Editing staff and publisher



Around Campus: Volume 3

'98 Balbo Expo: Something for Everyone

"A teacher affects eternity," wrote historian Henry Brooks Adams. "He can never tell where his influence stops." One educator's influence was evident at NJDS on April 1, when the Dr. Michael Balbo Dental Sciences Expo carried on its tradition of learning.

The all-day event included a continuing dental education (CDE) course and the "On Beyond Graduation" workshop for the Class of 1999. As in previous Expos, the afternoon session featured student and faculty research presentations and exhibits by dental product manufacturers. And, for the first time, faculty and staff development sessions were part of the program.

The Expo literally had something for everyone. This year's CDE program, "Contemporary Esthetic Dentistry," was attended by 120 private practitioners (67 of whom were NJDS alumni); 58 members of the Class of '98; and eight exhibitors. During the day, 40 faculty chose from three programs planned by the Faculty Development Committee and the Expo Organizing Committee: "Problem Based Learning," presented by Dr. Patrick Quaranta (D'72), associate professor of clinical Oral Pathology, Biology and Diagnostic Sciences; "Instruction in Dental Simulators," presented by Dr. Phillip Feil of the Kansas City School of Dentistry; and "The Secret World of Appointments and Promotions," presented by Dr. Carmine LoMonaco ('64), professor of Endodontics and director of emergency dental care service. Meanwhile, NJDS staff seminars included "The World Wide Web­How Does it Work?" presented by Dr. Richard Montgomery, associate professor of OPBDS, and "Attitudes and Professionalism in the Workplace," presented by Ms. Judith Lannin of J.P. Morgan and Co.

The "On Beyond Graduation" program for the Class of 1999 included presentations by many of the local residency program directors. NJDS departments also participated, as well as the armed forces, with lunch provided by the U.S. Air Force.

The Expo's presentation segment drew participation from 14 dental students, 30 dental hygiene students, seven faculty, staff, and post-grads, and 31 exhibitors.

Winners of the student presentation program were:

First Place­Mr. Chris Arena, Class of 2001: "The Role of Metals in Bone Cell Protease Production." He won a trip to the 1998 American Dental Association annual meeting to compete in the National Caulk Dentsply Student Clinician Program.

Second Place­Ms. Jennifer Reyes and Mr. Brad Elkin, Class of 2000: "Comparing Patient Motives and Perceptions Regarding Orthodontic Care." They each received a $200 prize provided by the Dental Alumni Association.

Third Place­Ms. Kristine Nguyen and Mr. Kenneth James, Class of 2000: "Implementation of Preventative Therapy in an Undergraduate Comprehensive Care Clinic." A $100 prize was provided by the Office of the Dean, NJDS.

Judges for the competition were Dr. Jeffrey Linfante ('90), clinical assistant professor of General and Hospital Dentistry; Dr. Rita Mehra, professor of clinical Prosthodontics and Biomaterials; and Dr. Chinnaswamy Kasinathan, associate professor of OPBDS.

Editor's Note: Dr. Panagakos was coordinator for the Dental Expo. The program's working group included Dr. Kim Fenesy ('86); Dr. Linfante; Dr. Zia Shey ('73), associate dean for Student Affairs and Graduate Dental Education; Dr. Louisa Vilensky-Sanders ('82); Ms. Susan Hill; Ms. Charlotte Adams; Ms. Jane Verillo; and Ms. Regina Jackson. The administrative coordinator for the program was Ms. Carolyn Booker-Willard.


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Alumni Award Scholarship Winners

Words of appreciation to the Dental Alumni Association:

Fabio Apolito ('99)
Dental Alumni Scholarship

The only words I can say to express my gratitude are "thank you." Thank you so much for bestowing upon me the honor of your scholarship award. I will continue to strive forward in dentistry and am indebted to the Dental Alumni Association for this honor.

John Panzarino ('00)
Dental Alumni ScholarshipAlphonse & Mary Mercantini Scholarship

Thank you for awarding me The Dental Alumni Scholarship and The Alphonse and Mary Mercantini Scholarship. I am honored to have been chosen, and I appreciate the advantage the awards will afford me in pursuing my academic goals.

I would also like to thank the Dental Alumni Association as a whole for their continuous and generous support of New Jersey Dental School. The efforts of the association enrich the lives and experiences of the students as well as the dental program.

Maura Conniff ('99)
Dental Alumni Scholarship & the R.L. Garner Scholarship

It is with heartfelt thanks that I compose this letter. I appreciate The Dental Alumni Scholarship you have granted me in recognition of my accomplishments thus far at New Jersey Dental School. I look forward to becoming an active member of the association so that I may have some part in bestowing this honor upon another deserving candidate.

Suzanne K. Bunn ('00)
Dental Alumni Scholarship

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Dental Alumni Association for awarding me a partial-tuition scholarship. To be selected for any award at dental school, considering the caliber of my colleagues, is very rewarding. Beyond the satisfaction at receiving the award, I am grateful for the financial assistance the gift provides.

Please do not hesitate to ask if there is any service I could provide for you in the future, as I would welcome the opportunity to show my gratitude for the support the Dental Alumni Association has given me.

Kimberly Perkins ('00)
Dental Alumni Scholarship

Thank you for the generous scholarship. The money will greatly aid in reducing my indebtedness while in dental school along with theaccompanying financial stresses.

Mariam Vaziri ('99)
Dental Alumni Scholarship

I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for this award. I am greatly honored and overjoyed to receive it. This award is greatly needed and will be put to good use. Thank you for helping me pursue my dental education!

Leadership Awards

Kevin Lake ('98)
Christopher Perry ('99)
Sharon Gaylord ('00)
Jennifer Christopher ('01)
George J. Schmidt, Jr. ('98),
SGA President
Student Excellence Award
Nooreen Ali ('98)
Dr. Michael Balbo Memorial Scholarship
Robert Laski ('98)
Balbo Expo Table Clinic Runners-up
Jennifer Reyes ('00)
Brad Elkin ('00)


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Senior Brunch

Many students received honors at the Student Awards Brunch held this May at the Parsippany Hilton Hotel. Dr. Zia Shey ('73), associate dean for Student Affairs and Graduate Dental Education, again hosted the ceremony, which was co-sponsored by the Dental Alumni Association and the Dean's Office. Dean Robert Saporito presented the awards. The brunch was well attended by students, their family members and NJDS alumni, to honor the award winners and the entire graduating class.

An Evening of Firsts at OKU Awards Dinner

by Kim E. Fenesy, D.M.D. '86, Omega Omega Chapter President

Each May, the Omega Omega Chapter of Omicron Kappa Upsilon (OKU), the National Dental Honor Society,celebrates the accomplishments of new inductees, award winners, and those who have served the society. But this year's awards dinner also highlighted some key firsts: presentation of the chapter's inaugural scholarship and recognition of the winner of a new OKU national teaching award.

Even the honored guests reflected an Omega Omega Chapter first. The three major sponsors of last year's premiere OKU Scholarship Golf Classic attended the fete: Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Cargulia of AC Dental, Dr. and Mrs. Michael Alfano ('71), then of the Block Drug Company, Inc., and Dr. and Mrs. Anthony Volpe ('60) of Colgate-Palmolive Company.

Since the first NJDS class graduated in 1960, 272 students have been elected to OKU alumni membership by the Omega Omega Chapter. Dr. Arnold H. Rosenheck, immediate past chairman of the UMDNJ-Board of Trustees, honorary member of Omega Omega Chapter, and the evening's keynote speaker, congratulated this year's new alumni members from the Class of 1998:

These alumni have received numerous awards and honors, beginning in college and continuing throughout their four years at NJDS. Among them are Phi Beta Kappa members, Garden State Scholars, Champion Scholars, and Edward J. Bloustein Distinguished Scholars.

Scott Galkin, Class of 1999 is the first recipient of the Omega Omega Chapter Scholarship Award and winner of the Dr. William S. Kramer Award for Excellence. The latter award recognizes a rising junior dental student at a component chapter dental school who has demonstrated scholarship, character, and the potential promise for advancement of dentistry and service to humanity as shown by Dr. William S. Kramer.

Mr. Galkin graduated summa cum laude from Rutgers University's Cook College in 1995 and received the college's Outstanding Male Senior Award for leadership and academics. As an undergraduate, he attained the Dean's list every semester of all four years and was named the Edward J. Bloustein Distinguished Scholar through the N. J. Department of Higher Education. Upon his acceptance to NJDS, Mr. Galkin was awarded a full four-year UMDNJ academic scholarship. This past school year, he attained the highest grade point average in the junior class.

Dr. Patrick Quaranta (D'72) and Dean Robert Saporito were elected to faculty membership in OKU based on their outstanding contributions to the art, science, or literature of dentistry, as well as demonstrating a keen sense of ethics and professionalism.

Dr. Quaranta has been a faculty member since 1973 and in 1992 was promoted to associate professor of clinical Oral Pathology, Biology and Diagnostic Sciences. He is the course director of numerous predoctoral courses, which are consistently rated among the dental school's top classes by the students. Dr. Quaranta is recognized nationally for his expertise in the Problem Based Learning teaching methodology.

Dr. Quaranta has demonstrated excellence both as a teacher and as a pupil. He was chosen twice by students to receive the Foundation of UMDNJ's Excellence in Teaching Award. He recently received a master's degree in psychology from Kean University's Graduate School of Psychology and was inducted into Psi Chi, the National Honor Society of psychology, in recognition of academic excellence.

Dean Saporito's distinguished dental career also was recognized at the dinner. In 1982, Dr. Saporito joined NJDS as a clinical professor, and from the start, he has been committed to the betterment of dentistry, dental education, and NJDS students. Dr. Saporito has been course director of many predoctoral courses, and most notably on the postdoctoral level in prosthodontics, including the occlusion core curriculum. In the past five years, he has attracted more than $1 million in grants as the principal and co-principal investigator.

In 1996, Dr. Saporito was awarded the Presidential Service Award for research and community service from the New Jersey Dental Association. Most recently, he was co-recipient of the Pew Health Professions Commission's 1997 Primary Care Achievement Award in Patient Care.

Dr. Paul J. Desjardins was formally acknowledged as the first national recipient of the newly created Dr. Stephen H. Leeper Award for Teaching Excellence, which was presented to him by the Supreme Chapter of OKU at its annual meeting this past March.

Dr. Kathleen Hargaden '91 was recognized with an award in appreciation of her service as the Secretary-Treasurer of Omega Omega Chapter from 1994-1996.

Dr. James Delahanty '75 the current Secretary-Treasurer, received an award for hisdedication and commitment to OKU and the students of NJDS. Dr. Delahanty established the OKU Scholarship Golf Classic and perpetual student scholarship fund, from which the first Omicron Kappa Upsilon-Omega Omega Chapter Scholarship was awarded this year.

Others honored at the awards:

Michele Bergen-Shapiro
Robert Laski
Gabrielle Lobato
Ruth E. Parkin
Craig A. Rothenberg
Torin W. Rutner
George J. Schmidt, Jr.
Michael Vandenberg

OKU officers join award recipients at last May's OKU Awards Dinner: Back Row (left to right): Dr. James Delahanty-Secretary-Treasurer of OKU, Scott Galkin, Craig Rothenberg, George Schmidt, Jr., Torin Rutner, Robert Laski, Michael Vandenberg, Dr. Gary Vitaletti-President-Elect of OKU. Front Row (left to right): Dr. Kim Fenesy-President of OKU, Michele Bergen-Shapiro, Ruth Parkin, Gabrielle Lobato.

Scholarship, Character, and More

What does it take to become an OKU member? Omega Omega Chapter President Dr. Kim Fenesy ('86) explains: "Admission and membership is limited to those students who have distinguished themselves by a high grade of scholarship, have demonstrated exemplary traits of character, and who have shown potential qualities for future growth and attainments. The active members of Omega Omega Chapter may not elect more than 12% of the entire graduating class to alumni membership in OKU."


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1998 Scholarship Golf Classic

Hosted by:
Omega Omega Chapter of Omicron Kappa Upsilon (OKU)
Princeton Golf & Country Club in Plainsboro, N.J.


  • More than $25,000 was raised in scholarship money
  • The winner: Mr. Steve Tetz of Lawrenceville, N.J., with an 8 over par 78.
  • AC Dental Lab and the Block Drug Company again sponsored the event.
  • The Classic was attended by more than 100 golfers.

Hygiene High Jinks on the Hudson

by Jim Delahanty, DMD ('75)

Fightin' fluoride, oral health fans! As part of last February's Happy Tooth Carnival, NJDS alumni, students, faculty, and staff teamed with super hero Captain Fluoride to give the brush to that force of dental evil, the dastardly, diabolical Doctor D.K. The carnival, held at Jersey City's Liberty Science Center, saw more than 3,000 children participate in interactive exhibits that taught them how to care for their teeth and the importance of good oral health.

The hands-on program, sponsored by the Colgate-Palmolive Company in conjunction with the Hudson County Dental Society, included:

In keeping with the theme, several carnival-type skill games (such as a bean bag toss and knock down the milk bottles) enabled the children to win prizes.

"It was difficult to tell who was having more fun­the kids or the volunteers," says Dr. Bessie Fouces ('86), president of the Hudson County Dental Society. "Together, our dental colleagues and NJDS made strides in reaching out to the community for the good of children's dental health awareness."

  • A "U-Be-The-Dentist" exhibit that allowed children to dress up as dental professionals and examine a manikin "patient" for dental caries.
  • A demonstration of alginate impressions and dental plaster (used to make reproductions of children's thumbs).
  • Oral hygiene demonstrations.
  • Demonstrations of dental materials, which children used to create tooth sculptures.
  • Nutrition information and interactive games to demonstrate the importance of diet in oral health. Coloring books and healthy snacks were given to the children.
  • An oral health poster competition for elementary, middle, and high school students. Colgate awarded savings bonds to children in different age categories.


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Student's Notebook

It is my pleasure to address you as the new President of the Student Government Association at New Jersey Dental School. I would like to inform you of some of the many exciting happenings here at the school and to offer a student's perspective on their results.

Change has enveloped the dental school and taken many forms, from the classroom to the clinic to the student body and our relationship with organized dentistry. The greatest of these metamorphoses has been the development of Curriculum 2000, a bold and extensive initiative led by Dr. Fotinos Panagakos ('92) and Dr. Paul Desjardins that has affected us in numerous ways. One of the most significant results, from the student's point of view, has been the shift toward an evidence-based vision of dental diagnosis and treatment. We are taught to rely no longer on the individual clinician's experience, but rather, to base decisions on sound scientific evidence. Integral to this aspect of our education has been the use of case-based learning sessions, where we are exposed to a range of patients with difficult dental and medical conditions.

The clinical phase of education at NJDS has undergone a tremendous shift toward a competency-based format. While the clinical curriculum is still point- and unit-based (how could we ever get rid of points?), the emphasis is on attaining a certain level of competency with the clinical criteria of the specific competencies based on the requirements of the North East Regional Board (NERB) exams.

What has been most gratifying about these developments has been student involvement at every level. The curriculum committee established to develop Curriculum 2000 included several students, whose opinions were actively sought. However, try as they might, there have been numerous glitches in the system, and the implementation has been complicated and, at times, frustrating to the students. Thus, the ability to offer feedback to the administration has been very useful.

A new sense of cooperation seems to have overtaken the student body as well. For several years we have had a mentoring program, Foresight, for incoming freshmen. All first-year students are assigned sophomore volunteer mentors who help them acclimate to dental school and to Newark (everybody's got to learn the way to Don Pepe's). Also, a guidebook provides the incoming freshmen with a variety of information ranging from classes and professors to housing and local restaurants.

The concept of the Foresight program and handbook have extended to later years. The junior class has put together a guidebook for the sophomore year (widely viewed as the most demanding academic year) that will have its first edition distributed this fall. The Class of '99 is, in turn, implementing a new program, Hindsight, in which senior mentors will help facilitate the juniors' entrance into the clinic. As I'm sure you remember, the first few months of patient contact are nerve-wracking enough, but the added pressure of paperwork and requirements (as well as those dreaded new competencies) merely add to the pressure. The seniors will distribute a new manual full of students' hints for clinic success and meet weekly with the juniors to answer questions. All of this adds up to a great feeling of camaraderie and cooperation among all of the classes.

One of the most exciting developments is an initiative, led by Dr. Carmine LoMonaco ('64) and a student committee, for the creation of a UMDNJ chapter of the New Jersey Dental Association (NJDA). Students have been meeting with the lead legal counsel of the NJDA, Mr. Arthur Meisel, to develop a chapter constitution in preparation for a vote by the NJDA House of Delegates on whether to grant UMDNJ its own chapter. If passed, this would allow UMDNJ students access to organized dentistry and enable them to join one of the dozen or so councils of the NJDA.

As you can see, there is much happening at NJDS. This is truly an exciting time, and we welcome your visit to the school.


Christopher J. Perry

NJDS Student Government President


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