Michelle Robinson ’07 is trained as a pharmacist and health policy analyst who has a passion for addressing drug affordability challenges and access to care. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Syracuse University in 2011, Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) from Concordia University Wisconsin School of Pharmacy in 2016 and Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2022. Michelle is currently working at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. She is focusing on the implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act through Medicare Drug Price Negotiations.

Q: Think back to what you wanted to do when you were younger. Is it what you’re doing now?
When I was younger, I dreamed of being a doctor. I wanted to help people, especially kids since they are a vulnerable population. Although not a pediatrician, I have earned my Doctor of Pharmacy. My target population has extended from children to everyone, and I have an opportunity to positively affect all Americans when it comes to drug access and affordability challenges.

Q: What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Each day, I am grateful for my passion, drive and knowing that I can make an impact on the lives of others. That gets me out of bed in the morning and also knowing that I’ve probably planned a vacation … which means I better get up and go to work.

Q: What are you most proud of?
My proudest moment was graduating from Concordia University Wisconsin School of Pharmacy School in 2016. I knew I wanted to be a doctor but never thought that I would become a pharmacist. I graduated from Syracuse University in 2011 and was preparing to study for my MCAT while working my summer job in a pharmacy. I had great mentors and knew that pharmacy was my calling, so the summer after I received my bachelor’s degree, I put my MCAT book down and picked up the PCAT books. I love connecting with my customers and getting to know their life stories. I am proud because I never gave up on my dreams and discovered a new passion. 

Q: Describe your Garrison experience in one word.

Q: If you could give a graduating Senior one piece of advice, what would it be?
You will have many successes and failures in your life, but don’t be discouraged. You will learn more about yourself when your back is against the wall in tough situations. Don’t let social media fool you, no one has life figured out. The challenges and obstacles that you overcome will be an amazing story in the end!

Q: What are you most looking forward to?
I am looking forward to my new position with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. I will be working to help implement the Inflation Reduction Act and continuing my passion to help make drugs more affordable for all.

This article was originally published in the 2023 Garrison Forest Magazine.