Diversity Belief and Commitment

Diversity Belief and Commitment

The University of Iowa College of Dentistry is committed to a welcoming and inclusive collegiate community for all students, faculty, staff and patients.

Diversity allows us to embrace the unique qualities of an individual; enhances the educational environment for our future dental practitioners; and provides the foundation on which we can better serve our patients with cultural sensitivity and competence.

The College of Dentistry is committed to the university’s core values of: diversity, equity, and inclusion; student success; research and discovery; and engagement. This is reflected in the college’s strategic plan.

DEI Office

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Office at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics is responsible for cultivating and championing a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for faculty, staff, students, residents, and patients.

The Letter D

Diversity

Diversity refers to all aspects of human difference, social identities, and social group differences. This includes, but is not limited to: race, ethnicity, creed, color, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual identity, socio-economic status, language, culture, national origin, religion/spirituality, age, (dis)ability, military/veteran status, political perspective, and associational preferences. 

The Letter E

Equity

Equity refers to fair and just practices and policies that ensure all campus community members can thrive. Being equitable means acknowledging and addressing structural inequalities—historic and currentthat advantage some and disadvantage others. Equal treatment results in equity only if everyone starts with equal access to opportunities.

The Letter I

Inclusion

Inclusion refers to a campus community where all members are and feel respected, have a sense of belonging, and are able to participate and achieve to their potential. While diversity is essential, it is not sufficient. An institution can be both diverse and non-inclusive at the same time, thus a sustained practice of creating inclusive environments is necessary for success.

Iowa: A Framework for Life and Service

Hayley Harvey ('94 DDS, '96 MS)

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DEI News

Azeez Butali

Iowa dental researcher receives supplemental NIH award

Thursday, September 15, 2022
Building on his February 2020 NIH grant, Azeez Butali, professor in the Department of Oral Pathology, Radiology, and Medicine, was awarded a $133,526 supplemental award to identify the mental health challenges among African mothers and their children affected by orofacial clefts.
SHPEP Class of 2022

Dental students give back to summer educational program

Thursday, June 30, 2022
The dental track of the Summer Health Professions Education Program showcases careers in dentistry for undergraduate students from underrepresented backgrounds. Since 2017, this highly competitive program has served over 100 students helping to prepare them for dental school and a future career in dentistry. Jonelle Joseph and Hannah Malloy are two graduates of this unique and immersive educational experience, and both have helped with the program over the last two summers.
Megha Puranam delivering the keynote address

Megha Puranam's Keynote Address

Thursday, May 19, 2022
The Center for Inclusive Excellence at the University of Iowa held its annual graduation reception on May 11. At this reception, fourth-year dental student Megha Puranam delivered the keynote address at the graduation reception.
Fireworks over the Old Capitol

Two fourth-year dental students recognized for efforts to promote inclusive education

Thursday, May 19, 2022
Fourth-year dental students Chichi Adeleke and Megha Puranam both received awards at the Center for Inclusive Academic Excellence Graduation Reception. Adeleke received the Dean's Achievement Award, and Puranam received the Student Leadership Award. Puranam also delivered the keynote address at the reception.
A UI REACH student smiling with her provider

College of Dentistry Hosts Event for UI REACH Students

Wednesday, April 27, 2022
On April 7 and 14, students from the UI REACH program learned about oral health and received one-on-one tooth brushing instructions from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry.
Ariene Leme-Kraus and Eric Teixeira

Iowa Dentistry Faculty Receive Industry Grant for Restorative Dental Materials Research

Thursday, March 31, 2022
A German Pharmaceutical company awarded Ariene Leme-Kraus and Erica Teixeira a $10,000 grant for their project investigating the effectiveness of a newly developed glass-ionomer dental material. In particular, the project will evaluate whether this novel dental material can effectively be used to treat root tooth decay.
Three women dental students examining an x-ray

UI Impacting Future of Women in Dentistry Since 1887

Wednesday, March 23, 2022
Written by: Emily Nelson
Starting with our first female graduate, Jessie Ritchey, in 1887 and continuing to this day, Iowa has proven itself a trailblazer for women in dentistry. The Class of 2024 is the first in the University of Iowa College of Dentistry’s history to have more female students than male students—helping move the national dentistry workforce closer to gender parity.
Patient receiving care in the Geriatric and Special Needs clinic

University of Iowa College of Dentistry Receives Prestigious Gies Award for Achievement

Wednesday, March 23, 2022
During the 2022 ADEA Annual Session on March 21, the ADEAGies Foundation presented the University of Iowa with a 2022 William J. Gies Award for Achievement for Academic Dental Institutions. This award recognizes Iowa’s cutting-edge Geriatric and Special Needs Program, led by director Howard Cowen, the Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation Professor in Geriatrics and Special Needs.
Azeez Butali

The Genetics of Cleft Lip and Palate for the Zulu Population in South Africa

Thursday, February 10, 2022
The nonprofit organization, Smile Train, awarded Iowa professor Azeez Butali a $40,000 grant to study the genetic causes of cleft lip and palate among the Zulu population in South Africa. Butali is an internationally recognized expert in the genetics of cleft lip and palate, particularly among African populations. Butali is working with Thriona Naicker, a trained Medical Geneticist and PhD student at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Butali serves as Naicker’s mentor for his dissertation research.
Rosalie Reddick Miller and Rufus P. Beshears

Iowa Trailblazers: The First Black Graduates of the College of Dentistry

Thursday, February 3, 2022
Rufus P. Beshears (1909) and Rosalie Reddick Miller (1958) were two of the first Black graduates of the College of Dentistry. Black history month at the College of Dentistry is an opportunity for us to look at our past, celebrate the accomplishments of our esteemed alumni, and drive us to become a more inclusive community for our students, alumni, staff, and faculty.

Dental DEI Events

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University DEI Events

BUILD: Exploring the Influence of Implicit Bias promotional image

BUILD: Exploring the Influence of Implicit Bias

Tuesday, January 31, 2023 1:00pm to 4:00pm
Virtual
The Building University of Iowa Leadership for Diversity (BUILD) initiative is an opportunity for UI faculty, staff, post-docs, and graduate students to gain strategic knowledge and skills to contribute to a welcoming and inclusive environment for all. By completing a series of workshops, participants will earn a certificate demonstrating their commitment as leaders to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and classroom. To get session details and register for UI campus courses, log...
BUILD: Tips with Leading DEI-Related Discussions promotional image

BUILD: Tips with Leading DEI-Related Discussions

Wednesday, February 1, 2023 9:00am to 12:00pm
University Capitol Centre
The Building University of Iowa Leadership for Diversity (BUILD) initiative is an opportunity for UI faculty, staff, post-docs, and graduate students to gain strategic knowledge and skills to contribute to a welcoming and inclusive environment for all. By completing a series of workshops, participants will earn a certificate demonstrating their commitment as leaders to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and classroom. To get session details and register for UI campus courses, log...
Life in Iowa and ISSE Weekly Coffee Hour promotional image

Life in Iowa and ISSE Weekly Coffee Hour

Wednesday, February 1, 2023 3:30pm to 4:30pm
University Capitol Centre
Starting Jan. 18, Life in Iowa (part of International Student and Scholar Services) and International Student Support and Engagement invite international students and scholars at the University of Iowa to join them for a weekly coffee hour every Wednesday from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. at T.Spoons coffee shop (located in University Capitol Centre).