Two Faculty Recognized with Spencer N. Frankl Award for Excellence in Teaching
Drs. Monica Ann Pessina from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Hesham M. Nouh from the Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine (GSDM) received the Spencer N. Frankl Award for Excellence in Teaching. They were honored at 2018 GSDM Commencement Convocation on Friday, May 18.
Dr. Pessina received her Bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy from Boston University’s Sargent College in 1990. Her clinical work as an occupational therapist at Massachusetts General Hospital and as the Director of Rehabilitation at Shriners Hospital for Children resulted a deep interest in the anatomical sciences. In addition, these teaching hospitals inspired her to pursue teaching and academic research.
After completing a Master’s Degree in Education from Northeastern University, Dr. Pessina earned a PhD in Anatomy & Neurobiology from BUSM in 2005 and soon joined the faculty of the BUSM Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology. Dr. Pessina holds the rank of Assistant Professor and teaches numerous courses for medical and graduate students where she consistently receives excellent feedback for her teaching skills and compassion for her students. She also serves as a mentor in the department’s Vesalius program which trains students to be educators in the Anatomical Sciences. Dr. Pessina participates in ongoing research investigating the recovery of motor function after cortical injury and has numerous research articles to her credit. As a continuation of her clinical work, Dr. Pessina has travelled to China and Taiwan to advocate for burn survivors and educate health care professionals in the best practices in burn rehabilitation.
Dr. Pessina began teaching at GSDM in 2005 and truly enjoys her collaborations with the GSDM faculty, staff and students. At GSDM, Dr. Pessina teaches Histology in the Anatomical Sciences I course and serves as the Course Director for Anatomical Sciences II, Gross Anatomy, both DMD I courses. In recognition of her excellence in teaching, in 2015, Dr. Pessina received the GSDM Proctor and Gamble Outstanding Faculty Award for Basic Sciences. In addition, she has presented with colleagues at the Annual Session of the American Dental Education Association and she serves on several committees at BUSM and GSDM including Chair, BUSM Department of Anatomy Vesalius Mentored Practicum Committee; GSDM Promotions Committee; GSDM Committee of Directors of the Biomedical Sciences; and GSDM Advisory Search Committee for a Chair, Department of General Dentistry. She is also a member of the American Association of Anatomists and the American Dental Education Association.
Dr. Pessina is known to her students for her engaging style, organization and genuine excitement about the topics she teaches. She reinforces the clinical relevance of the Anatomical Sciences by incorporating current events and unique cases from dental and anatomical literature into her lectures. In order to appeal to a variety of learning styles, she also uses hands-on activities like making clay models in class or having students transform their classroom into a larger than life replica of the region they are studying. Every day, she is grateful to the mentors that have guided her, her teaching team that brings out her best, and the students who continue to inspire and educate her.
Dr. Hesham M. Nouh received his dental education at the October 6 University, Egypt, earning a Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) in 2006. From 2006-2007, he was a General Dentistry Resident at October 6 University Hospital where upon completion, he practiced General Dentistry at the El Nada Clinics, Giza Egypt and served as a Teaching Assistant in the Department of Restorative Dentistry at MSA University, Egypt. In 2009, Dr. Nouh settled in the United States where he completed a Doctor of Science (DSc) in Oral Biology at GDSM, completing his degree in 2012. Dr. Nouh finished his education at GSDM in 2015, when he earned his Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies (CAGS) in Prosthodontics and a Master of Science in Dentistry (MSD) in Biomaterials.
Upon completing his CAGS and MSD, Dr. Nouh was appointed Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of General Dentistry at the School in 2015. In this position he served as Director for multiple predoctoral courses taught to DMD and DMD AS students, such as Occlusion, Fixed Prosthodontics and as Supervisor for Restorative Faculty in the Department of General Dentistry. He also continues to teach Prosthodontic/Restorative Dentistry to DMD III and DMD IV students in the Predoctoral Patient Treatment Center.
In 2016, Dr. Nouh was appointed Director of Predoctoral Prosthodontics and Restorative Dentistry at GSDM. In this role, he serves as the Course Director for three different courses, as well as the supervisor for restorative faculty in the Department of General Dentistry. In conjunction with Dr. Neal Fleisher, Dr. Nouh developed and Co-directs the pre-clinical digital implantology course now required of all DMD II and DMD AS I students; the first of its kind in the country. Throughout his time at GSDM, Dr. Nouh has demonstrated a true dedication to shaping the future of dentistry by challenging conventional wisdom in the dental field using new techniques and technologies; and providing an environment where greatness can happen for both students and faculty.
Dr. Nouh is deeply invested in the future of GSDM, which is evident in his commitments outside of the classroom. He is a member of the DMD III / DMD AS I Student Promotions Committee; the Digital Dentistry Committee; the Applied Strategic Planning Committee; and the Clinical Working Group, Design and Development Committee for the GSDM Addition & Renovation Construction project. He is also the Co-Chair of the Quality Committee, the Materials Committee, and the Implant Committee; and the Chair of Quality Control. Dr. Nouh is also an Alternate GSDM member on the BU Faculty Council, and a member of the Curriculum Management Task Force, Instrument Committee and Student Government Committee, as well as the Faculty Advisor for both the Muslim Student Association and the Student National Dental Association.
Throughout his career, Dr. Nouh has received many recognitions including induction into the International College of Dentists in October 2017. He has also been honored within GSDM; as Clinical Instructor of the Year in 2016 and 2017 by the DMD Classes of 2016 and 2017 and as Clinical Instructor of the Year in 2016 by the DMD AS Class of 2016; and for the Best Faculty Abstract at the 2016 BUMC Dr. John McCahan Education Day.
Dr. Nouh is an active member of the larger dental community, serving as Secretary of the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Board of Prosthodontics. He also holds membership in the International College of Dentists, the American Dental Association, the Massachusetts Dental Society, the American College of Prosthodontists, and the American Dental Education Association. He also serves as a Reviewer for the American College of Prosthodontists Journal of Prosthodontics.