DAY TWO of the 2021 Midwest Dental Conference

Friday, April 16th, DAY TWO of the 2021 Midwest Dental Conference, offered a packed schedule of online speakers, including sessions on everything from office oral surgery and implant esthetics to more successful posterior composite resin restorations to growth in a flat dental economy.

Besides earning CE credit while sharpening their skills and learning new ones, those attending were able to visit the Virtual Exhibit Hall before and between sessions. Each “booth” allowed visitors to learn about its company, interact with company reps and enter to win fun prizes such as a Dental Survival Kit from Commerce Bank or an Amazon gift card from New Horizons. Each booth also has a link to sign up for the MDC raffle, which includes one FREE registration for the 2022 conference.

Friday evening also saw the virtual return of our Pouring from the Heart fundraiser, with proceeds finding student-patient clinical experiences at the dental school .  You can read more about it here.

The MDC, which sadly had to be canceled last year because of the pandemic, returned this year in a reimagined virtual format attracting attendees and speakers from all over the country. The conference continues today and Sunday.

Check back here for daily updates, and mark your 2022 calendars for next year’s MDC, April 21-24, when we hope to see you in person!

MDC 2021 Gets Underway

DAY ONE of the 2021 Midwest Dental Conference, Thursday, April 15th, featuring MDC’s signature specialty lectures was a great success!  Sadly, the MDC, which had to be canceled last year because of the pandemic but returned this year in a reimagined virtual format attracting attendees and speakers from all over the country.  And on the eve of the conference, a special ceremony on Wednesday for the Rho Chapter of the Omicron Kappa Upsilon honor society welcomed new members and honored scholarship recipients.

The Thursday specialty lectures featured:

The 25th Annual Dr. Dan Cruz Memorial Lecture
Terry Donovan, DDS, Cer. Prosth., presented “Practical Pearls for Clinica Use:  A Day with Terry Donovan”

The 30th Annual Dr. Peter Fedi Periodontics Lecture
Suheil Michael Boutros, DDS, MS, FACD, FICD, spoke in the morning on “Implants in the Esthetic Zone: How to Avoid and Manage Complications,” and in the afternoon on “The Growing Prevalence of Peri-Implantitis: Diagnosis and Management of the Disease.”

The 28th Annual Dr. Robert Allen Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Lecture
Joe Niamtu III, DMD, presented “Common Cosmetic Procedures to Integrate into the OMS Practice.”

The school’s Dental Alumni Association. Dental Hygienists Alumni Association and Roy J. Rinehart Foundation boards also met Thursday afternoon.

On Wednesday, April 14, 2021, the OKU ceremony recognized initiates Lyndzie Brace, Abigale Frazier, Michelle Hendrix, Jaime Masunaga, Taylor Michelson, Bryson Nakatani, Brianne Schmiegelow, Cassandra Shannon and Megan Yamaguchi. This year’s faculty initiates were Dr. Mabel Salas andDr. Linda Seabaugh. Interim Dean Russell Melchert was an honorary initiate.

This year’s scholarships and their recipients are the William S. Kramer Award, Mahzad Jalili; and the Richard Ackerman OKU Scholarship Awards, Samuel Bertholf, Jumanah Behbehani, Richard Boehm, Bryce Boyd, Megan Ching, Katherine Hayes, Stephanie Kubik, Mikayla Stevens and Devonshire Whyte.

Check back here for daily conference updates.

And mark your 2022 calendars for next year’s MDC, April 21-24 when we hope to see you in person!

Dental Students Bolster Area Supply of Trained Vaccinators

The School of Dentistry last week added 119 third- and fourth-year dental students to the UMKC pool of trained vaccinators.

The students were trained the week of April 5 by Meghan Wendland, D.D.S., M.P.H., an assistant professor in the dental school, with help from faculty at the School of Nursing and Health Studies.

Those students will go into the database of students from all four UMKC health sciences schools who are trained to give the COVID vaccines, said Wendland, who oversees public health and interprofessional education efforts at the School of Dentistry.

The pool of student vaccinators is a great asset for a variety of vaccine providers, including Truman Medical Centers, the UMKC Health Equity Institute’s partnerships with area churches, and recent UMKC-wide vaccination events.

Students at one of the recent training sessions noted that the “stick and quick” vaccine technique is different from slow, steady dental anesthesia injections.

“The instruction was very clear, and I hope I get to help with the vaccinations,” said Andrew White, a third- year student. “It’s a little bit of time that could save lives.”

Another student, Riley Herr, said, “It’s good to learn another technique. This is simple and straightforward, and the instructors made it easy.”


The Race Is On! Hospital Hill Run Returns as In-person Event June 5

Get ready to hit the pavement!

After adapting to COVID restrictions and holding a virtual race last year, Kansas City’s Hospital Hill Run (HHR) is back as a live, in-person event on June 5. Whether you walk or run, and whether you prefer a 5K, 10K or half-marathon distance, make plans to join the city’s oldest foot race and the first live half-marathon event in the Kansas City Metro this spring. Here’s the official HHR statement:

The Hospital Hill Run has been given the green light to move forward with a live event, as scheduled for 6/5/21, pending any unforeseen circumstances. Health and wellness of our participants is our top priority and all city and state protocols will be followed.

Read more.

Enjoying the Annual Student, Staff, Faculty and Friends Variety Show Virtually

Thursday, February 25, 2021, the Student National Dental Association/Hispanic Student Dental Association (SNDA/HSDA) sponsored the annual Student, Staff, Faculty and Friends Virtual Variety Show. This event, over many years, has proven to be an undeniable favorite for the dental school family. For one moment, students, staff and faculty were able to display their talents and at the same time celebrate the School of Dentistry’s rich diversity. Further, the event is intended to coincide with the commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s Birthday and the celebration of Black History Month.

Co-hosts for the Variety Show were Rukevwe Erhenede (DDS 2022) President of SNDA/HSDA. Rukevwe was accompanied by Lena Adams, (DDS 2022) Vice President of SNDA/HSDA.
Among the ten participants were future engineer, Riley Cottrell, who played “Fur Elise” by Ludwig van Beethoven, on the piano, Sumner Academy of Arts and Science student, Kaden Hall, played two piano selections “Daydream” by William L. Gullock and “Minuet” by George Philip Tilma and Alena Kirk, 4th Grader at Oak Hill Elementary School, played and sang “Royals” by Lorde. Lindsey Mackey, member UMKC Dental Research Explorer post since 2019, and Drew Baxter, sophomore at Central Christian College of the Bible, played and performed “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat. Erin Gilmore, a staff member in BMC and professionally trained performer and instructor, sang “How Could I Ever Know” from the Secret Garden. Taylor Johnson, (DDS 2022) performed magic tricks. Casey Aschinger, (DDS 2023), sang and played “Afterglow” by Ed Sheeran. John L. Cottrell, Director of Minority and Special Programs, gave his rendition of “Dance with My Father” by Luther Vandross. Katherine Hayes and Luke Komotos, (both DDS 2022), performed a dental school parody. Anh Nguyen (DDS 2204), performed a dance routine to “I Can’t Stop Me” by TWICE.

The Student, Staff, Faculty and Friends Virtual Variety Show continues to be a success in a large part because of the support rendered by the School of Dentistry family. Faculty Advisors for SNDA/HSDA are Dr. Derrick Williams, Dr. Tanya Gibson, Dr. Meghan Wendland and John L. Cottrell.

The Student National Dental Association/Hispanic Student Dental Association thanks all who attended and extended their support to the performers.

See screen cap highlights here.

Retirees Receive a Spirited Virtual Sendoff

A combined 146 years of service were celebrated February 24, 2021 at a spring retirement event.   Hosted by Interim Dean Russell Melchert, the virtual event recognized the service and loyalty of four retiring faculty and staff and included many enjoyable anecdotes and memories from their supervisors and coworkers. Honored by colleagues, students, family and friends were: Romualdo (Roy) Abella, Dental Maintenance, for 35 years of service, Sharon Codilla, Advanced Education Program in General Dentistry, 38 years of service, Dr. Gary McReynolds, Department of Restorative Clinical Sciences, 39 years of service, Lynn Prine, Radiology, 8 years of service and Dr. Richard Prine, Department of Restorative Clinical Sciences, for 26 years of service.  Each received a commemorative photo of the school personalized with wishes from their colleagues.

ASDA Chapter and Student Heather Moore Honored

The American Student Dental Association awards chapters the PFM Crown award for excellence in creating innovative and engaging content for their members in 2020. This year, the UMKC ASDA chapter has been selected as a finalist!  Watch the video they created for the district finalists here.

Heather Moore (DDS 2023) has been elected to the American Student Dental Association of the Board of Trustees. She will be serving as District Eight Trustee, which oversees six chapters including University of Iowa, Creighton University, University of Minnesota, University of Nebraska, A.T. Still University and University of Missouri – Kansas City. Her role will include guiding chapters in our district and acting as the official liaison between the local chapters, the district and national ASDA. During her term, she hopes to champion impactful discussion on a National level to advocate for further diversity within the profession of dentistry!

Congratulations to the chapter and to Heather!

Dr. Carol McArthur Among Researchers Identifying People Testing Positive for HIV But Showing No Signs of Live Virus

Researchers found an “unusually high number of people” in the Democratic Republic of Congo who have tested positive for HIV antibodies but show no signs of the live virus – without the use of treatments and refer to as HIV “elite controllers.

Dr. Carol McArthur, a professor in the Department of oral and craniofacial sciences at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry and director of residency research in pathology at the Truman Medical Center, said every new HIV discovery is “another piece in the evolutionary jigsaw puzzle.”

Dr. McArthur is a researcher and one of the authors of the findings published yesterday in an article, “A high prevalence of potential HIV elite controllers identified over 30 years in Democratic Republic of Congo”, published in EBioMedicine, part of The Lancet family of medical publications.

Read more about the findings and article here and also here.

Shonte’ Reed, First-Year UMKC Dental Student, Featured in News Story About First African American Dentist in Kansas City

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Dr. Anne Lambert Johnson is a dentist, mentor, philanthropist and pioneer in Kansas City.

She is the first African American dentist in Kansas City and has been practicing for 47 years.

Her long history reveals the struggles that many African American dentists faced before the Civil Rights Act of 1965.

“I started dental school and never looked back,” Dr. Johnson said as she smiled and talked about the beginning of her career.

Johnson has an undergraduate degree from Virginia Union University. She attended Howard University, a historically Black research university in Washington D.C. where she earned her master’s degree in molecular biology and her dental degree.

Dr. Johnson is focused on the future, caring for her patients and mentoring African American girls, encouraging them to consider becoming a dentist.

“I’ve had four or five women who are now practicing who came and practiced with me for a little time,” Dr. Johnson said, beaming with joy.

Shonte’ Reed, is a first-year dental student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City; and Dr. Johnson is her mentor and hero.

Find the full story from KSHB-TV, Channel 41, here.

Simmer-Beck Appointed Missouri State Champion for 100 Million Mouths

Dr. Melanie Simmer-Beck, Chair & Professor, Department of Dental Public Health and Behavioral Science, for her appointment as the Missouri State Champion for the 100 Million Mouths Campaign to serve as a resource and advocate to promote integration of oral health education in health profession school curriculums.  Missouri was one of six states selected in the U.S. for this project (because the oral health of Missourians is so poor).

Find additional information about the oral health in Missouri here.