IU School of Dentistry’s 237 Graduates Hail from 23 States and 23 Nations

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Dean John Williams delivered the commencement address, and Hannah Monnett gave the Dental
Assisting Class farewell as class president.

A new two-day celebratory program, a farewell address from a new dean of dentistry, and recognition of 237 members of the graduating classes were the highlights of Indiana University School of Dentistry’s 2011 Commencement celebration, held at the Indiana Convention Center May 14-15.

On Saturday, IU School of Dentistry Dean John N. Williams Jr. welcomed an audience of more than 2,000 to the school’s Pre-Commencement Ceremony in the convention center’s Exhibit Hall E, congratulating the graduates and recognizing the contributions of the graduates’ families. Joining the dean and a group of faculty was Dr. Uday Sukhatme, executive vice chancellor and dean of the faculties, IUPUI.

Families and friends of the 237 members of the Classes of 2011 gathered with IU dental school faculty and staff to pay tribute to the graduates, whose degrees and certificates were earned in dental assisting (30), dental hygiene (49), public health dental hygiene (6), dentistry (108), and a variety of graduate-level programs (44).

The IU dental school’s Classes of 2011 reflect the far-reaching reputation of the institution, with hometowns listed as far north on the globe as North Pole, Alaska (dental graduate Jason Hemphill) and as far south as Surabaya, Indonesia (dental graduate Patricia Hadiwidjaja). The graduating classes represent 23 U.S. states and 23 countries or regions, with 162 graduates from Indiana hometowns, 41 from other states in the U.S., and 34 from outside the U.S.

In a departure from IU’s dental graduation ceremony, which traditionally invites guest speakers to deliver the commencement address, Dr. Williams assumed that role himself this year, at the close of his first year as dean of the IU School of Dentistry. He became the ninth dean in the school’s 132-year history last summer.

In his address, Dean Williams referred to commencement as the most important event in the life of the IU School of Dentistry. He touched upon historical highlights of the school, telling the graduates that in embracing their future they should remember that their alma mater has embraced its own future over the decades by growing and changing as it continually strives to be vital, relevant, and fully committed to the preparation of its graduates.

He urged them to find their passion, and to bear in mind three points as they begin their careers in the healthcare professions: Understand that the world-class education they have received at IU represents only the foundation for a professional life that must remain dedicated to life-long learning; embody professionalism in everything they do and become part of solutions to society’s complex problems, both locally and globally; and give back to society. “Society is counting on you to use your education for the good of others,” he said. “We are pleased to add your names to the alumni roll…. We expect great things from you from this day forward….”

Preceding Dr. Williams’ address were remarks on behalf of Indiana University given by Executive Vice Chancellor Uday Sukhatme, IUPUI, who said he wished to convey a message to the graduates that could be succinctly delivered in two words: Get engaged. He cited IUPUI’s strong and wide-ranging service-learning program and the impact it has on the community. “Carry on with your job and family life, and when the right opportunity comes up, say yes – and get engaged with your community as best as you can,” he said. “You will get more satisfaction in life, and the world will be a better place.”

Four of the graduates gave farewell remarks on behalf of their classes: Hannah M. Monnett, dental assisting president; Tiffany White, dental hygiene president; John Russell Yancey, dentistry president; and Dr. Samira M. Toloue, graduate programs representative.

Each graduate’s own final remarks were read to the audience as the graduate crossed the stage to receive his or her diploma or certificate. Graduates receiving the Doctor of Dental Surgery degree went through an additional hooding ceremony.

Dental graduates were given the choice of being hooded by either an IU professor or a member of their own family holding a doctoral degree. Twenty-one graduates were hooded by fathers, mothers, spouses, siblings, or other relatives.

Faculty members participating in the hooding were Drs. Michael P. Baumgartner, Steven E. Dixon, Vanchit John, and Trevor E. Treasure.         

Saturday’s Pre-Commencement was complemented by a graduation awards program and breakfast, held for School of Dentistry graduates and their families at the Indiana Convention Center on Sunday morning. From there, graduates and faculty moved to IUPUI’s 2011 Commencement, also held at the convention center. Additional dental faculty hooders at the IUPUI exercise were Drs. Timothy J. Carlson, Theresa A. Gonzalez, and Matthew C. Moeller.

At Dentistry’s awards program, 50 graduating students were recognized with 34 honors and 78 awards, including 17 graduates who were inducted at a previous ceremony into Dentistry’s national honor societies: Sigma Phi Alpha (dental hygiene) and Omicron Kappa Upsilon (dentistry). Dental graduate Elizabeth A. Kirsch was also previously honored at the IUPUI Chancellor’s Academic Honors Convocation as the IU School of Dentistry’s Outstanding Student for 2011.

Graduates of the dental school are among nearly 18,500 IU graduates system-wide in 2011, the largest class in IU’s history.

Executive Vice Chancellor Uday Sukhatme

Tiffany White, Dental Hygiene Class President

John Russell Yancey, Dental Class President

Dr. Samira Toloue, Graduate Programs
Representative

A list of this year’s honorees and award recipients follows.

Indiana University School of Dentistry

2011 Graduation Award Recipients

Honors

Candidates, Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree

Highest Distinction
William J. Downie
Claire L. Hemphill
Jason D. Hemphill
Elizabeth A. Kirsch
Aliaksandr Kurshuk

High Distinction
Jason P. Bivens
Megan J. Davenport
Ross T. Freeman
Heather N. Hirsch
Anthony J. Imburgia
Blake T. Prather
Igor Ristevski
Brittany D. Swartz

Candidates, Associate of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene

Highest Distinction
Brittany N. Jaco

High Distinction
Brooke N. Reisman
Kayla L. Tarr

Distinction
Erica N. Johnson

Dean’s Gold Awards for National Boards
(90 or above on Parts I and II)

Heather N. Hirsch
Elizabeth A. Kirsch

Dean’s Silver Awards for National Boards
(90 or above on Part I or Part II)

Megan J. Davenport
Ross T. Freeman
Claire L. Hemphill
Jason D. Hemphill
Aliaksandr Kurshuk
Blake T. Prather
Brent E. Sexton
Brittany D. Swartz

Theta Chapter, Sigma Phi Alpha
Dental Hygiene Honor Society Alumni
Brittany N. Jaco
Erica N. Johnson
Brooke N. Reisman
Elizabeth A. Rosenberger
Kayla L. Tarr

Theta Theta Chapter, Omicron Kappa Upsilon
Dental Honor Society Alumni
Jason P. Bivens
Megan J. Davenport
William J. Downie
Ross T. Freeman
Claire L. Hemphill*
Jason D. Hemphill*
Heather N. Hirsch
Anthony J. Imburgia
Elizabeth A. Kirsch*
Aliaksandr Kurshuk
Blake T. Prather
Brittany D. Swartz
*OKU Outstanding Students

AWARDS

Dental Assisting

Erin C. Crouch
• Dental Assisting Academic Award

Kadi M. Gano
• Dental Assisting Clinical Achievement Award

 

Dental Hygiene

Jane A. DePalma
• Procter & Gamble Prevention Award in Dental Hygiene

Amanda N. Greene
• Dr. Tillman E. Miller Clinical Achievement Award in Dental Hygiene, 2nd place

Brittany N. Jaco
• Indiana University School of Dentistry Alumni Association Harriett F. Hine Award
• Hu-Friedy Award
• Rossya Kaufman Memorial Award in Dental Hygiene

Erica N. Johnson
• Colgate S.T.A.R. Award

Brooke N. Reisman
• Rossya Kaufman Memorial Award in Dental Hygiene

Anna M. Smith
• Johnson Public Health Dental Hygiene Scholarship
• Student American Dental Hygienists’ Association Leadership Award

Kayla L. Tarr
• Dr. Tillman E. Miller Clinical Achievement Award in Dental Hygiene, 1st place

Deanna A. Walton
• Johnson Public Health Dental Hygiene Scholarship
• Johnson & Johnson Professional Excellence in Dental Hygiene Award

Ashley A. Webb
• A. Rebekah Fisk Memorial Award of the Indiana Dental Hygienists’ Association

Tiffany White
• American Association of Public Health Dentistry Award for Dental Hygiene

 

Doctor of Dental Surgery

Branko Alavanja
• Quintessence Publishing Company Award in Periodontics

Karen E. Baird
• American Association of Women Dentists Eleanor J. Bushee Memorial Award

Jason P. Bivens
• Academy of Operative Dentistry Award

Matthew J. Bueter
• Certificate of Merit, American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Award

Jill S. Carson
• International College of Dentists Student Leadership Award
• Delta Dental Fund Student Leadership Award

Lily Y. Chen
• American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Dental Implant Award
• American Academy of Implant Dentistry Award

Megan J. Davenport
• American Association of Public Health Dentistry Award

William J. Downie
• Alpha Omega Scholarship

David R. Felt
• DENTSPLY Merit Award in Removable Prosthodontics

Ross T. Freeman
• American Dental Society of Anesthesiology Horace Wells Award
• Glenn J. Pell Award

Allison M. Frounfelter
• Academy of General Dentistry Award
• Indiana Dental Association Award

Allison N. Harris
• American Academy of Oral Medicine Certificate of Merit and Award in Oral Medicine

Claire L. Hemphill
• International Congress of Oral Implantologists/Sullivan Schein Achievement Award
• Alpha Omega Scholarship

Jason D. Hemphill
• Alpha Omega Scholarship
• American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Award 

Heather N. Hirsch
• Research Honors Program – Certificate of Achievement
• Quintessence Publishing Company Award in Restorative Dentistry
• Pierre Fauchard Academy Award
• Dr. Tillman E. Miller Clinical Achievement Award in Dentistry

Anthony J. Imburgia
• John F. Johnston Award
• Indiana University School of Dentistry Alumni Association Maynard K. Hine Award
• James E. Humphrey, D.D.S. Memorial Scholarship

Elizabeth A. Kirsch
• Whip Mix Hanau Best of the Best Excellence in Prosthodontics Award
• Alpha Omega Scholarship
• Chancellor's Scholar (presented at the IUPUI Chancellor’s Academic Honors Convocation

Aliaksandr Kurshuk
• Academy of Dental Materials Award
• American Academy of Esthetic Dentistry Award

Claire MacIntyre
• Dr. Charles E. and Janice B. Kem Award

Carter M. McCrea
• Indiana Society of Pediatric Dentistry Award
• James E. Humphrey, D.D.S. Memorial Scholarship

Emily S. McCrea
• American Association of Orthodontists Award
• Quintessence Publishing Company Award in Research

Emaun S. Niknafs
• American Academy of Dental Practice Administration Foundation Certificate of Merit

Anand D. Patel
• Indiana Society of Periodontists Award

Scott M. Peifer
• American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Award
• James L. Maus Memorial Scholarship

Blake T. Prather
• American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology Award

Igor Ristevski
• American Academy of Periodontology Award

Brent E. Sexton
• American Academy of Gold Foil Operators Award
• American Equilibration Society Achievement Award

Kyle O. Sheets
• Academy of Osseointegration Outstanding Dental Student in Implant Dentistry Award

Brittany D. Swartz
• American College of Prosthodontists Award
• Academy of General Dentistry Award

Michael K. Talbott
• American College of Dentists Outstanding Student Leader Award

Eric J. Wagoner
• Indianapolis General Dentistry Study Club Award

Jon R. Willison
• American Association of Endodontists Student Achievement Award in Endodontics

John R. Yancey
• American Student Dental Association Award

Isaac N. Zeckel
• American Association of Oral Biologists Oral Biology Award