Foundation accepting applications for Student Loan Repayment Grant

Recent dental school graduates and students who will soon graduate from dental school can apply now through July 31 for the CDA Foundation’s 2019 Student Loan Repayment Grant.

Awarded annually, the grant provides up to $35,000 per year for a maximum of $105,000 in exchange for the recipient’s three-year commitment to care for the underserved.

Student loan debt is one of the largest financial hurdles a dentist may face. The average educational debt for all indebted graduates in the class of 2018 for public and private dental schools was $251,869 and $326,133, respectively, according to the American Dental Education Association.

Andrea Ustarez, DDS, a 2016 graduate of the UCSF School of Dentistry, was awarded the 2018 Student Loan Repayment Grant. She is currently working at AltaMed in Los Angeles — a health clinic with the mission to provide care to underserved communities. Dr. Ustarez credits her personal experiences with oral health care disparities as the driving force behind her interest in community dentistry.

Since 2002, the grant has enabled 19 dentists to pursue their passion of working in public health where they have helped nearly 100,000 patients and provided more than $27 million in care.

Grant application guidelines

To be eligible for the Student Loan Repayment Grant, applicants must have either graduated from an ADA-accredited dental school with a DDS or DMD degree no more than three years prior to the year they apply or be positioned to graduate in the next three months at the time of application. Applicants must also be eligible to practice dentistry in California and have secured employment with an eligible work site. The complete application criteria are available on the CDA Foundation website.

The application period closes at 11: 59 p.m., Wednesday, July 31.

The selected runner-up for the Student Loan Repayment Grant will receive the Webb Family Grant, which provides an award of up to $5,000 toward the recipient’s educational loan. More information about the Webb Family Grant, named for Russell Webb, DDS, and Kathi Webb, is available on the CDA Foundation website.

Apply for and learn more about the grant. Learn more about all Foundation grants and awards, which are available throughout the year and have various deadlines and submissions periods, at cdafoundation.org/receive.

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Humanitarian Award recognizes dentists for volunteer commitment, leadership
Nominate an active or retired dentist for 2019 award
April 1 through June 30, CDA members or component dental society executive directors can nominate a California-licensed dentist for the 2019 CDA Foundation Humanitarian Award. Each year, the Humanitarian Award recognizes one individual for a lifetime of volunteer commitment and leadership that have had a broad impact on oral health and the improvement of the human condition.

The CDA Foundation has named Andrea Ustarez, DDS, the recipient of its 2018 Student Loan Repayment Grant. Awarded annually to a recent dental school graduate, the grant assists with repayment of education loans in exchange for the recipient’s commitment to care for the underserved. Dr. Ustarez will receive up to $105,000 over three years to put toward repayment of her student loans while she realizes her goal of working in public health.