CINCINNATI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--September 26, 2013-- Procter & Gamble's Oral Health Group (Crest) and the Hispanic Dental Association Foundation (HDAF) are proud to announce the recipients of their annual scholarship program on the first day of the Hispanic Dental Association (HDA) Annual Meeting, which brings together the largest gathering of U.S. Hispanic oral health professionals. These scholarships were awarded to 16 entry-level U.S. Hispanic students who have been accepted into an accredited dental, dental hygiene, dental assisting, or dental technician programs. Each of these individuals was judged on their demonstration of scholastic achievement, community service, leadership skills and commitment to improving health in the Hispanic community.
"We are proud to have partners, like Crest, who help us honor these worthwhile individuals who will go on to positively influence the Hispanic community," said Sarita Arteaga, DMD, MAGD, President of the HDAF. "As we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, it is only fitting that we put the spotlight on the next generation of dental professional leaders who are already making an impact in their communities."
To be considered for the scholarship, each of the winners had to fill out an application that spoke to their community service, leadership, extracurricular activities, honors, work experience and write an essay on they career goals. Through the essay portion, the winners were asked why they wanted to be a dental professional, how they will help to improve their community and what the scholarship would do to help them in attaining these goals.
"I'm excited and appreciative that Crest and the HDAF have awarded me the Procter & Gamble scholarship to advance my career in dentistry," said Christian V. Paez, P&G scholarship recipient. "As an U.S. Hispanic, I want to change the oral health perceptions in my community and this scholarship will aid in reaching that goal."
In addition to providing scholarships to the next generation of Hispanic Dental professionals, Crest and the HDAF have set out to correct misperceptions U.S. Hispanics face when it comes to their oral health. This partnership assesses the state of oral health of the Hispanic community -- securing data that has been publicized and shared with key stakeholders, consumer and media. This year, during Hispanic Heritage Month and beyond, both Crest and the HDAF are focusing on the next generation of Hispanic dental professionals, not only by awarding these 16 scholarship winners, but by partnering with Univision at their annual Feria Es El Momento, on October 5, to teach Hispanic families about the importance of oral care and how to become a dental professional.
"At Crest, we feel it is imperative to continue this partnership with the HDAF in support of the U.S. Hispanic community," said Wanda Vides, Assistant Brand Manager for Crest. "Through our 'Hispanics Open Up About Oral Health Care' survey, we found that approximately six in 10 Hispanics feel that a higher representation of Spanish-speaking and Hispanic dental professional would help them 'a lot' in achieving and maintaining better oral health(1) . This is why we want to help foster the next generation of dental professionals through this scholarship program."
For more information about the HDAF and the Procter & Gamble scholarship, please visit, HDASSOC.org. For more information about Crest and its products, please follow #FamiliaCrest or visit CrestComplete.com.
Recipients of this year's scholarship include the following: Alejandro Barerra, Laredo, TX; Aliana Caridad, Pompano Beach, FL; Alina O'Brien, New York, NY; Ana Calles, Westlake, OH; Ana De La Torre-Ordaz, Portland, OR; Andres Villalobos, Minneapolis, MN; Antonio Quintanilla, Houston, TX; Ashley Elliot, Hillsboro, OR; Britta Martinez, Chandler, AZ; Christian Paez, Laredo, TX; Franco Cevasco, Pflugerville, TX; Jose Mendoza, Pasco, WA; Paula Lee, Wilsonvile, OR; Penelope Cornelio, Lawrence, MA; and Vanessa Moore, Baltimore, MD.