The latest from UWA

The second half of the year has been business as usual with several visitors engaging our students.

Dr Richard Lee joined the teaching staff as a Senior Lecturer after returning from the Cleft and Craniofacial fellowship at SickKids Hospital at the University of Toronto, which is considered to be one of the preeminent craniofacial units in the world. We are fortunate to have him on staff.

Dr Igor Lavrin travels regularly to UWA and is now a Visiting Senior Lecturer in the Department. He is responsible for a significant component of the clear aligner instruction. Dr Lavrin returned for his regular teaching commitments to the school and the students enjoyed the sessions, continuing to impress them with the keys to success with Invisalign appliances.

The Department is introducing the Spark Clear Aligner system through Ormco and Dr Vas Srivasan visited from Queensland to start the process of understanding the key elements of the technology and initiate the first group of patients into the process.

Professor Martyn Cobourne visited from Kings College London as external examiner for the 2nd year exams and both Martyn and the students enjoyed the interaction. The feedback from the Examiner is always enlightening as it enables the students to reflect and focus on the final year ahead. We really appreciate the extraordinary effort from Professor Cobourne during his short visit to UWA.

Dr Alexandra Papadopoulou will visit as part of the ASOFRE funded teaching rotation and will deliver lectures over two days and will catch up with several Sydney University graduates.

Many people are already aware of the recent passing of Dr Richard (Dick) Cook AM who was part of the UWA teaching staff for 30 years. Dick passed away soon after diagnosis and continued to come to the clinic even during chemotherapy. Dick’s enthusiasm for orthodontics and life was infectious and his skill, intellect and worldliness was an inspiration for all who were fortunate enough to know him. His presence will be sorely missed.  

Dick has had a celebrated career both in dentistry, orthodontics and the army reserve and was the State and Federal President of the ASO. In honour of his contribution to orthodontics at UWA, the Heagney Award to the graduate student deemed to have presented the most outstanding research project has now been renamed the Heagney-Cook Research Award.

Dr Andrew Savundra has taken up the teaching responsibilities that Dick held on Thursdays and Andrew is doing a wonderful job filing some big shoes.

The Orthodontic Alumni group of UWA held their regular dinner this year primarily to celebrate the significant milestones and contributions of two staff members, Mike Razza and Dick Cook who had completed 30 years of dedicated teaching. We were fortunate to have Mrs Lyn Cook at the Alumni Dinner to receive the award for 30 years of teaching on Dick’s behalf and present the Heagney-Cook Research Award to the 2018 recipient, Dr Vivien Lum.

Dr Miike Razza arrived from Texas over 30 years ago after training with Richard Ackerman in Missouri and completing his dental degree at Baylor College of dentistry. Mike has been a dedicated and valuable contributor both to the teaching of orthodontics and has served and continues to serve the ASO in a major capacity. He was the State and Federal President of the ASO.

Richard Lee, our new Alumni Convener, did a fantastic job coordinating the function.

Thanks to Rebecca Shain, our dedicated administrator/hygienist, our volunteer teaching staff and all the nursing staff which make our area such a pleasure to be part of.

Mithran Goonewardene