Loma Linda University Provost Ron Carter, PhD, welcomed students, faculty, relatives, friends and well-wishers to the School of Dentistry’s 2014 Student Dedication Service, Friday evening, February 7, at the LLU Church sanctuary.
Dr. Carter reminded his audience that “Loma Linda University School of Dentistry is a world leader among dental schools. It embodies mission focused learning,” he said, “the mission of continuing the healing ministry of Jesus Christ through education, research, and service symbolized this evening in the dedication of the Bible and the scientific symbol of the long white coats. LLU is known,” the provost added, “for its blending of faith and reason, and it is to that that we give our dedication and our spirit tonight.”
Following an invocation by Dean Ronald Dailey, PhD, musical praise was provided by a vocal ensemble of five School of Dentistry students: Michelle Goh, D2, Jeremy Haines, D4, Kyim Mung, D1, Mylene Reyes, DH2 (BS), and Cheiryl Pactanac, D1, as they performed Well Done by Moriah Peters.
In a brief address entitled, “The Aroma of Life,” Randy Roberts, DMin, senior pastor, LLU Church, meditated on life’s “watershed moments”—a baby’s birth, a graduation, a wedding. “This evening is a watershed moment,” he said, because “you come this evening … to receive not only the blessing of your school but of your God—that you might go from this place to do His bidding in the world.”
And “His bidding,” Pastor Roberts found in the second book of Corinthians, verses 14-16: “But thanks be to God, who … uses us to spread the … pleasing aroma of Christ … an aroma that brings life.” The pastor wondered what that might look like in the life of a dental or dental hygiene student. He found an answer in Micah 6:8: “You will have the opportunity to spread the aroma of life through your actions, if you are known for ‘acting justly’; if you are known for ‘loving mercy’; and if you are known for ‘walking humbly with your God.’”
A brief video was shown, named after the School’s motto, “Service Is Our Calling,” that summarized LLUSD service learning opportunities.
And then, at the calling of the names, first- and final-year dental hygiene, doctor of dentistry, and International Dentist Program students—332 altogether—took the stage individually to receive embossed Bibles (first year) and monogrammed white coats (graduating classes) courtesy of the School’s Alumni Association.
With all Bibles and coats dispersed, Iris Choi, DDS’10, assistant professor, Restorative Dentistry (and LLUSD’s new Alumni Association president), provided a prayer of dedication; and Scott Smith, DDS’09, assistant professor of Oral Diagnosis, Radiology and Pathology, led students and faculty in reciting The Dental Pledge.
School of Dentistry students Douglas Baasch, D4 (cello), Ruth Cho, DH2 (piano), Miranda Kore, D1 (trumpet), and Leanna Leight Ursales, D4 (violin), made up an instrumental ensemble that rendered Alan Hovahaness’ “Prayer of St. Gregory.”
At this February’s Dedication Service, the School of Dentistry continued its recent practice of giving engraved bibles to new faculty—eleven this year.