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CDA Update

CDA members and California’s dental community turn to our association for timely, trusted information about current and developing issues in dentistry. The Update provides resources and guidance on topics affecting dentists, their patients and their profession, including dental benefit plans, regulatory compliance, legislation and advocacy, patient safety and practice management.

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March Student Spotlight

Quick Summary:

Get to know CDA’s March Student Spotlight, Lori Foust from Loma Linda School of Dentistry class of 2021.

What has dental school been like during the COVID-19 pandemic?

During the last few months, we’ve still had the opportunity to work on clinic under limited capacity. While it has been challenging and slow at times, I am grateful that we have been able to continue seeing patients, and I’ve been trying to take advantage of what I can learn from each case. We haven’t been able to see the same number of patients as previously, so each patient experience needs to be valued.

Have your career aspirations changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic?

I am lucky enough to have family in the dental field and plan on working with them after graduation. Because of that, my plans have not changed due to the pandemic. I am aware that I’m not leaving dental school as prepared as I had hoped, but I am that much more thankful to be entering the career field with a mentor I trust to help guide me when I’m presented with cases I might not feel as comfortable with.

How do you see dentistry evolving amid the ongoing pandemic? 

It is hard to say how much will stick permanently, but right now I see the advantages of teledentistry and virtual dentistry. At our school, it has allowed us to speak with patients in advance and order necessary COVID-19 tests prior to the patients’ appointments.

What has been your favorite dental school moment or experience so far?

During dental school, I had the opportunity to get involved with American Student Dental Association. I was able to serve as an officer with our ASDA chapter and attend several conferences. At these conferences, I had the unique opportunity to meet and interact with students from dental schools all over the country. My brother was a year ahead of me in dental school and one of my favorite memories was a conference we were able to attend together.

Has a current dental school professor made a positive impact on you? What would you like to say to them?

I have been overwhelmed by the kindness and selflessness of so many of my professors. This year due to COVID, our hours have changed requiring teachers to stay on campus from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on some days. COVID has asked so much from our faculty and I will never forget the sacrifices they have made during this time so that my classmates and I are able to continue with our education.

What made you interested in dentistry?

My father is a dentist and I grew up seeing the work that he did. I realized the joy that fixing a person’s smile can bring and just how much it can help others. I have always been more hands-on and crafty and I also appreciate the artistic approach that dentistry facilitates.

What is your favorite comfort food?

I’m from Texas so I would have to say Southern-style biscuits and gravy! I love breakfast food.

Why are you #cdaproud?

CDA has introduced me to organized dentistry and the unique and unlimited opportunities that it provides!