Congratulations to the Class of 2024!

Columbia has a long and venerated history of preparing dentists to provide exceptional care and service to others. The University conferred its first DDS degree in 1922 and for more than 100 years has been graduating medical professionals who are poised to become leaders in the field of oral health. For the students graduating from the Columbia University School of Dental Medicine as members of the Class of 2024, May 15 and 16 were the culmination of four years of hard work and sacrifice. 

In the annual Class Day ceremony held on May 15, students in the graduating class who distinguished themselves through their academic pursuits, their leadership skills, and their commitment to service were acknowledged. Dean Roseanna Graham and Senior Associate Dean for Predoctoral and Student Affairs Dana Wolf congratulated the graduates and their assembled family and friends. Graham noted that the newly-minted dentists are the newest members of a 108 year continuum of practitioners who recognize the fundamental connection between oral health and general health. 

And, on the morning May 16,  in a ritual with its roots in the 12th century, 102 new doctors of dental surgery participated in the hooding ceremony, many of whom were hooded by family and friends. The keynote address was delivered by James A. Lipton, DDS'71, PhD'80, former director of National Health Service Corps for New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, former chief dental officer for Community, Migrant, and Rural Health Services, and former director of Research Training and Career Development at the National Institutes of Dental and Cranialfacial Research Dr. Lipton’s long association with CDM includes service on the faculties of Columbia University College of Dental Medicine and Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and longstanding membership of the Columbia University’s College of Dental Medicine’s Board of Visitors. Dr. Lipton encouraged the graduates to embrace continuing education, noting that the practice of dentistry when he graduated from dental school looked nothing like the practice of dentistry today. “It’s learners who inherit the future,” he said. The program for the predoctoral graduation ceremony can be found here. You can watch a video of the ceremony here.

In the afternoon, the College held the Postdoctoral Graduation Ceremony. Dr. James Fine, senior associate dean of postdoctoral academic and student affairs, presided and delivered the keynote address. Noting that the postgraduate ceremony was the final Columbia ceremony of graduation week, Dr. Fine said that the university had saved the best for last. graduating students that, having completed advanced dental education, they now possessed specialized skills and knowledge. "We recognize your accomplishments and your expertise," Fine told the graduates. The program for the postdoctoral graduation ceremony can be found here. You can watch a video of the ceremony here.