Eight recognized at dentistry honor society awards ceremony

Dental school faculty, students and alumni among recipients

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

A faculty member, six graduates and a current student are now part of the Alpha Beta Chapter of Omicron Kappa Upsilon (OKU) at the West Virginia University School of Dentistry.

OKU was organized in 1914 as a national dental honor society "to encourage and develop a spirit of emulation among students in dentistry and to recognize, in an appropriate manner, those who shall distinguish themselves by a high grade of scholarship".

Dr. R. Constance Wiener and dental school dean pose at OKU awards ceremony. Wiener was inducted as a new faculty member.Associate Professor R. Constance Wiener, DMD, PhD, a member of the school’s Department of Dental Practice and Rural Health, was installed as the chapter’s newest faculty member. Dr. Wiener is heavily involved with student research at the dental school.

Dental student Kyla Swearingen receives an OKU award from Dr. Valerie Perrine and Dr. Anthony Tom Borgia.Third-year dental student, Kyla Swearingen, received the Kramer Award of Excellence from Dr. Tom Borgia, dental school dean. Award winners must demonstrate scholarship, character and promise for dentistry advancement.

Dr. Anthony Tom Borgia poses with the recent graduate who are now OKU members.New alumni members from the dental school graduating class of 2019 also became OKU inductees Katie Fullen, DDS, Eric Hatten, DDS, Christopher Mallow, DDS, Angela Pelehac, DDS and Kathleen Schessler, DDS, were introduced by Dr. Louise Veselicky, past OKU president and associate vice president for health sciences center academic affairs.

Dr. Bridgeman and Dr. Borgia pose at the OKU awards ceremony.WVU School of Dentistry alumni, David Bridgeman, DDS is the newest honorary fellow in OKU. Bridgeman is a past president of the West Virginia Dental Association and is a fellow in both the American College of Dentists and the International College of Dentists.

The May 9, 2019 ceremony marked the 58th awards ceremony of the WVU OKU chapter. During that time, five faculty members have served as chapter president.

Following the recognitions, Alpha Beta Chapter officers were introduced. They include:

Dr. Valerie Perrine, President
Dr. Scott Young, President-elect
Dr. Shelby Alexander, Vice President
Dr. Bob Wanker, Secretary/Treasurer