Faculty and Staff, Outreach, Students

Student National Dental Association Raises $11,600 for Oral Cancer Research

The UNC-CH Adams School of Dentistry’s Student National Dental Association (SNDA) chapter hosted their second Oral Cancer 5K/Walk and Community Health Fair on March 30, 2019. More than 70 volunteers from the Adams School of Dentistry, Eshelman School of Pharmacy, School of Medicine, Alliance of AIDS Services Carolina and the UNC-CH Rehabilitation Counseling Association helped organize and run the event. 

This year’s event had special meaning for the UNC-CH Adams School of Dentistry community – in honor of a faculty member who is currently battling tonsillar cancer, all proceeds from the event would be donated to the Lineberger Comprehensive Care Center.  

After a matching gift, more than $11,600 was donated to the Lineberger Head and Neck Cancer Program for patient housing and travel.  

“One person dies every hour from oropharyngeal cancer and the survival rate of this horrible disease has not changed significantly in over 30 years because of late diagnoses,” said Katharine Ciarrocca, DMD, MSEd, director of interprofessional education at the Adams School of Dentistry. “Together with the School of Medicine and the Eshelman School of Pharmacy, we hoped to raise awareness and teach prevention through this event, as well as provide a valuable educational experience for our students.”  

The community health fair was free and open to the public. Volunteers provided free oral cancer screenings, blood pressure and glucose readings, and medication reviews to nearly 150 participants.   

The event was generously sponsored by Richmond Dental and Medical, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates, Delta Dental of North Carolina, Triangle Restoration Dentistry, Linda’s Bar and Grill, Venture Insurance Group, Morgan at Chapel Hill Apartments, and O2 Fitness Club.