Alumni Day 2009:  Auditorium Dedication

The breezeway was packed and the big auditorium was full as an excited crowd estimated at 350 converged on the LSU School of Dentistry for a full day of Alumni Day activities. These included continuing education courses provided pro bono by The Dawson Academy and the dedication of a $3.2 million renovation to Auditoriums A and B.

History was made when the school's first-ever Distinguished Faculty Award was presented to Dr. Shawky Mohamed, beloved teacher for the past 31 years in the Department of Prosthodontics.

In honor of decades of loyal support, the Outstanding Alumna of the Year award was given to Dr. Virginia Angelico-Tatum ('79).

"Our message to the world is that we are going forward," Dean Henry Gremillion ('77) told the crowd at the auditorium dedication. "Today we can feel the energy of getting things done."

The auditoriums are used daily as classrooms incorporate the latest in technology. Starting in 2010, the rooms will also be used for continuing education courses, with the capacity to link to locations in other Louisiana cities. Since 1969, more than 900 LSUSD continuing education courses have attracted more than 50,000 attendees.

The completed auditoriums are the first step in a multi-year rebuilding of the dental school. Dr. Gremillion, who became dean just one year ago, shared plans for the total renovation of the wet labs and preclinical labs. "We have to face the reality that most of the teaching labs and classrooms have not been renovated since the 1970 and are outdated. Going forward means upgrading our infrastructure."

If humor is the best medicine, then it could be said that the live auction conducted by fourth-year students Ben Foster and Chris Feldman was balm for the soul. The two had the audience laughing non-stop while successfully raising $6,000 to benefit the LSUSD Alumni Association.

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Last Update 10/2009