News

Elizabeth Razdolsky with Interim Associate Dean for Research Dr. David Crowe (left) and Interim Dean Dr. Bill Knight (right)
Student Elizabeth Razdolsky Earns NIH Research Fellowship
Posted on 9/23/2014

Elizabeth Razdolsky, a student in the DMD/PhD program at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry, recently earned a research Fellowship from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
A Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award for Individual Predoctoral MD/PhD and Other Dual Doctoral Degree Fellow (F30), Razdolsky will receive $48,467 per year for four years for her research.
 Working in the Center for Wound Healing and Tissue Regeneration and mentored by Dr. Luisa DiPietro, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research, Razdolsky is studying a protein called pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), “which plays a role in many cell processes in the human body,” Razdolsky said. “This research award involved PEDF’s effect on the wound healing process.”
 Razdolsky hopes to discover how PEDF “regulates blood vessel formation and scar formation in wounds,” she said. “These studies may suggest future therapeutic options for tissue regeneration, fibrosis, and cancer. This work can hopefully be translated into the oral cavity in the future.”
 In the spring, Razdolsky applied for the Fellowship, called an “F Award,” by submitting a research proposal to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research of the NIH.
 “This research grant is a long writing process that involves lots of preliminary studies and a background in research,” Razdolsky explained. “It requires a great team and research lab to support you throughout the way, since there are a lot of writing drafts and intensive paperwork in order for the process to go smoothly.
 “Dr. DiPietro is a wonderful mentor and I would not have been able to do this without her, Wendy Cerny, Katherine Long, Virginia Buglio, or Mateusz Wietecha. I had a wonderful support team,” Razdolsky said
 In the future, Razdolsky plans to “continue doing research as well as dentistry, which would possibly involve a post-doctoral research and specialty program.”

Dr. Evans receiving honorary degree
Dr. Evans Awarded Honorary Degree from Franklin & Marshall
Posted on 7/8/2014

Franklin & Marshall College of Lancaster, PA, recently awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science Degree to Dr. Caswell Evans, the College of Dentistry’s Associate Dean for Prevention and Public Health Sciences Dr. Evans earned his BA in English from Franklin & Marshall in 1965.

Dr. Daniel R. Porterfield, President of Franklin & Marshall, told Dr. Evans that the institution wanted “to honor you for your work as a strong and effective advocate for health promotion and disease prevention and your deep commitment to health equity and eliminating health disparities.”

Prior to joining the College faculty in 2004, Dr. Evans served as Executive Editor and Project Director of the U.S. Surgeon General’s landmark 2000 report on the state of the nation’s oral health, Oral Health in America. Through that report, Dr. Evans popularized the term “silent epidemic” to describe the lack of oral healthcare for minorities and the poor.

At the College, the Division of Prevention and Public Health Sciences plans and executes the College’s community-based clinical and non-clinical extramural experiences and public health coursework. In the community-based Extramural Education Program, fourth-year students participate in service-learning experiences in community-based clinics, providing care for underserved urban, rural, and special needs populations.

Dr. Evans noted that, “To be honored in this way based on my work in, and contribution to, improving population health was a thrill and quite special.”

Dr. Doubleday receiving Jon Daniel Teaching Award
Dr. Doubleday receives Jon Daniel Teaching Award
Posted on 7/3/2014

Congratulations to Dr. Alison Doubleday on receiving the 2014 Jon Daniel Teaching Award. This award confers upon her the distinction as a Jon Daniel Teaching Scholar.

Dr. Doubleday’s vision, organizational skills, and important work in designing and implementing the new curriculum were all cited as impetus for her nomination. Noted for her dedication to revitalizing the anatomy curriculum, Dr. Doubleday was instrumental in developing many new teaching tools including SoftChalk, use of iPads and videos in anatomy lab. Dr. Doubleday’s commitment to the COD’s academic mission and availability to both students and colleagues make her an outstanding choice for this award. Dr. Doubleday acknowledges that,"learning is a complex process and students approach this process differently. In order to give students the help they need, it's not enough for a teacher to be a content expert, teachers must be patient, creative and supportive."

The Daniel Award was established in 2010 in memory of longtime Oral Biology faculty member Dr. Jon Daniel, to honor instructors making exemplary contributions to UIC dental students education. The award honors many of Dr. Daniels' qualities, including, the ability to engage students' interest and curiosity, to motivate and challenge students and to respond to student needs. Dr. Daniel passed away in 2009.

books for donation
College of Dentistry Helps Start Library in Guatemala
Posted on 7/29/2014

University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry senior students Hussain Ali, Alexandria Balich, Joseph Beatty, and Cristian Pavel embarked on an international rotation to Guatemala this past year. The students’ primary objective was providing dental care for 55 children in preschool through first grade. However, it was clear that the Guatemalan youngsters were desperate for books. The UIC students worked with Khatija Noorullah, the College’s Clinical Community Academic Manager, to request children’s books from the College community for the children in Guatemala. Together, college faculty, staff, and students donated around 100 books.

“They were able to start a library in the school where they provided the clinical dental care, Susanna Wesley School,” Noorullah said. “It was great of the students to go the extra mile and for the College to participate so wholeheartedly.” The school is located in Camanachaj in Guatemala’s rural highlands. It educates children in pre-school, kindergarten, and first grade.

Dr. Bradford Johnson
Dr. Johnson to head the Department of Endodontics
Posted on 7/23/2014

Dr. Bradford Johnson received his DDS degree from Virginia Commonwealth University/Medical College of Virginia. After completing a general practice residency and practicing general dentistry for several years, he earned his specialty certificate in endodontic at the UIC College of Dentistry. He began his teaching career in the Department of Endodontics in 1991 and became Director of Postdoctoral Endodontics in 2005. He has a Master of Health Professions Education degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and was a Fellow of the American Dental Education Association Leadership Institute in 2005-2006. Dr. Johnson is a Diplomate of the American Board of Endodontics.

Dr. Johnson has published over 70 articles and abstracts and is coauthor of five textbook chapters. His primary research interests include: clinical decision making, dental education, clinical outcomes research, and tissue regeneration.

Additionally, Dr. Johnson is a site visit consultant for the Commission on Dental Accreditation and has served on the National Board Dental Exam Test Construction Committee, Part 2, both the Endodontics specialty committee and Component B case-based committee.

Currently Dr. Johnson serves on the Scientific Advisory and Manuscript Review Panel of the Journal of Endodontics and has served on the AAE Research and Scientific Affairs Committee, Continuing Education Committee, Evidence Based Endodontics Committee, and various AAE ad hoc committees. He is past president of the Illinois Association of Endodontists and Edgar D Coolidge Endodontic Study Club. In May 2015, he will begin a 3-year term on the Board of Directors of the American Association of Endodontists.

Faculty Honored for Teaching Excellence
Posted on 7/22/2014

Dr. Alison Doubleday, Assistant Professor, Oral Biology, and Dr. Fatemeh Afshari, Clinical Assistant Professor, Restorative Dentistry were selected to receive the 2013-14 Teaching Recognition Awards by peers through UIC’s Council for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL).

Thirty-two people applied for this year’s award. Recipients are selected by a CETL subcommittee of nine previous UIC faculty award recipients considers candidate statements, student feedback, peer reviews, course materials, mentoring of students, curriculum development, and implementation of new pedagogies and methods. The council was impressed with Dr. Doubleday’s and Dr. Afshari’s range of teaching activities and program development.

“The fact that this is a peer-reviewed award means a great deal to me,” Dr. Doubleday said. “There are many exceptional teachers at UIC and I’m flattered and humbled that my teaching is recognized in this way by other UIC faculty. I am passionate about teaching, and I believe the first priority and responsibility for all faculty members at educational institutions is to help guide and facilitate the learning process for students. Through our teaching, we can instill curiosity about the world, as well as a desire to make connections across disciplines. In doing so, we provide students with the means to become life-long learners and we set them up for success in any field.”

“It’s in our nature to always better ourselves and strive for the best no matter what we do,” Dr. Afshari said. “This is what I expect from my students—and myself.” Asking oneself “why” is crucial to learning, Dr. Afshari explained. “My philosophy has been to pursue my students to learn by asking this simple question and, in turn, seeking the answer via an evidence-based, self-directed quest. My philosophy coincides with the school’s mission of encouraging learners to become active participants in their own learning experience.”

“For me, awards like this reaffirm the importance that UIC places on student learning,” Dr. Doubleday said. “By recognizing and supporting the efforts of teachers, UIC is investing in student learning. Awards like this also encourage faculty members to try new teaching methodologies.”

“It’s nice to be recognized for the work we do as faculty on a daily basis and to be appreciated for our efforts,” Dr. Afshari. “These awards also assist the College of Dentistry in being recognized within the UIC campus.”

Dr. Afshari and Dr. Doubleday thanked colleagues and students who wrote letters of recommendation, faculty who have inspired them in their careers, and CETL.

Dr. Fatemeh Afshari, Clinical Assistant Professor, and Dr. Cortino Sukotjo and Dr. Judy Yuan, Assistant Professors, Restorative Dentistry.
Study Correlates Patient Diagnoses with Implant Therapy Outcomes
Posted on 7/15/2014

The COD’s Wach Research Grant Program Committee awarded the Department of Restorative Dentistry $15,000 to examine the “Correlation between diagnostic complexity and treatment outcomes: a prospective study.” Co-investigators are Dr. Fatemeh Afshari, Clinical Assistant Professor, and Dr. Cortino Sukotjo and Dr. Judy Yuan, Assistant Professors, Restorative Dentistry.

Few studies have measured outcomes of treatments provided or correlated treatment to the diagnostic complexity, patients treated in a predoctoral dental or postgraduate prosthodontic programs. This research attempts to determine patient diagnoses and correlating to outcomes of implant therapy within a clinical setting, including assessment of patient expectations and satisfaction.

A pilot diagnosis and therapy-tracking database for implant patients was developed and implemented within the Department of Restorative Dentistry, and is successfully evaluating outcomes of implant-retained removable partial dentures, fixed complete dentures, and implant-retained overdentures on a trial basis.

“However, this research methodology can be adapted and improved from a paper format to a dynamic web-based database,” Dr. Afshari explained. “To this end, in the proposed study, treatment outcomes will be prospectively documented via a secure web application—Research Electronic Data Capture, or REDCAP.

“As such, it will potentially have use in venues other than UIC, thereby fostering broad clinical research collaboration and large patient population outcomes research to improve patient treatment and maintenance,” she added.

“By systematically analyzing a broad array of diagnostic factors via the prosthodontic diagnostic index and learning their associations with treatment outcomes, current and future methods for patient therapy are expected to be refined,” Dr. Afshari said. “Most importantly, a more comprehensive assessment of patient perspectives will further focus therapy approaches towards patient benefits from functional, psychological, and economic perspectives.

“Collaboration with additional institutions will more readily occur because the web-based database approach will provide a systematic, user-friendly platform for data collection,” she concluded. “Externally funded research will be more likely, and a larger patient population will yield even more accurate information regarding the link between prognostic factors and treatment outcomes."

The researchers thanked the Wach Research Grant Program Committee, chaired by Dr. Guy Adami, Associate Professor, Department of Oral Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, for not only seeing merit in the proposal, but for giving the researchers opportunities to revise and improve it.

The project has received additional support from Restorative Dentistry Department Head Dr. Stephen Campbell and Postgraduate Program Directors Dr. Kent Knoernschild and Dr. Rand Harlow. Departmental Hygienist Mayra Suh and Clinical Director Stephanie Clarke also will work on the project.

springfield capitol
Gov. Quinn signs law restoring adult dental care for Medicaid
Posted on 6/18/2014

Modernizing an outdated Medicaid system, Governor Quinn signed legislation on June 16, 2014 restoring previously authorized adult dental care to Illinois’ three million Medicaid recipients. The legislation is “part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to ensure all people have access to quality healthcare and improve the health and wellbeing of the people of Illinois.”

The inclusion of dental care in the bill emphasizes dentistry’s importance in maintaining a person’s overall health. Prior to the signing of this bill, adult dental services were limited to emergency services.

More information pertaining to the signing of the bill can be found here. To review Senate Bill 741, click here; specifics regarding the adult dental benefit changes can be found on page 206 of the PDF document.

Clinic and Research Day Scheduled
Posted on 2/6/2015

University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry
Clinic and Research Day to be Held March 5, 2015

Get the latest dental knowledge at the 28th annual Clinic and Research Day, set for Thursday, March 5, 2015, at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry, which will take on the appearance of a national dental meeting all day.

The event will run from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and focus on student research presentations, Critically Appraised Topics competitions based on actual cases, and feature a nationally known keynote speaker. Continuing Education credit will be available for attending the poster presentation and the keynote presentation.

“Our students and fellows will present approximately 100 posters highlighting their current research,” said Dr. David L. Crowe, Interim Associate Dean for Research at the UIC College of Dentistry. “They cover a wide range of topics in the basic, behavioral, clinical, and applied sciences. Predoctoral, postgraduate, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and their faculty mentors will be competing for awards in a number of categories.” 

At the College, faculty, postgraduates, and students conduct a wide range of research activities, from basic research, public health and prevention, and the development of best practices in dentistry, to the creation of techniques and technology that will allow teeth to be regenerated in adults. Research occurs at the College from the “bench to the chairside” (and the reverse)—to accelerate diagnostic and interventional therapies for College patients. Clinic and Research Day allows the postgraduates, students, and their faculty mentors to share their research with the dental and medical communities.

Keynote speaker will be Dr. James E. Melvin, Clinical Director of the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research of the National Institutes of Health, and Chief of the Section of Secretory Mechanisms and Dysfunction. 

Also featured will be “CaseCAT” (Critically Appraised Topics) competitions, featuring actual cases that exemplify unique and interesting aspects of dental practice combined with critically appraised literature reviews relevant those cases. 

“There will be dental products and services, vendors’ exhibits, and events planned just for fun, too," Dr. Crowe continued. “Dentists, students, postgraduates, residents, our medical colleagues, and those interested in research and the vendors’ exhibits are welcome to attend.” 

Events will wrap up with presentations of awards in a variety of categories.

Commercial enterprises are welcome to participate as exhibitors, sponsors, or both. Exhibitors will be provided display space.

For information about attending, Continuing Education, or exhibiting at or sponsoring Clinic and Research Day, contact Virginia Buglio at (312) 996-1027 or vbuglio@uic.edu. or log on to http://dentistry.uic.edu/departments/research/clinic_day/.

Continuing Education Courses Set
Posted on 12/16/2014

Continuing Education Courses to be Held at University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry

Several Continuing Education courses, held under the auspices of the Illinois State Dental Society (ISDS), are scheduled to be held at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry, 801 S. Paulina St., Chicago, IL 60612. The ISDS is an approved provider of Continuing Education and is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider.*

For more information or to register, or for refund and cancellation information, email Gloria Pitchford at gpitchford@isds.org, log on to www.isds.org, or call (800) 475-4737.

Anesthesia/Sedation Assistant Monitoring Clinical Certification Course

This course is offered as a Continuing Education experience for dental assistants and hygienists who work in dental or oral surgery offices in the State of Illinois where sedation or general anesthesia is administered. The course is designed to meet the requirements of the Illinois Dental Practice Act and the rules administering the Dental Practice Act. The course includes both lecture and clinical exposure.

Course objectives and competencies: The assistant will:

Become familiar with the anatomy and physiology involved with monitoring and airway maintenance in the sedated dental patient.

Obtain a basic understanding of the physiology of the respiratory, cardiovascular, and neurological systems as they related to anesthesia and sedation.

Become familiar with the health questionnaire and its application for the evaluation of the patient undergoing anesthesia/sedation and be able to link this information to the ASA classification.

Develop an understanding of the levels of sedation/anesthesia and be able to recognize these levels in the patient under dental sedation.

Acquire the skills required for monitoring the sedated patient, including monitoring of blood pressure, pulse, perspiration temperature, and level of consciousness.

Learn to operate automated monitoring devices including the EKG and pulse-oximeter.

Learn to complete the anesthesia record and make appropriate monitoring entries during the procedure and during recovery.

Learn basic management protocols for anesthesia-related emergencies and become more competent in assisting the dentist in their management.

Credit: 12 credit hours.

Dates: Wednesday, April 15, and Thursday, April 16, 2015; Wednesday, Oct. 14, and Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015. Course times to be announced.

Instructors: Dr. William Flick, ’74, Clinical Associate Professor, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

Fee: $525 ISDS member dentist staff; $850 non-member dentist staff.

Prerequisite: Current BLS certificate.

 

Coronal Polishing and Pit/Fissure Sealants Course

Course objectives: This course will provide dental assistants with the proper educational requirements as stated in Illinois law for application of pit and fissure sealants and coronal polishing which includes didactic study in anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and dental emergencies followed by a written exam.

This course also will include two hours of clinical experience on pit and fissure sealants and two hours on coronal polishing. The clinical instruction on coronal polishing will include work performed on a human subject.

At the completion of this course and prior to being permitted to perform these expanded functions in Illinois, the dental assistant must meet the following requirements:

Be 18 years of age and working as a dental assistant for at least 1,000 hours.

The supervising dentist must personally observe the successful placement of six sealants on a patient or patients by the dental assistant.

The successful participant will receive a certificate of completion.

Continental breakfast and lunch are provided.

Credit: Ten credit hours.

Dates: Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014; Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015; Saturday, April 18, 2015; Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015; Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015.

Instructors: Dr. Richard Perry, ’68, and Dr. James Bryniarski, ’78, Clinical Assistant Professor, Restorative Dentistry, and Katherine Lutz, RDH.

Fee: $450 ISDS member dentist staff; $800 non-member dentist staff.

Prerequisite: Must be at least age 18, and a dental assistant for at least 1,000 hours.

 

Local Anesthesia

Course objectives and content: This four-day course will satisfy the State of Illinois expanded function training requirements to allow registered dental hygienists to administer local anesthesia under the general supervision of a licensed dentist.

Dr. Stanley F. Malamed’s Handbook of Local Anesthesia (6th Edition) text is not included in the fee and must be independently purchased.

Credit: 32 credit hours.

Dates: Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 9 and 10 and 16 and 17, 2015.

Instructors: Dr. William Flick, ’74, Clinical Associate Professor; Dr. Michael Miloro, Department Head; Dr. Antonia Kolokythas, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMFS) ’04, MS Oral Sciences ’11, Assistant Professor; and Dr. Thomas Skiba, ’68, MS OMFS ’77, Clinical Assistant Professor, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

Fee: $950 ISDS member dentist staff; $1,100 non-member dentist staff.

Prerequisite: Current BLS certificate.

 

Nitrous Oxide Monitoring and Administration Course

Course objectives and content: This course for monitoring and administration of nitrous oxide by dental assistants and dental hygienists is designed to meet the certification requirements of the State of Illinois for expanded functions.

This course will include both didactic and clinical components in the monitoring and administration of nitrous oxide and advanced airway management. It will provide instruction in anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and dental emergencies as they relate to the use of nitrous oxide in the dental office.

After successful completion of this course the dental assistant can return to the private office and provide expanded function for the dental team and the monitoring of nitrous oxide, while the dental hygienists will be able to start and stop the flow of gas.

Credit: Six credit hours.

Dates: Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014; Wednesday, March 25, 2015; Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015; Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015.

Instructor: Dr. Larry Salzmann, Clinical Professor and Predoctoral Program Clinic Director, Department of Pediatric Dentistry.

Fee: $275 ISDS member dentist staff; $500 non-member dentist staff.

Prerequisite: Must be currently certified in CPR/BLS for healthcare providers, or its equivalent. A copy of your current BLS card must accompany registration form. This course is open to all qualified dental assistants for monitoring and dental hygienists for administering.

Meals: Continental breakfast and lunch included.

 

*The University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider.

ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professional in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry.

Brian Floriani, Dr. Jazmine Dillard and Dr. Marcio da Fonseca
Pediatric Dentistry Residents Provide Free Books to Youngsters
Posted on 11/4/2014

Second year University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry Pediatric Dentistry resident Dr. Jazmine B. Dillard and other members of the department are doing their part for child literacy. Since the beginning of 2014, with the support of Department Head Dr. Marcio da Fonseca, the department has partnered with Bernie’s Book Bank to provide free books to youngsters who are patients in the department.

Bernie’s Book Bank facilitates the collection, processing, and redistribution of new and used children’s books to significantly increase book ownership among at-risk infants, toddlers, and school-age children throughout Chicagoland.

“I was looking to start a literacy program when I saw information about Bernie’s on the Wintrust Financial Corp. billboard on the Mural Building next to the Kennedy Expressway,” Dillard explained.

She contacted Bernie’s, and they began an initiative in which Bernie’s provides individual bags of six age- and gender-appropriate books to residents to distribute to Pediatric Dentistry patients for free at both their initial and recall appointments.

“The patients and their families love it,” Dr. Dillard said.

Brian Floriani, Founder and Executive Director of Bernie’s Book Bank, recently spoke to Pediatric Dentistry residents at the College.

He thanked them for distributing books to their patients. “Our objective is to get to them at a young age,” Floriani explained. “Lots of these families don’t have books at all.”

He noted that everyone in the room was a reader as a child, which is a predictor of future success. “You literally read your way here,” Floriani said.

As part of the program, the residents talk to patients’ parents and ask them to both encourage youngsters to read, and to read to their children themselves.

"Even if the parent’s English isn’t strong or if he or she doesn’t speak English at all, getting the kid on his or her lap and flipping through the book makes a difference in the child’s literacy,” Floriani said, quoting a startling statistic that “in at-risk communities, 24% of children don’t even know what a book is.”

Only 30 minutes a day of reading, or being read to, makes a huge difference in child literacy, he said.

Floriani noted that supplies of books are “not an issue,” with book publishers and the public willing to donate children’s books to Bernie’s Book Bank. “It’s a logistics issue—how do we get the books to the children?” Floriani asked. “You’re doing that for us,” he told the residents.

Bernie’s hosts book drives in schools and churches and among corporations, and also has relationships with publishers who donate new books.

Floriani noted that “one book doesn’t do it. We want to have a constant flow of books. And, since we deal with a transient population, we want to set up a system in the area that no matter where a youngster receives social or healthcare services, books will be available.”

Bernie’s volunteers put in about 2,200 hours per month sorting and packing books.

To learn more about the College’s program, contact Dr. Dillard at jdaye2@uic.edu. For more information about Bernie’s, log on to www.berniesbookbank.org.

Faculty Promotions Announced
Posted on 11/13/2014

The Faculty Affairs Advisory Committee (FAAC) has announced this year’s University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry faculty promotions.

Promoted to Clinical Associate Professor were: Dr. Priscilla Chang, Restorative Dentistry; Dr. Mohamed Fayad, Endodontics; Dr. Rand Harlow, Restorative Dentistry; Dr. Nadia Kawar, Periodontics; and Dr. Adriana Semprum-Clavier, Restorative Dentistry.

Promoted to Clinical Professor were: Dr. Farhad Fayz, Restorative Dentistry; and Dr. Robert Rada, Oral Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences.

Dr. Praveen Gajendrareddy was promoted to Associate Professor of Periodontics.

Promoted to Professor were: Dr. Srilata Bagchi, Oral Biology; Dr. Michael Colvard, Oral Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences; Dr. G. William Knight, Restorative Dentistry; and Dr. Keiko Watanabe, Periodontics.

Mondopads
Mondopads Improve Small Group Learning
Posted on 10/30/2014

The College has recently invested in large electronic tablets to accompany the revamped curriculum in Small Group Learning (SGL) classes. Earlier this year, the College acquired five 55-inch Mondopads, which are being used by both students and faculty as digital whiteboards to promote collaborative and engaging learning.

A Mondopad is an all-in-one, wall-mountable computer and monitor equipped with a touch screen, Windows 7, and Microsoft Office. In addition, the College of Dentistry Mondopads have adjustable cameras (operated by remote control) and microphones for videoconferencing. The computers optimize the classroom experience by allowing students to work together and share information more easily.

“With its touch interface, Mondopad makes it simple for students to transition from the paper-based method of working through their SGL cases to a computer-based process,” said Nancy Norman, Instructional Development Specialist. “The new process offers more options than a paper-based method and is much more intuitive than a computer-based process that uses a mouse and keyboard.”

Mondopads bring a number of logistical improvements to the SGL program. Before, SGL groups used “large paper pads and easels” to display information and ideas, said Norman. Now, students can simply use the Mondopad’s whiteboard feature, which allows users to draw, create shapes, and type text onto a digital canvas.

In SGL, faculty and students use Mondopads to draw diagrams, display documents, and show relevant video clips. Incorporating the device into the SGL process not only uses less paper, but also makes the information more easily visible. Students and faculty can now use their iPads—which are part of the first and second year curriculum—to connect to the Mondopad through a special app and project their personal screen for the room to see.

In addition, the videoconferencing feature allows for both traditional videoconference meetings and enables the college to host new facilitator training, where they can view the group process via a one-sided connection, similar to a one-way mirror. Facilitators-in-training can observe SGL groups and discuss the process they are observing while also minimizing disruptions for students.

Norman first learned of this technology from Jay Dean, Director of Management Information Services. After attending a vendor fair to see a demo of the devices, Norman lent her support for the purchase.

“Since the new curriculum is fully implemented, the College felt this was a good time to install the technology,” she said. The acquisition of new technologies is just a small part of everything the College does to ensure that it remains a leader in innovative dental education.

“New technologies can be used in creative ways that [staff and faculty] never envisioned,” said Norman. “Our students are figuring out ways to take advantage of the technologies to better assist in their learning. That’s the best reason for the College to support use of this new tool.”

Dr. Blase Brown, Director of Small Group Learning, summed it up this way: “The use of the Mondopad has enhanced collaborative learning in SGL sessions by linking this technology with student groups’ shared resources using the University’s BOX cloud storage. The students build their case learning issues and then store individual research files in their group’s folder. These research files are then displayed on the Mondopad during the SGL session. This allows a visual resource for notes, photos, charts, graphs, biologic and clinical images, etc., which was not available previously. Having this displayed for the entire room, rather than individual paper notes, has created an environment for richer, interactive discussion about case learning objectives.”

For more information, contact Nancy Norman at (312) 355-0357 or nnorman@uic.edu.

Laura Douglas and Farah Shakir
Students Laura Douglas and Farah Shakir Named Schweitzer Fellows
Posted on 10/17/2014

The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship (ASF) has announced the selection of its 2014-15 class of Chicago Schweitzer Fellows. Students Laura Douglas and Farah Shakir of the UIC College of Dentistry are among 31 graduate students who will spend a year working to address barriers that impact the health of underserved communities and developing lifelong leadership skills.

In doing so, they will follow the example set by famed physician-humanitarian Albert Schweitzer, for whom their Fellowship is named.

“Schweitzer Fellowships change lives, both of the individual Fellows as well as those of the many vulnerable community members they serve through their Fellowship projects,” said Ray Wang, program director of the Schweitzer Fellowship program of Chicago. “Our Fellows learn to lead and innovate as they tackle complex health needs—skills they will use again and again throughout their professional careers. Meanwhile, their project participants learn information, skills, and behaviors that will assist them in leading healthier lives.”

Schweitzer Fellows develop and direct innovative service projects that address the root causes of health disparities in under-resourced communities, projects that are separate and in addition to their existing academic responsibilities. Each project is implemented in collaboration with a community-based health and/or social service organization.

Douglas proposes to increase oral health awareness and preventive care among the special needs population at the Arts of Life Studio at 2010 W. Carroll Ave. She also will incorporate arts activities to engage the community, and to support the studio’s efforts to help individuals with and without developmental disabilities realize their full potential.

Shakir will focus on oral disease prevention within the Iraqi refugee community. She plans to conduct community outreach in Arabic and English to assess and improve the community’s knowledge about oral health, and to address barriers to their receiving oral health care. Working together with Dr. Sheila Raja, Assistant Professor, Pediatric Dentistry, an expert in psychological trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), Shakir also hopes to address the underlying mental health issues that impact the community’s overall health.

For more about the Schweitzer Fellowships, log on to www.schweitzerfellowship.org.

College Community Enjoys Diversity Day
Posted on 1/28/2015

The College held its annual Diversity Day on Oct. 15, organized by the Diversity Advisory Committee. The festivities featured great food, ethnic entertainment, and increased awareness of the different cultures across the staff, students, and faculty at the College through dealing with co-workers, students, and patients.

“We had a most impressive diversity celebration,” said Dean Clark Stanford. “The variety of food presented by our diverse student organizations was followed by a range of talents from singing, dancing, and clarinet playing to a very emotional community singing led by Uvoh Onoriobe (DMDAS Class of 2016) to honor the families in Africa suffering from Ebola.”

After Dr. Stanford welcomed the audience, Dr. Charu Thakral, Associate Director, Diversity Educational and Research Initiatives, UIC Office of Diversity, also greeted the assembly. Mark White and Sana Siraj were the hosts.

Along with Onoriobe, singers included Jackie Magallanes, Jackie Kalan, Dr. Thiago Vinhas, Tarnit Kapoor, Ramanpreet Nanra, and Shruti Tandon.

A modern hip-hop dance was led by Vu Quach, and Indian dance was provided by Nisha Garg, Isha Parikh, and Tania Bajaj. Katherine Janda and Eric Moy played clarinet.

As part of Diversity Day, each of the College’s student organizations visited and researched a Chicago neighborhood and created posters showcasing the demographics of diversity in Chicago neighborhoods.

Student organizations participating in providing food at Diversity Day were Alpha Omega, the American Association of Public Health, American Association of Women Dentists, American Student Dental Association, Association of Muslim Dental Students, Christian Medical Dental Association, Dental Charity Ball, Dental Student Council, Hispanic Student Dental Association, Illinois Academy of General Dentistry,  Indian Student Dental Association, Korean American Student Dental Association, Middle Eastern Dental Student Association, Pride Alliance, Student National Dental Association, and Student Research Group.

Diversity Advisory Committee members are Angelica Alvarez, Virginia Buglio, Jackie Kalan, Khatija Noorullah, and Colleen Scroll.  Many other staff, students, and faculty also volunteered and provided help as well.