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The ADA Foundation works to improve the public's oral health through a variety of grants, scholarships, and awards that support oral health education programs. Please see the below program descriptions and guidelines for complete information, and check this website for updates.

Dr. David Whiston Leadership Program

Purpose: The ADA Foundation Dr. David Whiston Leadership Program annually provides two $5,000 awards - the Dr. David Whiston Leadership Award and the Henry Schein Cares Dr. David Whiston Leadership Award - to deserving individuals who have demonstrated leadership skills in efforts aimed at improving the oral health of the public. The award funds are designed to cover the costs associated with attending a leadership development program offered by the American Management Association, or a leadership program approved by the ADA Foundation. 

Application Period: The 2020 application period has not yet been determined. Please visit this website in October, 2019 for more information.

Eligibility Requirements: The minimum qualifications for this award include:

  • Applicant must have earned or be in the process of earning a D.D.S. or D.M.D. degree from a dental school accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation;
  • Applicant must be either a dental student, graduate student, or resident enrolled in an accredited dental school education program, or an early-career dentist under the age of 40 or in his/her first five years of professional work following residency;
  • Applicant must have held a position within dentistry in which he/she has demonstrated leadership skills, such as, but not limited to:
    • The ability to create a vision;
    • Effective communications skills sufficient to motivate others to achieve that vision;
    • The ability to establish a strong team concept;
    • A focus on utilizing those traits for the greater good; and
    • Participation in activities which advance the oral health of the public and/or the underserved.

Dollar Amount and Number of Awards: Two awards of $5,000 annually, one of which is provided through a generous donation from Henry Schein Cares.

Dental Student Scholarship Program

See the announcement of the ADA Foundation Dental Student Scholarship recipients on the ADAF Facebook page!

Purpose: The ADA Foundation Dental Student Scholarship Program is designed to recognize dental students who are strong academically and who demonstrate outstanding promise in leadership, public service/volunteerism, and/or research. The scholarships are available to all eligible dental students (must be a U.S. citizen) enrolled in accredited U.S. dental schools.

Application Period: The application period will open in January, 2020. Dates may be subject to change. Visit this website in late 2019 for updated information.    

Eligibility Requirements: In order to be eligible for consideration for these scholarships, an applicant must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen;
  • At the time of application, be enrolled full time in the second year of study in a U.S. CODA-accredited dental school;
  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.4 based on a 4.0 scale (Pass (P) or Satisfactory (S) academics are equivalent); and
  • Demonstrate financial need.

Dollar Amount: The ADA Foundation will award scholarships of up to $20,000 each.

Education Through Give Kids A Smile®

The ADA Foundation’s Give Kids A Smile program helps educate tens of thousands of children and their families on the importance of good oral health to overall health. Visit the Give Kids A Smile page.

ADA Foundation Impact Report cover

Download this brochure to read about how the ADA Foundation is working to improve the oral health of the public.