Pharmacy Program Leads Alumni Couple to Rewarding Careers and Wedding Bells
When Jennifer Fiebert ’09Pharm.D., née Greco, and Lee D. Fiebert ’09Pharm.D. entered St. John’s Doctor of Pharmacy program as first-year students, they knew they would acquire the skills needed for rewarding careers in health care. Little did they know that St. John’s would also be the place where they would discover their soul mates.
Jennifer and Lee met early during their first semester at St. John’s. “We were in the same Discover New York class together, and we ended up in many of the same courses that first year,” said Jennifer. The pair would have several classes in common throughout their years at the University.
For both, the decision to attend St. John’s was a matter of the University’s location and the quality of the program. “Proximity to home was very important to me,” said Jennifer, who attended Holy Trinity High School in Hicksville, NY.
Similarly, Lee chose to attend pharmacy school at St. John’s since it was close to his hometown of Massapequa Park, NY. “I wanted to attend a top pharmacy school, and I wanted to stay home so I could keep working at the community pharmacy where I was employed in high school,” he said. “I worked with so many St. John’s alumni at that pharmacy.”
The Pharm.D. program takes six years to complete and has an exceptional reputation, as well as a rigorous course load.
“We worked incredibly hard and studied constantly,” said Lee. “You have to make many sacrifices to ensure successful completion of the Pharm.D. program. There were certainly times when I questioned the sacrifice, but, in the end, it was all worth it.”
“I had some exceptional preceptors during rotations and during my residency,” said Jennifer. “They allowed me to see the deep impact a pharmacist has on patient care and the importance of the role of a pharmacist on the health-care team. It is an ideal model that I continue to strive to achieve in my practice.”
The couple married in 2012, and today, Jennifer and Lee both work in health care. Jennifer is a Clinical Pharmacy Coordinator at Huntington Hospital, Northwell Health, and Lee is Senior Director of Clinical Operations and Deputy Chief of Staff at Mount Sinai Health System.
Like every individual currently working in health care, Jennifer and Lee have found their careers affected by COVID-19 in myriad ways.
“The pandemic has put an incredible amount of stress on the health-care system in New York,” said Lee.
Jennifer cites an industry-wide lack of information as the biggest hurdle in coping with the virus. “You are always taught that treatments should be evidenced-based,” she said. “However, when patients are pouring into the hospital and the evidence is scarce, you do not have the luxury of relying on solid proof.”
Fortunately, St. John’s prepared the couple for the challenges the world currently faces. “I spent six years of my life constantly learning at St. John’s,” Jennifer said. “That did not stop once I graduated, and I rely on that motivation and perseverance for every role I have.”
Her husband agreed. “My time at St. John’s gave me the education I needed to be successful in my career,” he said. “Best of all, it gave me the opportunity to meet my wife.”