A UF College of Dentistry tradition that started following the unforgettable events on September 11, 2001, continues 15 years later in Gainesville.
The DMD class of 2020 held the college’s 15th Code of Conduct ceremony December 9, where all 92 members of the freshman class signed a code of conduct which they created, pledging to abide by the code through the duration of dental school and in their service beyond.
The Code of Conduct tradition, which started as an informal exercise in 2001, grew out of the Ethics & Professionalism course and became a formal process each of the years following.
Distraught by the haunting events of 9/11, the class engaged in a discussion with their professor regarding how stress can adversely affect decisions and judgements; how important it is to document core values and beliefs, attest to them and refer to those values to make the right decisions both personally and professionally, even when fear and stress affect a normal sense of justice and judgement.
Now, a code for each of the four current classes adorns the wall on the third floor of the College of Dentistry each year.
“As a dentist, member of this faculty and as dean of this college, I am deeply proud to know this group of students has dedicated themselves to being the kind of class, the kind of dentist and the kind of person who embodies the values represented in this Code of Conduct,” Isabel Garcia, D.D.S., M.P.H., remarked.
“There is no human being on earth that doesn’t have a value system,” Larry Cook, D.M.D., M.S., added in addressing the class of 2020. “When you focus on these values, they make you proud, so much so you might speak to other people about what matters to you. We can’t hide – they become us, who we are, our character and it shows up in every part of your life.”
Words and phrases such as “diversity,” “integrity,” and “support, motivate and uplift each other” lace the class of 2020 Code of Conduct that this group of students will live by as they embark upon their dental education and prepare for professional careers of service after graduation. Family and love, health, integrity and honesty, and personal growth are all key points of emphasis for the class of 2020.
Class of 2020 Code of Conduct Preamble
We, the University of Florida College of Dentistry Class of 2020, keenly recognize the deep honor inherent in being chosen to represent this profession, and stand in awe of the sheer human caliber brought forth by our class. Though we encompass an incredible diversity of cultures, religions, and languages, we are united by the common threads of love and deep commitment to service. We strive to uphold moral and professional excellence, and continually challenge and encourage each other as we work diligently to deliver the best quality of care to our future patients. The values below are the honest reflections of our hearts and the guiding forces through which we humbly commit to carry ourselves, both within and beyond the realm of Dentistry, and ultimately leave our mark on society.