Dr. Adriana Semprum-Clavier, Co-Director of the DMD Advanced Standing program and Clinical Associate Professor, Restorative Dentistry, was honored with the Colgate Palmolive Hispanic Dental Association (HDA) National Outstanding Faculty Award at the HDA 25th Annual conference in San Antonio, TX.
The Colgate Palmolive award recognizes the top faculty member who has “made a significant contribution toward enhancing the overall quality of oral health for the Hispanic population by exceeding the scope of their position as faculty member and HSDA advisor,” said Dr. Vidal Balderas, National President of the HDA.
Dr. Semprum is advisor to the Hispanic Student Dental Association (HSDA) chapter at the College. The HSDA nominated Dr. Semprum for the national award “based on our activities to promote and improve oral health in the Hispanic community,” she said.
With Hispanics in Chicago “almost a third of the population,” Dr. Semprum said, that provides a “great opportunity to work with the Hispanic community in need. Hispanic patients can feel more comfortable with a dental professional who shares his/her culture and language. I assist students on finding opportunities for service in the community.”
Dr. Semprum helped establish a partnership between the Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Esperanza Health Centers and the HSDA to conduct monthly oral health education and application of fluoride varnish for an average of 15 families one Saturday a month. During these sessions students under her supervision provide oral hygiene instructions and diet counseling. The UIC team also provides referrals to other oral health providers.
“With this partnership we were able to significantly increase the percentage of children having a dental visit by the 24th month of life,” Dr. Semprum said.
Jacqueline Magallanes, president of the College’s HSDA, nominated Dr. Semprum whom, Magallanes said, “goes above and beyond by mentoring HSDA members in advocating for the oral and general health of underserved Hispanic communities in Chicago through volunteer work with Esperanza.
“Dr. Semprum is always willing to find an answer to a question or solution to a problem for students, and always has time to meet with you one on one,” Magallanes said. “She inspires the members of HSDA to reach back to our needy communities and be the voice of the underserved.”
“I promote advocacy for our students,” Dr. Semprum said. “I am always available. I am in contact with students every day and I think about myself as a role model for Hispanics and non-Hispanic students. I help them improve their performance with a good learning environment and help them overcome their challenges. I like to encourage them to invest in education since it is their best instrument for success.
“And, I am thankful to my students,” she concluded. “It is because of them I motivate myself every day.”
The Hispanic Dental Association is a non-profit organization composed of oral health professionals and students dedicated to promoting and improving the oral health of the Hispanic community and providing advocacy for Hispanic oral health professionals in the United States. Log on to www.hdassoc.org for more information.