The inaugural meeting was well-attended with about 55 students, plus faculty members, on hand to learn more about the new ethics club. Raymond Klein, a senior dental student from the University of Southern California (USC) who is known as the founding father of SPEC, attended and gave a presentation on the history of the club.
Klein explained that he and six other students at USC organized the first SPEC to increase the overall level of ethics and professionalism at their school. They hope that by uniting the dental community they’ll promote lifelong thought and action in the arena of dental ethics, and foster an environment where ethical and professional behavior issues are addressed in an open, unbiased forum. Since its founding, SPEC has received recognition nationally from the ADA, American College of Dentists, and the American Society of Dental Ethics. Currently there are 21 SPEC chapters at U.S. dental schools including the UF chapter.
On behalf of the American College of Dentists Lew Walker, D.D.S., thanked several of the faculty members for their attendance and support including the college’s dean, Teresa Dolan, D.D.S., M.P.H.; SPEC Faculty Advisor Matthew Dennis, D.D.S.; and Henrietta Logan, Ph.D., and Frank Catalanotto, D.M.D., who helped establish the club.
Walker also announced that the American College of Dentists (ACD) will sponsor each of the monthly meetings during the 2009 – 2010 academic year.