by Cindy Abole
MUSC’s Sigma Chi Chapter of the Psi Omega Dental Fraternity was honored
for their contributions to community service and volunteer excellence.
The group received two awards, the Psi Omega National Dental
Fraternity’s Community Service award for Province 4 (region) and the
2009 National Psi Omega’s 2009 National Founders Award for Community
Service. The award was presented recently at Psi Omega Fraternity’s
national council meeting in Atlanta.
Chapter of the Psi Omega-Sigma Dental Fraternity Elizabeth Fulmer,
bottom left, secretary; Byron Guffee, president, top left; Dr. Rick
Albenesius, faculty sponsor; and members Josh Hardwick, top right, and
Ashley Eith recognize another chapter award.
MUSC is among seven
chapters in Province 4 of Psi Omega and represents dental schools in
Alabama, North Carolina, Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee and South
Carolina. MUSC’s Sigma Chi Chapter is among 36 chapters across the
country competing for this award. MUSC Psi Omega dental students
received the national founders award previously in 2001, 2005 and 2006.
“Receiving this award speaks volumes as to the level of community work
and commitment our dental students have done this year and in the
previous 10-plus years since we’ve begun our Sigma Chi Chapter,” said
Rick Albenesius, DMD, associate professor in the College of Dental
Medicine. Albenesius and colleagues Ted McGill, DMD, associate
professor, and Gabriel Ingraham, DMD, assistant professor, College of
Dental Medicine, serve as faculty advisors to the group.
MUSC’s chapter is composed of 80 active members who have volunteered
more than 1,500 hours throughout the year. As a result of their
efforts, they were able to contribute and distribute more than $2,000
among philanthropic groups, community free dental clinics and the
dental school’s Ian Burns Scholarship Fund. The group is currently
supporting Families Helping Families as their holiday project. Their
ongoing goal is to educate the public and improve the quality of dental
care in the Tri-county community.
“Students may be busy, but we also try to find time in our schedules to
get out and help others through community service,” said Elizabeth
Fulmer, a third-year dental student and chapter secretary. “As future
dental providers, it provides us the chance to help others in the same
way we would be assisting and caring for our future patients.” Fellow
third-year dental student Byron Guffee is Psi Omega’s chapter president.
Other community projects Sigma Chi has participated in was the DAD
project and an annual fishing tournament to support dental mission
trips abroad. Upcoming projects for the group include support with the
Special Smiles pavilion at the Lowcountry Special Olympics, February’s
children’s dental health month activities and outreach via Give Kids a
Additionally, Sigma Chi students continue to serve the community by
volunteering at free dental clinics throughout the Tri-county.
The Psi Omega National Dental Education Fraternity is an organization
focused on maintaining and advancing high standards in the dentistry
profession by instilling a spirit of fraternal cooperation in advancing
the dental profession by improving teaching, practice, research, ethics
Friday, Dec. 18, 2009