Philanthropy Corner

The Class of 1995 Reunion Brings Alumni and Faculty Together Again

Class reunions traditionally reconnect classmates to each other and their alma mater. It is also a great way for alumni to reconnect with faculty members who have formed meaningful bonds with students throughout the years. When the Class of 1995 held their 25-year reunion reception and dinner on February 28, 2020 at the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, they took advantage of the chance to see many of their favorite professors and renew those powerful connections—where students and teachers become colleagues and friends.

“The presence of our faculty at our 25th reunion dinner was one of the highlights of our evening,” said University Regent Nava Fathi ’95, an assistant professor of endodontics and member of the Dugoni School Foundation Board, who also served as co-chair of her class reunion committee. “The fact that faculty members took the time to come see us and spend time with us meant the world to our entire class.”

Dr. Alan Budenz, president of the Alumni Association, agreed, saying, “I am close with many former students. The Class of 1995 has great people in it and I have gone to their class reunions almost every year. Yes, the Class of 1995 has a reunion dinner during the Alumni Meeting every year so it’s a class that I am very close to. We always have a ton of fun.”

The Class of 1995 asked Dr. Eddie Hayashida to save the date for their reunion celebration nearly a year in advance. Enjoying his busy retirement, Hayashida recalled, “As Associated Student Body (ASB) faculty advisor I had the opportunity to work with several members of the Class of 1995 as they assumed club, class and ASB leadership roles. The Class of ’95 had strong student leaders with quite a bit of resolve to get things done and make an impact. The class was really unified and supportive of each other.” Thinking about all the activities he had organized and attended with the Class of 1995, including their Over the Hump party, Halloween celebration, Asilomar retreat, Alumni/Graduate Banquet, as well as golf, basketball and softball events, Hayashida concluded, “I think we’ve always enjoyed mutual respect and admiration.”

Class reunions are more than “a walk down memory lane” for alumni. The reunions also offer an opportunity to celebrate together, to make new memories and to connect more deeply with faculty who helped them grow personally and professionally. Fathi said, “We laughed together and reminisced about our dental school days. We recognize that our faculty helped to shape us into who we are today and we are so grateful for everything they have taught us.”

While Covid-19 has temporarily brought a halt to in-person gatherings, the Alumni Association is planning a virtual alumni meeting and reunion event for Feb. 24-27, 2021. Learn more at

Donor Wall Expansion Taking Shape

The Dugoni School’s Donor Wall expansion project has entered the next phase of design. With nearly 200 new donor name tiles to add to the more than 160 existing tiles, the development, design and photo and building operations teams had a unique puzzle to solve. How tall can we build the donor wall? How low should the lowest tile go? How large of a donor wall can the building’s structure support?

The solution to this puzzle came with the novel idea of expanding the existing Donor Wall into a Donor Hall. The majority of new donor recognition tiles will be installed directly across the hallway from the existing Donor Wall. Soon to be occupying both sides of the first floor’s main hallway, the Dugoni School of Dentistry’s principal donor recognition installation will create an impressive, immersive experience for members of the Dugoni School family and their guests.

The Donor Hall will incorporate a new statement ribbon, carrying forward original design concepts. Complementing the existing “Building Our Future, Embracing Our Legacy” ribbon, the new ribbon will reflect the dental school’s purpose “Helping People Lead Healthy Lives.”

This new design necessitates removal of the existing interactive twin touch monitors, metal cabinet and “Legacy of Philanthropy” statement ribbon. Consolidating the two monitors into one larger, portrait-oriented monitor, the new touch screen will be positioned in a manner that facilitates access and aligns with the Americans with Disability Act best practices. The interactive monitor will provide Dugoni School of Dentistry fundraising campaign histories, photo slideshows and other philanthropy-related content at the touch of a finger.

Do you have a Donor Hall or other donor recognition puzzle for us to solve? Contact Matthew Schueller, donor relations manager, at or 415.351.7179.