Naval Postgraduate Dental School students learn about ADA benefits

Engaged: A resident at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School engages with ADA leaders during a visit Wednesday.

Engaged: A resident at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School engages with ADA leaders during a visit Wednesday.

Bethesda, Md. — Born to a military family, Dr. Carol Gomez Summerhays always knew she wanted to serve her country.

On Nov. 4, according to ADA News, she shared that experience — four years of active duty, seven years of inactive duty; now retired — as a Navy dentist with a group of post-doctoral residents continuing their respective studies at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School.

Presented in town hall fashion, Dr. Carol Gomez Summerhays, along with Dr. Jeffrey Cole, Fourth District ADA trustee, whose district includes the federal dental services, praised the audience for their military commitments and imparted ways the Association can help them in their careers.

Visit: Capt. Sean C. Meehan, a dentist and associate dean of the school, with Drs. Carol Gomez Summerhays and Jeffrey Cole at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School in Bethesda, Md.

Visit: Capt. Sean C. Meehan, a dentist and associate dean of the school, with Drs. Carol Gomez Summerhays and Jeffrey Cole at the Naval Postgraduate Dental School in Bethesda, Md.

“The same concept that fuels a well-trained and well-equipped military unit applies to the team-based approach to dentistry,” said Dr. Summerhays, ADA president elect and third generation military. “When we stand and work together, with trust and integrity, to address the challenges we face, we perform at our highest level.”

For about an hour, Drs. Summerhays and Cole showcased the benefits of ADA membership and engaged with the residents, who asked smart questions about some of dentistry’s toughest issues.

From universal licensure to alternative practice models to dental therapists, the 25 students asked what organized dentistry could do for them.

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