PROVIDENCE — The University of Rhode Island (https://www.uri.edu/) community gathered last week to honor the memory of College of Pharmacy alumnus Paramaz Avedisian ’54, whose lifetime represented a legacy of professionalism in pharmacy and philanthropy in the community.
University officials joined with members of the Avedisian family to cut a ceremonial ribbon officially rededicating the building on the Kingston campus in front of the building that houses the College of Pharmacy. The building, following legislative approval last summer, is now officially known as Paramaz Avedisian ’54 Hall.
The dedication comes after a transformative gift to the College of Pharmacy from the late Paramez Avedisian’s brother, Edward Avedisian. A performing symphonic musician, university teacher, noted philanthropist, and 2016 recipient of an Ellis Island Medal of Honor, Edward Avedisian has made a $5 million gift to support the College. It is his brother’s philanthropy, however, that he wants remembered by URI pharmacy students for generations to come.
“Paramaz’s philosophy was, ‘If you can’t be an advocate for the patient, why be a pharmacist?” Ed Avedisian recalled. “It is this spirit of helpfulness that we want this hall to embody. I want students who walk through the door to have a direct connection to him.”
The building dedication further connects Paramaz Avedisian and his family to the university, according to College of Pharmacy Dean Paul Larrat. The gift from Edward Avedisian will help fund a variety of projects in the College of Pharmacy, all working toward the goal of carrying on Paramez Avedisian’s legacy through education and innovation. Part of the gift will go toward a new Paramaz Avedisian Endowed Chair in Medicinal Organic Chemistry.