Featured News

A Message from the Dean

One of the high points of being an academic is the feeling one gets when an editor sends the email that says, “It is a pleasure to accept your manuscript…” Having a manuscript accepted in a peer reviewed journal is a great accomplishment in and of itself. Every now and then, some level of additional recognition comes with these publications, such as "Article of the Year," or other additional measure of honoring your work. As Dean, it is always special when our students, staff or faculty publishing manuscripts are honored in this manner.

2021 White Coat Ceremony

The School of Dentistry celebrated 105 DDS learners, 21 Dental Hygiene learners and 7 Dental Therapy learners at their White Coat Ceremony last week, marking their official entrance into the dental profession.

First celebrated in 1989 at the University of Chicago, the White Coat Ceremony marks the moment in which each clinical learner is bestowed with their first white coat, recognizing the professionalism and patient-centered care expected of the wearer.

Laurie Strand, DDS

Laurie Strand, DDS, is the 2020 Adjunct Clinical Faculty of the Year awardee, announced earlier this summer.

Chosen each year based on a student vote, the Adjunct Clinical Faculty of the Year award recognizes one adjunct instructor who serves in the clinics each year for their excellence in teaching and clinical expertise.

When Strand found out she had received the award, she was surprised and delighted. Having been on leave for the summer, she heard from a colleague that a large package had been delivered for her. She opened it, and inside was her plaque.

Donald Nixdorf, DDS, MS

Donald Nixdorf, DDS, MS, Director of the Division of Temporomandibular Disorders & Orofacial Pain, became vice president of the International Network of Orofacial Pain and Related Disorders Methodology (INfORM) in July.

“I am excited to continue the work of the people who came before me, and continue to make an impact in the realm of orofacial pain,” Nixdorf said of the appointment.

CBCT Technology

The School of Dentistry has made a major investment in the future of 3D imaging, thanks to the work of two faculty specialists. Now, they are on a mission to educate more dental professionals in the process.

Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota

2021 marks thirty years of research, collaboration, and advocacy for the Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota, and the School of Dentistry has been a part of its research mission every step of the way.

2021 Orientation

Last week, 133 new students made their debut on the University of Minnesota’s campus to attend orientation for their respective programs. The incoming class of 2021 consists of 105 DDS, 21 Dental Hygiene, and seven Dental Therapy students who participated in a hybrid orientation program.

The students began their first day on campus, at the Health Sciences Education Center, where they received a warm welcome from Dean Keith A. Mays, DDS, MS, PhD.

A Message from the Dean

Our mission statement says, “The University of Minnesota School of Dentistry advances health through scientific discovery, innovative education and the highest-quality care for all communities.” I believe the key phrase in this statement is “care for all communities:” one of the main points of focus for our school is caring for people. Implicit in our mission statement is a quest for us to care for our patients as scientific discovery and technological innovations provide us with new knowledge and improved techniques.

Brent Larson, DDS, MS, and Amy Tasca, DDS, PhD

Amy Tasca, DDS, PhD, became the first holder of the Dr. Robert J. Isaacson Professorship in Orthodontics in July. She will serve as the endowed professor for a three-year term.

Established by a $1 million gift from his wife, Delores, the Isaacson Professorship and fund honors Faculty Emeritus Robert Isaacson, DDS, MS, PhD, who died in September 2018 at the age of 86. The fund was established in 2019 to celebrate Isaacson’s dedication to the field of orthodontics and continue his legacy of influencing and shaping dentists.

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