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Opening America’s newest dental school takes a lot time and planning. Countless events, speeches, and interviews have taken place since ATSU’s Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health received its initial accreditation in August. Here you will find Still Magazine’s exclusive MOSDOH content —photos, events, quotes, media coverage, and more.

So many events, so little time

Then & now: MOSDOH in the making

Construction on the Interprofessional Education Building took more than a year to complete. See how St. Louis firm Cannon Design brought everything together in this exclusive photo slideshow. Cannon also is designing the two-story, 93-chair dental clinic planned for a site near Lafayette Square in St. Louis, Mo., where third- and fourth-year students will gain clinical skills with the help of Grace Hill Health Centers Inc.

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Donor recognition

Without the support of many dedicated donors, America’s newest dental school would not have been possible. In honor of their commitment, MOSDOH hosted an Insider’s Tour to give its donors a glimpse of the new Interprofessional Education Building on Aug. 19. ATSU President Craig M. Phelps, DO, ’84, and MOSDOH Dean Christopher Halliday, DDS, MPH, addressed 234 donors and guests. Randy Rogers, CFP®, interim vice president, university advancement, was master of ceremonies. Here is your sneak peek of their sneak peek.

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Orientation week

ATSU rolled out the red carpet while welcoming new students to MOSDOH during orientation week, held Sept. 25-30. Here are a few quotes overheard from the weeklong event:

“Our focus is on each of you. Making sure that you are successful—not only every day at ATSU academically, but also socially, also spiritually, also the development of your mind, body, and spirit.”

– ATSU President Craig M. Phelps, DO, ’84

“You are special. You are the first. You will always be the first. Everybody will look to you as setting the benchmark for what comes after this. We are going to learn almost as much from you as you will learn from us.”

– Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs Norman Gevitz, PhD

“It’s been a long journey for all of us. Whenever we had a tough day during the planning process, we would come over here and walk through the building and it made it so good because we kept envisioning you sitting here. This building is for you guys.”

– MOSDOH Dean Christopher Halliday, DDS, MPH

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White Coat Ceremony

The event on Sept. 28 made the dental school journey very real for MOSDOH’s inaugural class of 42 students. See the exclusive photo slideshow and watch the ceremony on ATSU’s YouTube channel.

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First day of classes

Oct. 1 has come and gone, and the first day of classes was a success. See how quickly new students got into the action, putting brand new dental instruments to work while waxing teeth and observing the oral cavity on fellow students.

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At a special event held Oct. 24, MOSDOH ceremonially opened its doors to the ATSU and Kirksville communities. ATSU President Craig M. Phelps, DO, ’84, led the program, which included addresses from MOSDOH Dean Christopher Halliday, DDS, MPH, and ATSU Board of Trustees Chair G. Scott Drew, DO, FAOCD, ’87, as well as a blessing by ASDOH Assistant Dean for American Indian Affairs George Blue Spruce, DDS, MPH.


Big man on campus

More Q&A with MOSDOH Dean Christopher Halliday, DDS, MPH

Dr. Halliday

Dr. Halliday

Q: You left a post with the U.S. government to take on the role of MOSDOH’s inaugural dean. What attracted you to ATSU?

A: I’m an advocate for including oral health in total healthcare. That’s what interested me in ATSU. One of its pillars is whole person healthcare, and I’ve found this to be a perfect match between my belief and the University’s belief.

Q: How has your personal belief system shaped your career?

A: I truly believe in altruism and the need to assist those who need help. I think I picked that up partly from my family (I come from a family of healthcare providers), and also because as I studied quite a bit of anthropology in undergrad and it raised my awareness of the world and its levels of diversity—affluence and the amount and types of healthcare different individuals can receive. It raised my awareness of how profound the unmet needs are in the world.

Q: In what ways did ergonomics play a role in designing the Dental Simulation Laboratory?

A: The simulation lab will allow the student to not only best position the patient for treatment, but also allow the dental student to understand best ergonomically how to position themselves. This is important because dentists who don’t practice proper ergonomics while working on a patient can develop repetitive neck or hand injuries later in life.

Q: Tuition is rising nationwide. How does MOSDOH plan to keep it competitive for its students?

A: We understand that students carry the burden of tuition on their shoulders, and we want to recognize that by making sure we run and manage the most efficient and effective dental school possible.

In the media

Local media covered all angles of the inauguration and MOSDOH’s opening day.

MDA Focus magazine

A.T. Still University teams up with Grace Hill to expand dental care

New interprofessional school integrates medical and dental students

Kirksville celebrates history in the making

ATSU coin becomes part of history of new dental school

Dental school opens in Kirksville


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