Dr. Victoria Pho, BS, PharmD, BCGP
Clinical Pharmacy Assistant Professor, Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy
Support to Texas A&M: Mai Nguyen Endowed Scholarship
Dr. Victoria Pho established a memorial scholarship in honor of her mother, Mai Nguyen.
Dr. Victoria Pho’s mother, Mai Nguyen, brought her to America as a Vietnam War refugee when she was nine months old, along with her three older siblings and her cousin.
Despite her lack of education and ability to speak English, Mai started over in America and raised her children by working odd jobs and emphasizing four core values: be a good citizen, be a good parent, be a good educator, and find ways to give and serve. She always stressed the importance of having an education, a good heart and kind thoughts. Mai’s advice: “Money comes and goes, but no one can take your education away.” All her children took this to heart.
Now a clinical pharmacy assistant professor at the Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy, Pho teaches students in the classroom and on clinical rotations. When possible, she also invests time in her real estate and photography work. Pho is married to a physician, Dr. Khoa Nguyen, and the couple has three daughters: Elizabeth, Catherine and Victoria.
Being kind is a central tenet of Pho’s life, and she feels that her mother’s values align with Texas A&M’s core values. “My role as an educator at Texas A&M brought great joy to my mom, and it makes me happy to know I made her proud,” said Pho. “I’m in a profession where I can foster great values in both a clinical and academic setting. I show my students how to have a caring heart as they serve their patients.”
Mai’s health began to decline last year, and she passed away in October 2017. “In her last few days, I told her I would do my best as a daughter, mom, wife and teacher,” said Pho. “After kissing her on the forehead for the last time, I promised that Khoa and I would create a scholarship to honor her for all the blessings she gave me, and that together she and I would continue to make a difference through education.
“Mai means ‘a beautiful flower,’ and she loved to have beautiful memories. I hope this scholarship will embody her beauty as a mother, educator and giver.”
The Mai Nguyen Endowed Scholarship will support pharmacy students with proven leadership skills who are pursuing careers as pharmacy educators with a geriatric focus. “I have one word for my life: empower,” said Pho. "Every minute counts, every moment matters and every effort makes a difference. Even when life gets challenging, I want to empower loved ones, students and patients to find hope, purpose and joy.”