The West Virginia University School of Dentistry Class of 2021, comprised of more than 70 students across three degree programs, represents tenacity. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, these students were among the first to return to providing patient care, in many instances, long before other dental schools and even private practices were able to reopen.
Temporary class and clinic closures, a hybrid of online and in-person classes, delayed certification examinations and postponed rural rotation assignments are some of the challenges they faced.
"Uncertainties were many - resuming clinical operations, lock-downs impacting our patients, and reverting to virtual teaching methods, yet you met each challenge brilliantly, making you ready for anything as you embark on the next stage of your careers," said Dr. Fotinos Panagakos, interim dean.
You can read his full remarks for students by clicking here.
While last year’s commencement ceremonies had to be cancelled, a number of factors from improved infection rates to vaccination distribution led to the University agreeing to outdoor commencement ceremonies with a number of social distancing and safety measures in place.
Dental hygiene, doctor of dental surgery and residents graduated at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 16, 2021. You can see some photos from commencement on our smugmug page.
Join us in congratulating these graduates:
Savannah Warnken (August 2021)
Dentistry – DDS
Elizabeth Strickler Higganbotham
Residents - MS
Dr. Stephanie Becker
Dr. Dustin Osborne
Dr. Minh Nguyen.
Caitlin Libby (August 2021)