A.T. Still University’s Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ATSU-MOSDOH) hosted its third commencement ceremony on May 17, 2019, in Kirksville, Missouri. The ceremony honored 42 graduates with 15 men and 27 women receiving their doctor of dental medicine degree in Baldwin Hall Auditorium at Truman State University. Among the graduates, eight received their master of public health degree, and two were commissioned into the military forces. Nine of the graduates are Missouri residents.
“We are proud of the accomplishments of the class of 2019, and we wish our graduates a thriving professional career,” said ATSU-MOSDOH dean Dwight E. McLeod, DDS, MS. “We are excited that a significant number of graduates will reside in Missouri and fulfill our mission by providing access to oral healthcare for underserved populations in various parts of the state.”
Donald M. Suggs, DDS, served as the dental school’s commencement speaker. Dr. Suggs, a retired oral surgeon from St. Louis, Missouri, is also majority shareholder of the award-winning St. Louis American newspaper, the largest African American newspaper in the nation. He spoke to graduates about being true to themselves, challenging themselves, and being willing to take risks when something matters.
The class of 2019 performed more than 2,000 hours of service for dentistry in the community, attended at least 25 community events per year, and served more than 10,000 underserved individuals. The class also participated in two international dental missions and six dental missions within the state of Missouri. Over the last year, the class increased access to oral healthcare by logging 19,200 hours in 32 external community health centers in six states. Additionally, the class members achieved a 100 percent first-time pass rate on the Western Regional Examining Board examinations.