The American Association for Dental Research (AADR) selected University of Florida dental student KyuLim Lee as the 2016-17 Gert Quigley Fellow. Lee is currently enrolled in the DMD/PhD program and is the president of the AADR Florida Chapter Student Research Group.
As a result of her research she was selected to compete at the 2014 AADR Meeting, Johnson & Johnson Hatton Competition where she was awarded first place. She also competed in the IADR Unilever Hatton Competition in Cape Town, South Africa, and received second place. In 2012, Lee received her bachelor’s in food science and human nutrition from the UF.
“This is a wonderful achievement, both for Kyulim Lee and for our college. I believe this is the first time a UF dental student has been selected for this prestigious fellowship and we could not be more proud,” said A. Isabel Garcia, dean.
Lee has a keen interest in advocacy and said, “My research experience has taught me an important aspect of research: a cure for a disease is not discovered overnight. The discoveries result from years of incremental research. Being actively involved in both dental research and organized dentistry, I realize participating in the process of how research gets funded is critical. Research is the future of dentistry and advocating the importance of continuous funding for dental research is very important.”
The fellowship includes spending six weeks at the AADR headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia, and a year-long appointment to the AADR Government Affairs Committee (GAC). As a full voting member of the committee, fellows assist with formulating association policy as it relates to the federal budget and other legislative and regulatory activities important to dental research.
“I will be able to learn how congress is involved in the process of funding research, as well as have the opportunity to advocate and educate members of congress on the importance of dental research and research funding. My involvement in research has increased my appreciation for the high quality of dental and medical care in today’s society, so I am truly honored for this opportunity,” she said.
The Gert Quigley Public Policy Fellowship provides a unique learning experience both in Washington, D.C., and through grassroots efforts at the participant’s local university or institution. This fellowship is designed to familiarize dental school, Ph.D., or dual degree students with the federal legislative process as it relates to basic and translational dental and craniofacial research, as well as research on the oral health care delivery system. Applications for the 2017-18 Gert Quigley Public Policy Fellowship will be available in March 2017.