Written By: Samantha DeRidder
The ASDA District 6 and 7 Meeting was hosted by the University of Louisville on September 22-24, 2017. I was one of the nine fortunate first-year dental students selected to attend. Being that the meeting took place near the beginning of my first semester in dental school, I had little familiarity with what the organization was about prior to attending the district meeting.
It did not take long for me to catch what is known as the “ASDA fever.” After a long week of exams, I was fully planning to take a nap on the 6 hour drive from Milwaukee to Louisville. Much to my surprise, I spent the full duration of the trip jamming to a great playlist and conversing with my colleagues about our passions for dentistry. The energy in the car was enough to make me completely forget about my exhaustion, and yet it was only a glimpse of the energy I would experience throughout the rest of the weekend.
During each day we had the opportunity to hear from various speakers including the ADA President-Elect, National ASDA leaders, and a motivational speaker. We learned about various topics such as how to: continue improving our local chapters, plan for our futures as practitioners, protect ourselves with malpractice insurance, and represent ourselves on a legislative level.
The evenings allowed time for social events including a mixer on night one and a horse race at Churchill Downs on night two. Aside from being very fun and well put together events, those socials allowed us to meet and collaborate with the many motivated dental student leaders from throughout the Midwest.
I highly recommend getting involved with ASDA to every dental student. I returned home with new connections, new ideas for our chapter, and a profound sense of the importance of having an organized group in dentistry to represent and advocate for our education and profession. I caught the infamous ASDA fever, and I plan on spreading it throughout MUSoD and beyond.
Contact Sam at Samantha.Deridder@mu.edu