September 20, 2018

The DALE Foundation selects winners of the 2018 Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship

The DALE Foundation, the official affiliate of the Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. (DANB), is pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship. This prestigious scholarship helps oral healthcare professionals to pursue their professional development goals and supports their mentorship activities.

This year, after receiving more than 70 applications, the Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship Committee selected four winners based on their commitment to the oral healthcare profession and mentorship experiences.

2018 Scholarship Winners

Shawnee Delo, of Richmond, Virginia, works as a dental assistant at Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of Dentistry. She plans to apply the scholarship funds toward earning DANB’s Certified Dental Assistant certification, as well as toward registering for Spanish-language courses. “I strongly feel that completion of these classes will greatly benefit me in the workplace and help Spanish-speaking families feel more comfortable knowing they can communicate in their native language during their visit,” Delo says.

Elizabeth Polak-Silva, CDA, of Bristol, Connecticut, works at Kids Dental Care in Bristol. She aspires to take the Dental Admission Test (DAT) and apply to dental schools. Polak-Silva plans to use her scholarship to offset the application costs, as well as to fund a DAT preparation course. “I share Liz Koch’s belief in lifelong learning,” she says. “That is why I want to further my education and become a dentist. My dream, as a future dentist, is to organize dental mission trips and encourage other dental professionals to join me.”

Robynn Rixse, CDA, of Landisville, Pennsylvania, will apply her scholarship to her tuition at Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania, where she is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration. Rixse is the 2018-2019 president-elect of the American Dental Assistants Association (ADAA), as well as an ADAA Fellow and Master. She also aspires to join the American Association of Dental Office Management (AADOM) and work toward becoming an AADOM Fellow, which includes the completion of DALE Foundation office management courses, among other requirements. “Education has always been a priority for me,” she says.

Sheila Seevers, CDA, of Newberg, Oregon, is currently instructing dental assistants at Portland Community College on a part-time basis. She aspires to transition into teaching full-time by earning her master’s degree in career and technical education through Concordia University’s online program. Seevers will apply her scholarship to her tuition for this online program. “Like Liz Koch, I too strongly value continuing education in whatever field one happens to be passionate about,” Seevers says. “I have a very strong belief that learning is a never-ending process.”

These winners will receive between $250 and $1,000 and three continuing education products of their choice from the DALE Foundation.

Additionally, the scholarship committee named five finalists: 

  • Jennifer Guidetti, CDA
  • Jennifer Lizotte, CDA
  • Jodie Smith-Mcintosh, CDA
  • Addy Sorensen
  • Rachel Wetzsteon, CDA


About the Scholarship

The DALE Foundation launched the Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship in 2014 to honor the late Liz Koch, who served as Chief Operating Officer of DANB and the DALE Foundation before her untimely passing in 2011. This memorial scholarship commemorates her many years of service to dental assisting and embodies her belief in the power of lifelong learning.

Information about the 2019 Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship will be available in spring 2019. Individuals and organizations interested in donating to the Liz Koch Memorial Scholarship can donate online or mail checks to the DALE Foundation, 444 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 970, Chicago, IL 60611. Your contribution directly supports dental assistants and other oral healthcare professionals.

Please visit the DALE Foundation Scholarships webpage for information about the winners.

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