In November 2018, Kate Thieda, MS, LCMHC, NCC, joined the UNC-CH School of Dentistry’s Office of Academic Affairs as the director of student wellness. She will lead the development of strategies to create a healthy and balanced environment for students at the UNC-CH School of Dentistry.
“As only the second director of student wellness among the UNC-Chapel Hill’s professional schools, Kate is a welcome addition to our team and will be a great resource for our students,” said Vice Dean for Education, Ed Swift, DMD. “In addition to the incredible range of expertise, experience, and interprofessional skills she brings to the school, the creation of Kate’s new position reflects the School of Dentistry’s renewed commitment to student wellness.”
Thieda will play a critical role in helping students develop lifelong skills to achieve and maintain optimal overall health, including promoting ways to prevent student burnout and establishing programs and policies to enhance physical and mental wellness.
“I am thrilled to have joined the School of Dentistry in this new role and look forward to working with all students to create an environment that supports all the dimensions of wellness, including physical, mental, environmental, and spiritual wellness,” said Thieda. “Individual wellness coaching is available to all students at this time, and additional programming, including pop-up ‘awareness days,’ mental health first aid training, and ‘toolkit sessions’ that focus on specific wellness topics will be forthcoming.”
She will work jointly with Vice Dean for Education, Ed Swift, DMD; Associate Dean for Advanced Dental Education, Ceib Phillips, MPH, PhD; Associate Dean of Admissions, Mary Pettiette, DDS; and Directors for Student Success, Sumi Ahmed, BDS, MS, and Jonathan Reside, DDS, MS.
Thieda most recently served in a similar capacity for graduate medical interns, residents and fellows in Duke University Hospital’s Personal Assistance Service. She earned her master’s degree in counseling from the UNC-Greensboro. She is a licensed professional counselor and a board-certified National Certified Counselor.