On top of the typical didactic and preclinical courses we’re taking throughout the year, 22 UCSF students and I are working toward a larger goal: bettering the UCSF School of Dentistry as ADCFP fellows. The ADCFP (Academic Dental Careers Fellowship Program) is an opportunity for motivated, research- and education-minded students to work with a faculty mentor on a project geared toward improving dental education. My project, for example, is to implement waste reduction and waste management systems in our dental clinics and simulation labs and eventually to incorporate sustainability education into current practice and curriculum.

With a cohort capped at 22 students, UCSF’s 2018-2019 ADCFP class boasts projects with a wide diversity of topics, including depression and wellness among California dental students, the accuracy of UCSF student treatment phasing, assessment of nitrous oxide sedation curriculum, and improvement of the relevance of biomaterials courses. The ADCFP program as a whole is designed by national ADEA and has a number of requirements that help students learn about academic careers, including mandatory faculty interviews and teaching activities.

UCSF ADEA ADCFP 2018-2019 Cohort

ADEA Education Chair board members have the responsibility of organizing monthly meetings for ADCFP fellows. Here at UCSF, our November meeting featured a fun Jeopardy game with facts and stories from five of our clinical coaches!  Dr. Diana Nguyen (DDS) reflected on a humorous incident when a patient inquired about her performing breast implants. Dr. Kurt Schroeder (DDS) shed light on his decision to go back to specialize in endodontics after 12 years of general dentistry. And Dr. Ram Vaderhobli (BDS, MS) shared some powerful advice: be thankful for the opportunity of learning and growth that each patient offers, which will help you become a better healthcare professional.    

On a more exciting note, 11 members of our cohort will attend the ADEA Annual Session this March in Chicago, IL.  There, fellows will participate in a poster session presenting their projects to dental students, faculty, and educators from around the nation.  In particular, I am looking forward to the poster session as an opportunity to share my project on sustainability and inspire students and faculty from other schools to look into ways to improve their own sustainability. At this conference, we will also have the opportunity to attend three full days of plenary sessions, speakers, and workshops all about improving the field of dental education. It will be a wonderful weekend of student networking, bonding, and learning all made possible by ADEA, ADCFP, and UCSF! 

The UCSF ADCFP programming is overseen by faculty advisor Dr. Wilson Hsin and run by ADEA Education and Jr. Education Chairs Auvi Tran ( and Claire Skach ( Please contact either Education Chair if you’d like to hear more information about UCSF’s program! 

Posters used in my ADCFP project on sustainability