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Champions for Children

At the Whole Child Champion Award luncheon, held on August 20, the Childhood & Family Learning Foundation recognized faculty members in the LSUSD Program in Dental Hygiene. Deidre Brewer, RDH, MEd, clinical associate professor, and Caroline Mason, RDH, MEd, hygiene program director, received the award for contributions in support of the Whole Child, Whole School, Whole Community program, recently adopted by the 2015 state legislature. The luncheon celebrated the foundation's efforts to ensure that all children are free of health barriers to learning.

The Early Childhood & Family Learning Foundation is a New Orleans-based, not-for-profit organization working to improve opportunities for the city's children to succeed in school and life. The foundation, lead by Phyllis Landrieu, president and CEO, promotes the Coordinated Care for the Whole Children Program in Treme and Central City schools and day care centers. To identify students with health factors that prevent learning, a professional health team assesses children for vision, dental problems, hearing, blood pressure, obesity, immunizations, and other indicators. The team then establishes a treatment plan that is monitored for completion.

(l-r) Dental Hygiene faculty members Elaine Schwartz, Karen Oertling, Deidre Brewer, and Claudia Rivera

Partnering with the LSUHSC School of Nursing, dental hygiene students screened over 1,300 area schoolchildren during the 2014-15 school year. In addition, pediatric dentistry residents screened children for decay and sealant placements. Senior dental hygiene students returned to the schools with Ms. Brewer and Claudia Rivera, RDH, MDH, to place sealants and provide toothbrush prophylaxis and fluoride varnish as needed. The hygiene students and faculty members placed approximately 975 sealants in over 350 children. Elaine Schwartz, RDH, clinical assistant professor, and Karen Oertling, RDH, MPH, clinical assistant professor, were responsible for creating and facilitating the partnership with the nursing students.

At the recognition luncheon, Louisiana Health Secretary Kathy Kleibert and Education Superintendent John White were among numerous community and state-wide leaders honored as Whole Child Champions.


Dental Hygiene Joins White Coat Ceremony

A new tradition began this year when second-year dental hygiene students participated with second-year dental students in the White Coat Ceremony. During this event, which symbolizes the transition from classroom student to clinician, students pledge to exhibit personal and professional integrity as they work with patients. This year's ceremony, held on October 2, was the first time that dental hygiene students officially marked the transition along with dental students.

Dr. Trey Carlton, LSUSD '98, president of the Alumni Association, gave the keynote address. "The highest courage is daring to be yourself in the face of adversity," he said. "Choosing right over wrong, ethics over convenience, and truth over popularity...these are the choices that measure you in all aspects of your life."

Students received their white coats from Drs. John Gallo, Abdallah Awada, and Nicholas Miniotis and Ms. Carrie Mason, Heather Allen, and Tricia Barker. Class presidents, Matthew Henson, dental, and Alexandra Burns, dental hygiene, led the recitation of the professional oath.

(l-r) Corey Romero, D2 vice-president; Matt Henson, D2 president;
Dean Gremillion; Dr. Trey Carlton; Alexandra Burns, DH2 president; Carolyn Nguyen, DH2 vice-president


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Last Update 11/2015