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Welcome to SCADA


On behalf of the Student Research Program Officers and Board of Governors, I welcome you to this Alumni Association comprised of a select and elite group of dentists who participated in the Student Research Programs at their individual schools and their country's national program. I applaud you for your interest in research and encourage you to take full advantage of our programs. We are most appreciative of the outstanding sponsorship of Dentsply Sirona for over sixty-years of support and the American Association for Dental Research as the host of our program at each Annual Session. Please review our exciting website to read the history of the Student Research Program and to become familiar with our story. It is my sincere hope that this organization will open new horizons and fellowship for you within the dental community.

Falk Wehrhan, DDS, Ph.D, SCADA Alumni Association President


Welcome to SCADA!   SCADA – the Student Competition for Advancing Dental Research and its Application – is a global student competition, aimed at engaging the next generation of dental professionals in the discovery and advancement of dental research, and the improvement of oral health worldwide.

The first International Association of Student Clinicians - American Dental Association (ADA) or SCADA Program was launched as a joint venture between DENTSPLY International and the American Dental Association in 1959 during the centennial session of the ADA in New York City.

The program was conceived by the late Dr. Harold H. Hillenbrand, former Executive Director of the ADA, and the late Mr. Henry M. Thornton, former Chairman of DENTSPLY International. Their goal was to help students discover research, advance themselves, and find inspiring ways to improve dental care – and continues in this spirit today.

Program Goals

  • Engage students to discover the importance and power of dental research.
  • Provide opportunities for students to Advance their Research skills and careers.
  • Inspire students to look for new ways to have a positive impact on dental care and oral health.

Active Programs

The Image shows all countries where SCADA is available

Canada: The first Canadian Program took place in 1971 in cooperation with the Canadian Dental Association. All 10 Canadian dental schools are invited to take part in this annual event.

Germany: Expansion in Europe took place in Germany beginning in 1987 in cooperation with the German Dental Society and the German Dental Association. This annual program includes the dental schools in both Austria and Switzerland.

Scandinavia: In 1991, a separate program was initiated for dental students in Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, and Iceland. It normally takes place each year during the Annual Conference of the Danish Dental Association. This Program was expanded to include the Netherlands and the Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

Japan: The initial foray into Japan took place in 1995 and has been an annual event since that time. It has gained in popularity and prestige among Japanese dental educators from the 29 schools and is conducted annually in cooperation with the Japan Dental Association.

France: Further expansion in Europe occurred in 1997 with the introduction of a new program in France in cooperation with the French Dental Association. This event is conducted each year during the ADF Meeting as is open to all 15 dental schools.

Thailand: The Dental Association of Thailand partnered with DENTSPLY on a Student Clinician Program starting in 1998. It is conducted annually during the DAT Meeting and is open to all 7 of the nation’s dental schools.

South Korea: Additional expansion in Asia was seen in 1999 when a new program was established in South Korea. The Korean Dental Association co-sponsors the program each year and it is open to all 11 of the county’s dental schools.

Taiwan: This popular program was introduced in Taiwan in 2000 in cooperation with the Chinese Taipei Association for Dental Sciences. It is conducted annually during their Congress.

Mexico: The SCADA program was launched in Mexico in 2013, giving the Mexican students the opportunity to look for better methods of practicing and advancing in dental science through research. 7 Universities actively participant in the annual Event.


Falk Wehrhan,
DDS, Ph.D.


Yoko Ishida-Okumura,
DDS, Ph.D.

Immediate Past President

Robert Augsburger

Vice President

Teresa Dolan,


Moataz (Taz) Elkasrawy,
BDS, D.D.S., Ph.D.


Erin Ealba Bumann,
D.D.S., Ph.D., M.S.

Director at Large

Global SCADA Program Information

The 61st annual SCADA program was held under special circumstances. Despite COVID-19 restricting public events, US dental students were invited to participate in the research competition virtually.

All US dental schools were invited to nominate a student to participate in the research competition in one of two categories – Clinical Science and Public Health Research and Basic and Translational Science. The participants submitted a complete portfolio for review to an international panel of judges, including an electronic copy of his/her research poster, a slide presentation, and a video of their oral presentation. Research projects were submitted by 51 student clinicians and seven outstanding award winners were selected. 

Category I: Clinical Science and Public Health Research Winners

Patrick E. Donnelly

University of Pittsburgh

'Acellular Hydrogel Regenerates Vascularized Tissue in Root Canal Therapy.' 

1st Place Winner

Kathryn Teruya

University of Missouri - Kansas City

'Changes in Dental Student Empathy During Training.'

2nd Place Winner

Taylor Robertson

University of Pittsburgh

'Spectral analysis of one-shade nanofilled resin composites under different lights.'

3rd Place Winner

Category II: Basic and Translational Science Winners

Blake LaTendresse

Creighton University

'Testing Immunogenic Peptides Against Candida Albicans..'

1st Place Winner

Eric Mullins

University of Nevada, Las Vegas

'Comparative Expression Of Exosome-Derived Dental Pulp Stem Cell (DPSC) MicroRNAs..'

2nd Place Winner


Madison Aungst

University of Colorado

'A Flow Cytometer Protocol for Quantifying Microbes in Dental Waterlines..'

3rd Place Winner

Tanner Godfrey

University of Alabama at Birmingham

'BAF45A Mediated Chromatin Landscaping Controls Bone Formation..'

3rd Place Winner

SCADA Guidelines


A participation guide for US Student Clinicians and Faculty Advisors