With the publication of this third issue of the Beacon, I trust our alumni and friends are becoming familiar with our journal. I am hopeful that everyone awaits with pleasant anticipation the lighthouse cover as the symbol of your alumni association.
As I reflect on the humble beginning of our alma mater as Seton Hall Dental School, a part of the Seton Hall College of Medicine and Dentistry, I am amazed by the progress and transformation the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey has made.
In 1956, when the doors opened for students, there were only the dental school and Seton Hall Medical School. We were located at the rear of Jersey City Medical Center. Today, UMDNJ has eight schools, with its newest addition being the School of Public Health. It has become the largest freestanding health university in the nation and enjoys a national and international reputation. It is with great pride that each of us can say, "I am a graduate of New Jersey Dental School."
Our alumni association has grown concomitantly with the University. The Dental Alumni Association was formed in 1966, with Dr. Robert Forte ('60) its first president. With very little financial backing in the beginning, we were quite limited in what we could accomplish. Today, as you can see by our list of donors on p.30, we are raising substantial dollars, which allows us to be of greater assistance to the alumni, the students, and the school itself. The alumni association now sponsors a number of scholarships and research fellowships, along with providing emergency loans to students. Each May prior to graduation, we co-sponsor a student awards brunch, where leadership awards are presented to outstanding students. There are receptions for alumni at both the NJDA Convention and the Greater New York Dental Meeting. There are, of course, other things we do and other things we need to do. Just as the original College of Medicine and Dentistry was not complacent but has grown exponentially, the Dental Alumni Association cannot be complacent. Yes, we are doing better; yes, we have grownbut there is still so much more that we can and must do. Naturally, we need your help. Your help can be serving as class delegate, being a dues-paying alumnus or alumna and an annual fund contributor, or just offering your advice and opinions.
The Beacon is a concrete example of our maturation. This journal is YOUR journal. This association is YOUR association. Take it to heart. We need each other.
Arthur J. Crosta, D.M.D. ('67), Editor