School News

Posted on: Thursday, 10/27/2016

Introducing the Class of 2020

The dental school welcomed the DDS Class of 2020 (click here for photos) on Friday, September 23rd at Schoenberg Hall at the annual White Coat Ceremony, a significant milestone in a dentist’s career. This year's incoming class has impressive credentials, with an average DAT score of 23 and an overall GPA of 3.75.

Started by the Apollonian Society in 2002, new students receive a white coat during the ceremony – signifying the start of a student’s 4-year academic dental training and the transition from pre-clinical studies to clinical health sciences. The School's membership-based society still continues their support of this important event.

Presiding over the ceremony was Dean Paul Krebsbach; Dr. Susan Fredericks, Chair of the UCLA Apollonian Society; and the School’s associate deans.

Dean Krebsbach noted that, “over the next four years, you will be tried and tested; you’ll be challenged by your faculty and classmates; you’ll experience periods of frustration balanced with periods of excitement and discovery, but the end reward is worth the hard work. Becoming a dentist is an honor and a privilege, but it also comes with a responsibility to the community of patients that you will treat and the profession of dentistry.”

The ceremony ended with the student’s reciting the Dental Student’s Pledge, an oath that all students make to commit to the school, the profession and the public it serves.

Following the ceremony, students and their families were invited to enjoy an outside reception at the Health Sciences patio. On behalf of the entire school, we wish the class of 2020 the best as they embark on this important phase of their career.

Student Wins Big in Literary Contest

DDS student, Arth Patel, was the winner of the first annual My Kool Smiles Scholarship Fund essay contest, sponsored by the Benevis Foundation. Arth earned a $5,000 scholarship for his winning essay on how dental health contributes to the wellbeing of children and families.

In his essay, Arth discussed his experience growing up in rural India where quality dental care was not available and how his family benefited from access to community-based dental health care programs after moving to the United States. He discovered his passion for dentistry while volunteering at a local community health clinic. Congratulations Arth!

Health Professions Training Program Renewed

The long-running Summer Health Professions Education Program (formerly the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program) was renewed for another year through a generous donation from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Given out by the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Dental Education Association, students interested in health careers can apply to attend a free six-week summer program.

The program is co-hosted by UCLA's dental and medical schools and applications are currently being accepted through March 1. The program aims to encourage underprivileged students to explore various health careers and allows the opportunity to explore a variety of health care issues affecting medically underserved communities through problem-based learning cases, lectures, clinical experiences, small-group discussions, and a research project. The program accepts 80 current first-year, second-year or community college students on a rolling basis. 

Taking a Break at the All-School Picnic

Hosted by the Associated Student Body and Dean Krebsbach, the dental school held its annual All-School Picnic on Saturday, Oct. 8 at the Sunset Recreation Center. More than 200 students, residents, staff, and faculty enjoyed festivities including tug-o’-war, a pie-eating contest, and a BBQ. The picnic is a great opportunity for first-year dental students to network with other classes and also meet some of the faculty.

Click here to see photos from the event.

Making Connections with Our Alums

The 2016 season for the Dinner for 12 Dental Students program was a resounding success. More than 100 pre-doctoral students were hosted by 11 alumni/faculty who also invited residents and dentists from the local area. Over the span of two weekends, July 23 through 24, and August 6 through 7, ten different dinners took place where pre-doctoral students had the opportunity to network and learn from local alums working in the field. The purpose of the program is to create a smaller, friendlier community within the dental school and its alumni in the greater Los Angeles area.

On behalf of the Office of Student and Alumni Affairs and the coordinators of the program, we would like to thank the following hosts:

  • Joan Otomo-Corgel
  • Melanie Gullett/George Maranon
  • Adi Genish
  • Audrey Yoon/Joseph Yoon
  • Regina Wong, DDS
  • John Asano
  • Kathleen Clemans
  • Charles C. Low
  • Colby Smith
  • Mitra Mogharabi
  • Marc Hayashi

UCLA Instrumental in Operative Dentistry Being Recognized by ADA

It was announced on November 1, at the annual ADA Meeting in Denver, that Operative Dentistry would be adopted as the first Special Interest Area of General Dentistry. The Advanced Clinical Training (ACT) Restorative Program at UCLA – one of only nine programs in existence – was referenced in the announcement.

Along with the other program directors across the country, (Michigan, UNC, Iowa, Indiana, USC, BU, etc.) and after a three-year effort by the American Board of Operative Dentistry, this important recognition was finally received.

UCLA’s ACT Restorative Program, directed by Dr. Richard Stevenson, a professor of clinical dentistry and chair of the Section of Restorative Dentistry, was instrumental in providing data, testimony and support to this effort and UCLA is to be commended. The program’s robust curriculum and well-structured training program were met with complements by all involved in the process.

For a full overview of the announcement, visit the ADA website.

Importance of Diversity in Health Care

The School of Dentistry welcomed Dr. Scott Page, the Leonid Hurwicz Collegiate Professor of Complex Systems, Political Science, and Economics, from the Center for the Study of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan on Thurs., Dec. 1.

Dr. Page visited various departments at UCLA to discuss diversity and specifically presented on: The Business Case for Diversity in Biomedical and Health Disparities at the Neurosciences Research Building Auditorium on Dec. 2. Dr. Page addressed diversity in complex systems and health disparities among diverse populations and the use of team science to address those disparities. 

Dr. Page is author of the landmark bestseller “The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools and Societies.” His visit was supported by a Visiting Speaker’s Award from the UCLA Interdisciplinary and Cross Campus Affairs office and a collaborative of UCLA professional schools (including the dental school) and the College of Social Sciences. 

Below Dr. Page visits with dental school leadership, from left to right; Drs. Scott Page, Edmond Hewlett, Carol Bibb, Dean Paul Krebsbach and Dr. Ronald Mito.