A Political Perspective

How do dentistry and politics intersect? The Pacific Dugoni Chapter of the Academy of General Dentistry recently invited alumnus Dr. Joel Strom ’79 to speak with the Pacific Dugoni dental community on how dentists have an opportunity to enhance their career through political involvement. Dr. Strom is a former California State Dental board president and president of Strom Political Strategies. After graduating from University of the Pacific’s School of Dentistry in 1979, he completed a National Institute of Health Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Human Nutrition at Columbia University. In addition to practicing general dentistry in the greater Los Angeles area, he has served as course director for ethics at USC’s School of Dentistry and as president of the Western Los Angeles Dental Society. Dr. Strom also founded Dentistry United for WWII Vets.

AGD Political Perspective photo

During his visit, Dr. Strom discussed points of intersection between dentistry and politics, and explained how he got involved in political issues while just starting out in his career. Issues such as malpractice rates, changes in healthcare laws, student loans and taxes all affect the lives of dental professionals. Dentists have specialized knowledge about the healthcare industry that puts them in the prime position to make a difference in their community by taking leadership roles at all levels of politics – including professional dental organizations.

At Pacific Dugoni, students are constantly challenged to engage with their communities to be forces of positive change. Our clubs and organizations offer events that give students an opportunity to learn from seasoned professionals as they share perspectives on different ways dentists can use their talents in society. Many thanks, Dr. Strom, for sparking conversation on these timely topics at our school!

ASDA Chapter’s Penny Wars Supports City Youth Now

ASDA Penny Wars 2014 photo 3

Dollar bills are negative points. Do we smell sabotage?

There’s only one week a year when a penny is worth more than a nickel, dime, dollar or Benjamin. During Pacific Dugoni’s ASDA Chapter Penny Wars fundraiser, students, faculty and staff competed against each other as they collected pennies to rack up points while “nickel-and-diming” opposing teams to inflict negative points. The winning team was determined by the greatest number of (positive) points. But having the most pennies doesn’t necessarily lead to victory, as a $20 bill in an opponents’ jar can wreak havoc in the final hour.

This year the faculty and staff took first place with 33,061 points. A total of $2,216.43 was raised through the Penny Wars fundraiser, and all donations will go directly to City Youth Now.

ASDA Penny Wars 2014

City Youth Now is a San Francisco-based nonprofit organization that supports youth in foster care and juvenile justice systems by providing funds for services and programs that promote stability and personal growth.

“Penny Wars was a great event that displayed one of the core values of Pacific Dugoni: philanthropy,” said Jeong Yun, ASDA community outreach coordinator. “Everyone’s willingness to contribute reminded us that we are truly a family. On another note, we will make sure to ‘nickel and dime’ the faculty and staff next year!”

Pacific Dugoni’s chapter of the American Student Dental Association (ASDA) provides opportunities in dental education, advocacy and community service. All Pacific Dugoni students become members of ASDA and have an opportunity to participate in chapter activities. Learn more about ASDA’s activities here: https://www.facebook.com/PacificASDA