Dean’s High Five – April 2022

Every day, there are special achievements and newsworthy headlines happening at the School of Dentistry. In an effort to give proper acknowledgment and share these successes, please tune in for the monthly Dean’s High 5 as we acknowledge those responsible for the top five stories happening at Detroit Mercy Dental.

Congratulations on your hard work – you make Detroit Mercy the place to lead and learn.


Office of Student Services and Enrollment represent Detroit Mercy Dental at the 2022 ADEA GoDental Recruitment Event 

On March 19, the Office of Student Services and Enrollment Management proudly represented Detroit Mercy Dental at the 2022 American Dental Education Association (ADEA) GoDental Recruitment Event in Philadelphia, Penn.  

Assistant Dean of Student Services and Enrollment Management Juliette Daniels presented “Protecting Your Well-Being When Preparing for Dental School” as the keynote speaker of the packed event. Director of Admissions Steven Chang was a featured panelist who, along with other university admissions officers, answered important questions and presented a short video on admissions-specific topics. In addition, Director of Diversity and Inclusion Melvin Lunkins and dental students Ja’Nay Jones, Sierra Dowlen and Trey Hester represented Detroit Mercy Dental during the cumulative recruitment fair. 

Congratulations on a job well done.  

Photo courtesy of the American Dental Education Association. 


School of Dentistry receives Delta Dental Foundation grant for new Senior Oral Health Project 

Professor Judith Jones and Director of Outreach Divesh Byrappagari were awarded grant funding from the Delta Dental Foundation for the new Detroit Mercy Senior Oral Health Equality Project for which they are co-directors. This project aims to provide more seniors with access to care, primarily those underserved in Detroit’s senior centers and assisted living facilities. As an effort for equity in the senior community, this project will also increase the importance of oral health and the visibility of this sometimes-overlooked demographic. 

The pilot program is scheduled to begin June 1.  

Congratulations Jones and Byrappagari!  

Official press release for this project is coming soon.  


Rafel Pacheco receives the Michigan Dental Association – Dental Faculty Award

Congratulations to Associate Professor Rafel Pacheco who has been awarded the Dental Faculty Award by the Michigan Dental Association (MDA). This award is given as public recognition to two dentist members who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to organized dentistry and are also actively involved in the education of dental or graduate dental students. 

Pacheco will formally receive the Dental Faculty Award at the 2022 MDA House of Delegates meeting on April 28, at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi.  


Divesh Byrappagari receives Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health grant in support of Mobile Clinic 

Director of Outreach Divesh Byrappagari has received a $300,000 grant from Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health to support the School of Dentistry’s mobile clinic. Funds from the grant will support the beloved Titans for Teeth Mobile Clinic and will also provide a four-year scholarship to a deserving under-represented minority dental student selected from the Summer Enrichment Program at Detroit Mercy Dental. 

The Titans for Teeth Mobile Clinic provides comprehensive dental care to uninsured and underserved adults and children in the Detroit Metropolitan Area. 


Tenzin Dadul receives the Pierre Fauchard Academy’s Special Faculty Appreciation Award 

Congratulations to Clinical Assistant Professor Tenzin Dadul who has been awarded the 2022 Michigan Section of the Pierre Fauchard Academy’s Special Faculty Appreciation Award. The mission of Pierre Fauchard is to recognize and develop outstanding leadership in the profession of dentistry. 

Dadul joined Detroit Mercy Dental in 2019 and has since aided the school in transitioning into a more digitally integrated institution, benefiting current and future students alike.