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Asian-American Dental Society

A number of Asian-American Dental Society events like this one, the Aug. 17 ADS Annual Welcoming Barbeque, also include non-members.

Photo by Steven Doll

ADS builds upon spirit of inclusion with semester’s first lunch and learn

Like years past, the Asian-American Dental Society started the fall semester with an array of activities.

The Aug. 17 ADS Annual Welcoming Barbecue Dinner drew its usual large crowd, which exceeded 200 people. An Aug. 31 lunch and learn by Oral-B boasted a crowd more than 200 strong. Beasley Auditorium — which has the capacity to seat 300 people — was nearly three-fourths full.

This year the lunch-and-learn event’s staggering turnout may be the result of a new ADS initiative: inviting faculty, residents and clinical staff to an event traditionally reserved just for D1s since its inception five years ago.

“The ADS really wanted to invite faculty, residents and clinical staff to the Oral-B lunch and learn because we feel like it is beneficial not only for students but also for the rest of the school,” says D2 Charlene Garcia, who is president of the college’s ADS chapter. “We wanted to give everyone the opportunity to hear Oral-B's presentation and not have it exclusively for first-years.”

The invitation was well received, with a sizable turnout of faculty, residents and clinical staff.

The concept of including non-members from Texas A&M Health Science Center Baylor College of Dentistry is nothing new to ADS. The organization’s culturally diverse membership of 232 students also offers DH1s and dental hygiene instructors a warm welcome at the barbecue dinner.

“Dental hygiene students are an important part of TAMHSC-BCD,” says Dr. Loulou Moore, associate professor in restorative sciences, the ADS adviser since 1998. “We always appreciate their participation in our Biannual Free Sealant and Prophy Days.”

This attitude of inclusion may continue through at least part of the semester, including a Sonicare lunch and learn this fall.

“We hope to open it up to faculty, residents and clinical staff,” Garcia said the week after the Oral-B presentation.

The organization may stand to gain a larger number of student members as a result of its welcoming attitude at the beginning of each academic year.

“We hope that non-members will gain interest in joining ADS since we are an organization with fun and informative events like the Oral-B presentation,” says Garcia. “We want to encourage students to join our organization, and we want them to feel like they are getting something special out of becoming a member.”