Like many other medical disciplines, dentistry is dominated by male practitioners. According to the "Journal of the American Dental Association," in 2005, only 14 percent of practicing dentists were women. By 2020, that number is expected to climb to nearly 29 percent, still a small percentage. To help encourage more women to enter the dentistry field and offer financial incentive to help pay for the large expense involved in attending dental school, a number of sources offer dental scholarships specifically for women.
Dr. Bessie Elizabeth Delaney Award
Sponsored by the National Dental Association, the Dr. Bessie Elizabeth Delaney Award honors Dr. Bessie Elizabeth Delaney, a pioneer in the civil rights movement and former dentist and author. The $10,000 scholarship is open to female dental students pursuing postgraduate dental degrees. Applicants must be members of the National Dental Association and United States citizens. The application process requires each candidate to submit a letter of request for consideration of the award, curriculum vitae or resume, nomination from the student’s program director and two letters of recommendation. Applications may be submitted online through the National Dental Association website.
Eleanor J. Bushee Memorial Award
Created in honor of Eleanor J. Bushee, a president of the American Association of Women Dentists, the Eleanor J. Bushee Memorial Award is funded and administered by the American Association of Women Dentists. The scholarship rewards an outstanding senior female dental student who has demonstrated leadership qualities and high academic merit. Applicants must be members of the American Association of Women Dentists and winners are chosen by the student’s school dean or faculty adviser. Multiple awards are given out each year with the amount varying each year depending on the funding the organization receives.
Enid A. Neidle Scholar-in-Residence Program
The Enid A. Neidle Scholar-in-Residence Program awards tuition assistance to a female dental faculty member to attend a three-month educational program at the American Dental Education Association offices in Washington, D.C. Program attendees learn about issues facing female dental educators and other dental issues pertaining to women. The $6,000 stipend covers the three-month program, including travel and living expenses. Applicants must be current dental school faculty members and American Dental Education Association members. The scholarship application should include a personal essay describing how the program will benefit the candidate in her career goals.
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research Short-Term Training Awards
Federally funded and sponsored by the American Dental Association, the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research Short-Term Training Awards provide scholarship money to female and minority dental students. The scholarships provide money to students to obtain research experience while enrolled in dental school. In return for the monthly stipend, dental students agree to work for the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research for a period of time following graduation. Eligible students must be current dental school students and United States citizens.