College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics

Dean's Message

Our alumni play a central role in improving oral health care in Iowa. For the vast majority of the state, you are the face of our college and of the dental profession in Iowa. Spring is a busy time with several alumni meetings, and I've enjoyed reconnecting with some of you in Chicago, Denver, Portland, and in Cedar Rapids tonight at the Iowa Dental Association reception next Friday at the Iowa Dental Association's Annual Session in Des Moines. I hope to see you in Cedar Rapids! ~Clark Stanford

Updates for May 5, 2023–May 11, 2023

Four first-year dental students at the 2023 White Coat Ceremony

2023 White Coat Ceremony

Last Thursday night, we granted our first-year dental students faculty-supervised clinical privileges at their White Coat Ceremony. Iowa Dentistry is one of the few dental colleges in the country that grants such privileges during the first year of a student's dental education. The white coat symbolizes the beginning of a dental student’s career as a health care professional. As a college, we are proud of what our first-year students have accomplished and look forward to the great things that you will accomplish for our profession.  

Brian Howe, Governor Reynolds, and Clark Stanford

State of Iowa adopts Dentists and Dental Hygienists Licensure Compact

In the United States, each state sets its own licensure requirements for dentists and dental hygienists. As a result, many states have different standards and hurdles that make it difficult for dentists and dental hygienists to transfer their credentials from one state to another. Governor Kim Reynolds signed a bill making Iowa the first-in-the-nation to adopt the Dentists and Dental Hygienists Licensure CompactSix other states are currently considering this legislation. Details about the bill, photos from the signing, and additional information about the compact is available on the Iowa Dentistry website.

Kelby Scandrett

Scandrett receives Board of Regents Staff Excellence Award

The Board of Regents awarded Kelby Scandrett, nurse manager in the Department of Periodontics, a 2023 Board of Regents Staff Excellence Award. This award recognizes Scandrett's accomplishments and the impact that he has had on the State of Iowa. Scandrett is the principal trainer for CPR within the college and has successfully performed CPR on more than 700 Iowans. With his wealth of knowledge and experience, Scandrett is instrumental in leading educational programs to raise awareness of many public health risks. Additionally, he established a program for basic life support training and certification in the college. His leadership style has influenced other supervisors, and the concept of patient safety as a quality metric is being infused throughout the college.

Kearstin Bisnett

Kearstin Bisnett is new Continuing Education Program Manager

The University of Iowa is a leader in providing new and relevant continuing education for dentists and dental support staff in the State of Iowa. Kearstin Bisnett has stepped into a new role at the college as the Continuing Education Program Manager and Special Events coordinator. Kearstin has a bachelor’s degree in education and has previously worked in continuing education and large event planning prior to coming to Iowa. During this time of transition, we appreciate your patience. If you have questions or concerns about continuing education at Iowa Dentistry, please contact Kearstin Bisnett going forward.

Steve Nelson

Steven Nelson (''87 DDS) receives AAOMS Presidential Achievement Award

At the annual meeting of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) last fall, Steven Nelson ('87 DDS) was elected to his 21st term as Speaker of the House and also received AAOMS's 2022 Presidential Achievement Award. He is a member of the Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children Cleft Palate and Craniofacial Center and practices in oral and maxillofacial surgery at Nelson, Rollert & Wells Associates in Denver, Colo. He also is past chair of the Small Donor Committee of the Colorado Dental Political Action Committee, a member of the Colorado Dental Association Government Relations Council and a volunteer with the Colorado Dental Lifeline Network (after serving as president).

Saxophone players at Iowa Dentistry

Saxophone group plays for Iowa Dentistry

Lynn Conway's saxophone group played some music for faculty, staff, residents, students, and patients a couple of weeks ago in the Iowa Dentistry main entrance area. You can see some of their performance on YouTube.

YouTube video on Why Iowa: Clinical Experience

Why Iowa: Clinical experience

Early patient experiences, including for first-year dental students, and Iowa's combined clerkship and comprehensive care approach to dental education helps Iowa rank among the top schools in amount of clinical experiences.

Brook Ann's Review

Kudos to you

Brook Ann's review: "I want to have a consultation for my wisdom teeth. Everyone was professional and friendly! I feel like those who helped me went above and beyond. The dentist is professional and personable."


Collaborative and Innovative Research

Mahrous A, Botsko DL, Elgreatly A, Tsujimoto A, Qian F, Schneider GB. The use of artificial intelligence and game-based learning in removable partial denture design: A comparative study. J Dent Educ. 2023;1-12.

The AiDental RPD Designer is an Algorithm based software with basic AI functionality as a decision-making tool for removeable partial denture design. Its algorithms were coded with the logic of RPD design, allowing the software to process data input from the user and design RPD frameworks. This allows the software to take informatin about a given case, for example, missing teeth and abutment tooth conditions like tooth undercut location and depth, vestibule characteristics, patient esthetic requirements, and occlusal contact location; then the program analyzes the case, provides an illustration, and generates a list of compatible RPD designs. 

This study compared student performance in removable partial denture (RPD) design during a pre-clinical course on removable partial dentures with and without using AiDental. The researchers found that students appreciated the program and that AiDental's automated feedback and gamification techniques had a positive effect on student grades. Thus, the results suggest that AiDental has the potential to be a useful pre-clinical teaching tool.

White coat laying on a chair

Healthcare History: First White Coat Ceremony

In response to scandals among students in medical school, healthcare doctoral programs begin emphasizing that healthcare students are fledgling members of the healthcare community. This first white coat ceremony took place in this context in 1993 sponsored by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation. Medical students would have a white coat placed around their shoulders and they would recite the Hippocratic Oath, a symbol of them being a member of the medical profession. Similarly in dentistry, white coat ceremonies symbolize the first steps that a dental student takes in becoming a member of the dental profession as they recite the dental oath. 


May 5, Dental Alumni Reception in conjunction with IDA Annual Meeting, Cedar Rapids, IA, 4:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.

May 5, Noma—a global oral health disease, Fidel Strub, Galagan B and Zoom, (CE for students only; meets cultural competency requirement) 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

June 1, Culturally Responsive Health Care Conference, College of Public Health, 8:00 a.m.–1:00 pm.  Co-sponsored by the College of Dentistry. 

September 15-16, Dentistry Alumni Reunion Weekend

October 13-14, IMOM, Waterloo Convention Center, Sullivan Brothers Plaza, 200 W Fourth Street, Waterloo, IA.

Notes and Resources 

Filling Station Menu

M-R: 7:30 a.m.–4:00 p.m.; F: 7:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m.

The banner Hawkeye Smile image shows Shaoping Zhang, an assistant professor in periodontics, with Herky.

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