Boca Raton, Fla. – Coming together to address common goals of diverse populations, Penn Dental Medicine faculty, students, and alumni took part in the historic Multicultural Oral Health Summit, held here July 20 – 24.
This special conference was the first ever joint session of the National Dental Association (NDA), the Hispanic Dental Association (HDA), and the Society of American Indian Dentists (SAID). The summit’s theme was “Collectively Meeting the Needs of a Diverse Population to Improve Oral Health.”
Dr. Beverly A. Crawford, Director of Diversity Affairs, and second-year dental student Jessica Germain (D’15) represented Penn Dental Medicine at the four-day conference, participating in a recruitment fair with emphasis on advanced degree programs and attending continuing education sessions. Dr. Crawford was also recognized during the opening ceremonies as a recipient of the 2012 National Dental Association Foundation (NDAF)/Colgate-Palmolive Faculty Recognition Award in the category of Administration/Service.
“We were honored to be able to participate in this historic collaboration between professional organizations and represent our school’s and University’s commitment to advancing diversity,” says Dr. Crawford, who will also be part of the American Dental Association (ADA) Institute for Diversity in Leadership this fall. “I hope this summit will be the catalyst to show students how much they could accomplish if they work together.”
Playing a key role is the meeting programming was Penn Dental Medicine Class of 2012 graduate Dr. Ngozi Okoh. As the 2012 national president of the Student National Dental Association (SNDA), she oversaw the student-centered activities of the summit. Also present was Dr. Joan Malcolm (D’94), a member of the Penn Dental Medicine Diversity Subcommittee.
Travel for Jessica Germain was funded by the Dr. Linda Gilliam Fund (established at Penn Dental Medicine by alumna and Board of Overseer Dr. Linda Gilliam, D’89) and the New Era Dental Society (the Philadelphia-area chapter of the National Dental Association and active supporters of the SNDA chapter at Penn Dental Medicine).
Contributed by Adjoa Mante
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