On April 9, 2005, the SNDA chapter of the University of North Carolina School Of Dentistry (UNC-SOD) held their second Impressions Programs for the school year. This is the first time any SNDA chapter has hosted two Impressions Programs in one year. Damon Ross, UNC-SOD Impressions Program Chair and National SNDA President-Elect, aspired to set an example for other SNDA chapters across the United States by showing with the proper planning an Impressions Program can be easily executed. This program had 31 participants in attendance, representing 8 different universities. More than 80% of the participants were minorities and all expressed a strong interest in dentistry. The participation at UNC-SOD Impressions Programs in both the fall and spring was outstanding. Some students were a part of both programs and felt that each program was beneficial. The UNC-SOD SNDA chapter hopes this type of student turnout will encourage other SNDA chapters to host at least one Impressions Program per school year. The minority undergraduate interest is plentiful and it would greatly benefit these students to see other SNDA chapters welcoming them to their institutions the way UNC-SOD has welcomed so many students over the years.
The program began with a welcome and a brief overview of the Undergraduate Student National Dental Association (USNDA). During this welcome we also discussed the 1 st Annual USNDA Conference which will be held in Las Vegas this summer. Following the welcome session, the students participated in two hours of Dental Admissions Test (DAT) preparatory courses, taught by Haeman Noori, a third year dental student at UNC-SOD. Mr. Noori provided the students with test taking tips for the organic chemistry and perceptual ability sections of the DAT.
Dr. Eugene Sandler, Clinical Associate Professor at UNC-SOD, then spoke about the different DISC Rotations available to UNC dental students. Following lunch, participants were given the opportunity to listen to the motivational and inspirational words of Dr. Robin Daniel (National Dental Association Vice-President). Dr. Daniel Spoke about setting goals for the future and never giving up until you reach them. Participants were then divided into groups and participated in mock interviews and a hands-on session of dentistry. The mock interviews consisted of a group of four students and two interviewers. The interviewers for the program were Dr. Richard Beane, Dr. Gustav Horsey, Dr. Janet Southerland, Dr. Santa Maria McKibbins, Dr. David Foulkes, Dr. Eric Davis, Dr. Robin Daniel, and Dr. Spencer Howard. Each student was asked at least one question, given five minutes to answer, and then received faculty feedback. The hands-on dentistry session consisted of students having the opportunity to prepare a central incisor and a molar, both of which were mounted in a stone cast. It was amazing to see how well undergraduate students could prepare class II and class III operative dentistry preparations!
The spring UNC-SOD Impressions Program was definitely a success, a history maker, and now an annual event for our organization’s calendar. Our SNDA chapter would like to say a special thanks to all of those who supported the program and we hope to hear similar feedback from other SNDA chapters’ Impressions Programs in the near future.