediatric critical care at New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, recalls that they began their relationship as friends. “We both had similar interests and goals, so we would lean on each other for support when our classes got tough.”
“Going through a challenging academic program together kept us close and allowed our relationship to grow,” added Mrs. Savva, who is a Pediatric Pharmacy Operations Manager at The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore.
“We were able to balance our free time with our schoolwork by studying together, seeing each other between classes, and setting aside moments to decompress from school-related activities.”
The couple married on November 7, 2020. Due to the pandemic, they had a small wedding ceremony at that time but were able to host a full reception party last year on November 12.
The Savvas are active alumni, which reflects their continued commitment to the institution that brought them together. They are involved in the St. John’s chapters of Mr. Savva’s fraternity, Phi Delta Chi, and Mrs. Savva’s sorority, Lambda Kappa Sigma. They also serve as guest speakers and panelists for a variety of CPHS organizations and volunteer as alumni mentors, assisting CPHS students to meet their goals or help guide them as they discern which professional path they should take after graduation.
“Our intention with these engagements is that our stories will resonate with students,” said Mr. Savva.
The Savvas are also enthusiastic supporters of the Doctor of Pharmacy White Coat program. The White Coat Convocation is an annual rite of passage for the students, who formally receive their white lab coats as they pledge their commitment to their chosen profession and to the health of their patients.
“We try to give back as much as we can. We both would not be where we are today if others had not done the same for us,” Mrs. Savva said. “We recognize that the field of pharmacy is competitive, and having a strong, supportive network through CPHS is one of the best indicators of success. We are happy to be a part of this support system, and we hope that others will also see the benefit of paying it forward.”