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Ohio Dental Association Foundation Again Awards Over $60,000 in Dental Education Grants and Scholarships Across Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Sept. 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For the second consecutive year, the Ohio Dental Association Foundation (ODAF) has awarded significant dollars to help fund dental education in Ohio.

Supporting student education and community programs in Ohio, the ODAF funded five grants and 25 scholarships in September. Of the 25 scholarships, 14 went to dental school students and 11 to dental auxiliary students.

Recipients must be Ohio residents, demonstrate academic ability and have financial need. The collective amount of the 2008 scholarships and grants is $60,750, bringing the total grants and scholarships awarded since 1995 to $389,270.

Chairman of the ODAF Board of Trustees, Dr. John Gerstenmaier of Akron, said it is challenging to select recipients when the number and caliber of qualified applicants was so high.

"When you have 30 dental school students who excel academically and have financial need, and you know the burden of student loan debt will be high," Gerstenmaier said, "the selection process is even more difficult."

This year's dental school scholarship winners are listed below, along with their Ohio home town, amount awarded and college attending.

-- Barbara "Dawn" Cheney, Columbus, $3,000, OSU College of


-- Yakov Elizerov, Richmond Hts., $1,250, CWRU School of Dental Medicine

-- Chelsey Johnson, Massillon, $3,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Yirae Kang, Beachwood, $3,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Brandon Kroffke, Medina, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Matthew Lemke, Strongsville, $2,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Lauren Mell, Avon Lake, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Gretchen Pawloski, Marietta, $500, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Brian Putman, Payne, $2,000 OSU College of Dentistry

-- Luke Simonis, Euclid, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Gabrielle Torbeck, Harrison, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- Eric Ulm, New London, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

-- David E. Urbanek, Willoughby, $3,000, CWRU School of Dental Medicine

-- Kenneth Verdell, Oregon, $1,000, OSU College of Dentistry

In addition to providing financial assistance to future dental professionals in Ohio, the ODAF awarded $20,000 in grants to Ohio community oral health programs. These programs include:

-- Xylitol for Caries Prevention in Inner City Children, $5,000, CWRU

School of Dental Medicine

-- Pack A Smile, $3,000, statewide educational program for Give Kids A

Smile! Day events

-- Student Leadership Development Program, $6,000, CWRU School of Dental


-- Dr. Milton Rubin Oral Health Education Program (Akron) $5,000, Beacon

Journal Charity

-- Reading for Smiles, $1,000, Dayton

This year's grants and scholarships were funded by the ODA Foundation through its Endowment Fund, the Akron Dental Society Claypool Fund and the Bowers Fund. Additional funds came from a grant given to the ODAF by Sam's Club of Dublin.

To learn more about the ODA Foundation, a partner with the national "Our Legacy Our Future" initiative, visit or call (614) 486-2700. Donations can be sent to the ODAF, 1370 Dublin Rd., Columbus, OH 43215.

SOURCE Ohio Dental Association
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