The Dugoni School of Dentistry has much to be proud of. We have first-rate educational programs, a genuine spirit of philanthropy, a history of leadership in dental education and other qualities important to our success. I’m frequently moved by all that we have accomplished and everything we are working toward. In my role as dean it can be easy to get absorbed by the myriad of school priorities and projects, but I make a point to remember that we wouldn’t be where we are today without one key ingredient—our people.
And that’s what—or rather, who—this issue of Contact Point focuses on. We profile a sample of our first-year students who have joined the dental school as members of the DDS Class of 2015. These students share their stories of how they decided to enter the dental profession and describe the roads that led them to joining the Dugoni School of Dentistry family.
You’ll also find an article by Dr. David Chambers exploring one of our core values, humanism, along with competency—which have become requirements at all American dental schools as determined by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. A competency-based education in a humanistic environment has shaped our students into thoughtful professionals for decades and is now considered one of the hallmarks of a premier dental education.
In the Current Issue section you’ll find interesting updates about what’s been keeping our students, faculty and staff busy these past few months. For example, we’ve launched a new student exchange program with two Chinese dental schools and we modified our first-year student retreat to incorporate a focus on community service in San Francisco. Our Main Clinic has also seen changes as we rolled out more of our much-anticipated clinical model that features eight smaller group practices instead of the previous four.
Of course, we can’t forget about our future campus in San Francisco’s SoMa district. In this issue you’ll find an update on our recent progress, including the start of major renovations on the 155 Fifth Street structure. I’m amazed by how far we’ve come with this project and look forward to watching plans turn into reality.
This issue also features the 2012 Honor Roll of Donors to the school between July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2012. We are fortunate to have generous alumni, friends and others who regularly support our people and programs, whether it’s through scholarships, endowments, program and clinic support, future facilities planning, technology or other initiatives that benefit our students, patients, faculty and staff. Thank you to everyone who has made a gift to support excellence in dental education.
The Dugoni School of Dentistry family has much to celebrate. This is an exciting time for our school and our success wouldn’t be possible without all of you, our people.
Dr. Patrick J. Ferrillo, Jr.