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I would like to highlight a few special activities held recently that showcase the Dugoni School family spirit in action.

On Thursday, September 10, we held our second Coffee with the Cabinet. It is an informal opportunity for the school family to gather with members of my Cabinet to discuss ideas, socialize, and reflect a bit before the start of the day. We hope to see you at the next one on Tuesday, October 13.

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Our Alumni Association hosted a very successful Board of Directors meeting on Friday, September 11. More than 25 people participated, including several past presidents and student representatives. We discussed creating a stronger and more collaborative working relationship between the Alumni Association and the dental school. Thank you to President Bill van Dyk ’73 and our other leaders and volunteers. We are fortunate to have one of the strongest alumni networks of any dental school and I am always excited to discuss ways to enhance our alumni engagement strategies.

The school picnic on Saturday, September 12 was a great success. Approximately 300 people gathered at California’s Great America for the event. It was fun to see many families in attendance enjoying the theme park and getting to know each other outside of the school. Thank you to all who had the opportunity to stop by and a special thank you to picnic committee members Kamika Brown, Valeria Donald, Helene Huerto, Cindy Mar, and Maria Petersen.

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Our Department of Orthodontics, along with Dr. Eddie Hayashida, recently demonstrated philanthropy by putting together a large box of supplies to send to the victims of the Valley Fire. Thanks to the group for this gesture that will make a difference in the lives of our neighbors.

Ortho donation Valley Fire

The Orthodontic residents also finished up their 27-month program last Friday, September 18. They celebrated with a graduation lecture on Friday followed by a dinner at the City Club. It was great to see the Dugoni Orthodontic community gather to celebrate the achievements of our newest Ortho graduates!

Thank you for a great quarter. I wish you all a good, well deserved break.

Nader A. Nadershahi, DDS, MBA, EdD
Interim Dean

 

Alums

Over the last couple of weeks we had the opportunity to host many alumni and their families, leaders from organized dentistry, and special guests from around the world. Thank you for showing hospitality and the Dugoni School of Dentistry spirit of humanism during these visits.

The California Dental Association’s San Francisco conference was a big success, bringing thousands of dental professionals to our corner of the city. It was impressive to see that nearly 15 of our faculty members shared their expertise as speakers and many demonstrated one of our core values of leadership. Faculty members also led four workshops held in our school’s Anatomy Lab over the three days of C.E. programming.

During CDA, I hosted the deans of the California dental schools and the CDA leadership for a meeting at our school. We had a good discussion about the portfolio exam pathway to licensure, the Denti-Cal reimbursements rates and coverage for patients of dental schools, and other topics that affect us all as dental educators.

Alumni reception

Our alumni reception on Friday, August 21 was a well-attended event, with hundreds of alumni and their family members stopping by the school. Thank you to our Alumni Association board members, staff, volunteers, and our development team who made the event a success. It brought the school family together, reinforced connections among our alumni, and created some new connections. I would also like to thank U.S. Bank for sponsoring the reception. You can view photos of the reception online at https://dugonischool.smugmug.com/CDA-Reception-Aug-2015/

Our new facility continues to be a showcase for visitors, including international dental students and educators. Eight students from Peking University School of Stomatology are with us through September 2. Thank you to all who are making them feel welcome as they learn about our school and American dental education. We also recently hosted representatives from BYBO Dental Group, China’s largest group dental practice organization. All of these visitors are impressed with our people, programs, and new campus, and it is always fun to introduce them to students, faculty, and staff.

Peking students

Thank you for everything you do each day to showcase our values and welcome our visitors.

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I am honored to serve as the Interim Dean of the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry and look forward to a successful year for our school community.

Many of you know that I graduated from the Dugoni School back in 1994. While owning my own dental practice, I returned to the school to teach part time in the 1990s. My roles since then have included several faculty positions in all areas of our curriculum, leadership roles as a Group Practice Administrator, Department Chair and most recently as Executive Associate Dean and Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. All of these experiences contribute to the tremendous respect I have for the school’s legacy and future. It was, and still is, an inspiring place!

To our students and residents, you have my full support as you pursue your professional training. Our faculty and staff are here to make sure all students and residents have the resources you need to excel in your programs. Above all, we are committed to your success, and that commitment will continue as strong as ever.

To our faculty, staff and alumni, I look forward to continuing our strong and supportive culture. This close-knit family and our core value of humanism help us deliver programs at the very highest level each year. The Dugoni School is renowned for many things, and our achievements are the result of the talented people who are the magic of our school family.

To our patients, members of the community, and wider University of the Pacific colleagues, I look forward to working with all of you. Our clinical services, community outreach and University-wide initiatives are important aspects of our school’s mission. They help inspire our vision of “Leading the Improvement of Health by Advancing Oral Health.”

Thank you all for your support of the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry. Together, we will have a wonderful year ahead!

During the past few weeks, I had the chance to travel to several cities and meet with people, including many of our alumni, who are doing some remarkable things.

First, I had the opportunity to attend the graduation ceremony for Dr. Cindy Lyon, chair of our Department of Dental Practice, from the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) program. A one-year program of leadership training for women in academic medicine, dentistry and public health, ELAM is part of the International Center for Executive Leadership in Academics at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, PA.

Each year, ELAM selects a group of 54 women candidates from a significantly large pool of applicants. The applicants have already demonstrated leadership, but this is an opportunity to improve on their leadership skills. They ask the deans to come to two days of graduation activities at the end of the program, and I had the opportunity to participate.

Dr. Lyon graduated from the prestigious ELAM program.
Dr. Lyon graduated from the prestigious ELAM program.

I was extremely impressed with Cindy and the project she has accomplished as part of the program. Her project focused on the future move of our Dental Hygiene program from Stockton to San Francisco. While that may seem somewhat simple, it is a very complex project because it involves many people and areas. I heard a high number of positive comments about Cindy from her fellow classmates.

The next activity, which I enjoyed immensely, was attending the California Dental Association’s annual meeting in Anaheim held April 30-May 2. I had an opportunity to meet with many of our alumni from throughout the region. The Pacific Dugoni Alumni Reception held at the Anabella Hotel was a great opportunity to connect. I heard so many positive stories about what our alums are doing, not only in their practices, but also in their personal lives, and how they are giving back to their communities. As we all know, we are proud of our graduates. Meeting our alumni at these types of events reinforces that strong feeling. It is always inspiring to hear about their achievements and leadership in their local communities.

Meeting with alumni at the Pacific Dugoni Alumni Reception held at the Anabella Hotel during CDA Presents - Anaheim.

Finally, on May 2, I had the opportunity to meet up with one of our graduates, Dr. Bill Dorfman ’83. In addition to his very successful cosmetic dentistry practice, he is involved in METal International, a membership group for dynamic entrepreneurs in the Los Angeles area. The purpose of their Saturday gatherings is to network, not necessarily to help themselves with their businesses, but to connect each other to all the good things that they are doing in the community.

Today, we hear about so many negative things in the world, but it was heartening and impressive to listen to these leaders as they discussed all the different community activities they are involved with and to which they are giving their time, talent, and treasure.

Bill Dorfman himself is making a difference through a program he co-founded called LEAP (which stands for Leadership, Excellence and Accelerating Potential). It helps young people begin to prepare better for their future by teaching them goal-setting, mentorship, self-motivation, professionalism and effective communication skills. Often, these young people have limited exposure to role models. People who volunteer for the program help fill that void.

Once again, I am always proud to see what our people are doing out in the world. As dean, it is very fulfilling for me to visit with our wonderful graduates and hear their stories.