SIU SDM’s Garcia to be ADEA Scholar in Residence

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Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine’s (SIU SDM) Dr. Nathalia Garcia will participate in the American Dental Education Association’s (ADEA) Enid A. Neidle Scholar-in-Residence program.

Dr. Nathalia Garcia, periodontist at the SIU School of Dental Medicine.

If we increase female participation at every level of dentistry, it will become easier for both genders to be successful ...

Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine’s (SIU SDM) Dr. Nathalia Garcia will participate in the American Dental Education Association’s (ADEA) Enid A. Neidle Scholar-in-Residence program. The award was announced at the March 2017 ADEA Annual Session in Long Beach, Calif.

To obtain the award, Garcia had to propose a research project related to women issues in a dental academic career. She is studying “Gender and Faculty Research Productivity in Academic Dentistry.”

“During my experience at ADEA, I will survey faculty from dental schools around the country to evaluate productivity, and determine what perceptions and practices might be encouraging or discouraging their ability and willingness to engage in the kind of advanced studies the field requires,” said Garcia, a periodontist at the SIU SDM. “In the course of my experience at ADEA I would also use every opportunity to be more informed about promotion and advancement policies for women in academia in other areas of the country.

“I would like to know how gender related issues are dealt with successfully in other institutions, and how other universities or organizations promote greater satisfaction and quality of teaching for women in academic dentistry nationally.”

Garcia will spend time at the ADEA office in Washington, D.C. during July 2017, and again in both March and June 2018. She will conduct her research, and at the same time explore issues facing women faculty, including promotion, advancement and tenure policies, entry and re-entry into the workforce, child care and elder care, women’s health, work patterns, advanced education and research opportunities, and other gender-related issues. Each scholar is assigned to a senior ADEA staff member and involved in a range of ADEA activities, in addition to her principal project.

Garcia expects the experience to not only benefit her personally and professionally, but also the SIU SDM. “The ADEA experience will provide discovery of new avenues of leadership in my work and personal life,” she said. “I hope to develop contacts and guidance, so that I can provide greater leadership and opportunities for the women that I teach and mentor.

“I expect to access information to promote excellence in education and gender fairness,” Garcia said. “I would also like to become a resource for women, who may be considering careers in academic dentistry, and thereby reinforce the importance of women in the field of dental education nationally. If we increase female participation at every level of dentistry, it will become easier for both genders to be successful and find the personal balance necessary to provide high quality dental care to their patients.”

This Scholar-in-Residence Program honors Enid A. Neidle, former president of ADEA (1985-86). Under her leadership, ADEA adopted its policy of promoting the advancement of women in dental education. The program offers a unique opportunity for a dental educator to concentrate on issues affecting female faculty.

The SIU School of Dental Medicine students manage approximately 35,000 patient visits each year at its patient clinics in Alton and East St. Louis. In addition, students offer oral health treatment, screenings and education to more than 10,000 people annually through a wide variety of off-campus community outreach events. These opportunities provide students the training they need to graduate and become highly skilled dentists. The School of Dental Medicine is a vital oral health care provider for residents of southern and central Illinois, and the St. Louis metropolitan region.

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