An Introduction to the GSDM Family: ASDA Connects “Big Brothers and Sisters” with First-Year Siblings
On September 17, 2012, members of the Boston University Chapter of the American Student Dental Association (ASDA) welcomed first-year DMD students, with great warmth and enthusiasm, to the organization’s Big Brother and Big Sister (BB/BS) event, held in Hiebert Lounge.
During the annual event, first years are paired up with second, third, and fourth year “big brothers” and “big sisters,” who have volunteered to serve as an informational resource as they embark on their first year of study at the Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine (GSDM). Approximately 60 first years and 60 second, third, and fourth years signed up.
This year’s BB/BS Program organizers—Amrita Sandhu, Emma Lattouf, Antonio Macedo, Keely Matheson, Jessica Metcalfe, and Marissa Kobewka, all DMD 15—set the stage for a successful event. In addition to meeting their generous and experienced big brothers and sisters, new students arrived to boxes of pizza and an entertaining program format. In the style of speed dating, the students first ate their pizza at one table and, later, they were directed to find their big and little brothers and sisters and sit at another table to spend some time getting to know one another.
Amrita Sandhu DMD 15, one of the organizers, said about the ASDA BB/BS Program: “Throughout my first year I was constantly asking my upperclassmen anything and everything that I needed to know and it is fair to say that their advice, help, and support made the year much more manageable. I wanted to be a part of the Big Brother/Big Sister event to promote communication and cohesiveness between the DMD 16s and their upperclassmen. Not only will this help them throughout their first year, but it also sets an example for the years to come.”
Fellow organizer Emma Lattouf DMD 15 said, “I wanted to get involved in the Big Brother/Sister event because I was so grateful for the help that I got from the class above me. Before each exam and each summative I was given advice and encouragement that really made things easier. I think it’s important that the classes help one another and remain as a unified entity. I hope that we can encourage the first years to value this so that they can do the same for the 2017 class, and so on.”
Proud of the initiative and sense of community demonstrated by the GSDM students, Assistant Dean of Students Dr. Joseph Calabrese said, “Our students made a special effort this year to create a more fun and interesting event for all involved. I could not be more pleased with the outcome.”
Dr. Calabrese continued, “Based on the energy level and the number of participants in the Hiebert lounge I would consider the event a huge success. My compliments go to the planning committee. They told me they would make it fun and interesting and they delivered.”