Dental Hygiene Holds White Coat Ceremony

Image 2016 Dental Hygiene White Coat Ceremony Students who took part in the 2016 USD Department of Dental Hygiene White Coat Ceremony.

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota Department of Dental Hygiene held its traditional white coat ceremony on Aug. 22 in Farber Hall on the USD campus.

Although the ceremony began long ago in the medical profession, many other disciplines have adopted this tradition, including dentistry and dental hygiene. For all health professions, the white coat ceremony acknowledges an individual’s entry into a formal professional program and signifies the beginning of a lifelong career of service to others. The white coat symbolically denotes professionalism, compassion, trust, and knowledge.

The USD Dental Hygiene Department accepts 32 students each year. The 2016 entering class hails from the South Dakota cities of Sioux Falls, Watertown, Colman, Parkston, Elk Point, Dell Rapids, Aberdeen, Groton, Rapid City, Alexandria, White, Howes, Huron, Hazel, Sturgis, Mound City and Lennox as well as communities in northwest Iowa, southwest Minnesota, northeast Nebraska and Oklahoma.

Download an image of the 2016 class.


USD’s School of Health Sciences is a national leader in interprofessional health sciences education. South Dakota’s comprehensive School of Health Sciences develops scholars, practitioners and leaders in health and human services, including addiction counselors, dental hygienists, health science practitioners, medical laboratory scientists, nurses, occupational therapists, physical therapists, physician assistants, public health practitioners and social workers.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 205 undergraduate and 73 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 17:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 17 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Michael Ewald
USD News