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TODAY news for Thursday, August 24, 2006

School of Dentistry news

Dr. Goodacre receives first Kenneth Wical Award for Excellence in Prosthodontics

Charles Goodacre, DDS, MSD (left), is congratulated by Kenneth Wical, DDS, MS, upon receiving the first Kenneth Wical Award.
Charles Goodacre, DDS, MSD (left), is congratulated by Kenneth Wical, DDS, MS, upon receiving the first Kenneth Wical Award. Each year, the award will be presented to a “moral examplar” prosthodontist.
Charles Goodacre, DDS, MSD, has been presented with the first Kenneth Wical award for Excellence in Prosthodontics. The award was created by Tony Daher, DDS, director of the advanced prosthodontics program, and was awarded during the recent advanced education program in prosthodontics banquet, held in San Bernardino at the Castaway Restaurant.

The award is named for Kenneth Wical, DDS, MS.

After graduating from the University of Southern California with his DDS degree in 1956, Dr. Wical spent two years in the U.S. Public Health Service fulfilling his military draft obligation. He worked with Native Americans in northern Utah and Nevada. Flying between the clinics was the fulfillment of a boyhood dream to be a missionary pilot.

In 1958, Lloyd Baum, DMD, MS, professor emeritus, contacted Dr. Wical, and he joined the School of Dentistry faculty, working for three years as a restorative dentistry instructor. Dr. Wical left LLU in 1961 to serve native Alaskans in Barrow, Alaska—one of two doctors assigned to cover emergencies. He traveled by dog sled and piloted a plane to remote villages to treat patients.

In 1962, Dr. Wical was invited  to set up a dental assisting and a dental lab curriculum at Southwestern Adventist College (SAC; now Southwestern Adventist University), in Keene, Texas. In 1964, he was asked to substitute for a college science teacher at SAC. That substitution turned into one-and-a-half years teaching college and high school general science, biology, and chemistry.

Dr. Wical believes these experiences were providential, preparing him for one of the most fulfilling times in his career.

LLU had received a federal grant to open Monument Valley Medical Center in Utah to serve the Navajos, and Dr. Wical was the only available dentist at LLU who  met the grant criteria.

From 1966 to 1970, Dr. Wical oversaw construction and running of the clinic, and supervising LLUSD seniors who spent six weeks at the clinic.

Then one year of private practice in Moab, Utah, was followed by another call from LLUSD to teach removable prosthodontics. Before teaching the subject, in 1971, Dr. Wical requested specialty training and attended the University of Washington, where he earned an MS degree in prosthodontics.

Since 1973, he has served in many capacities—as clinic director, chair, and didactic instructor. In the early 1970s, the removable prosthodontics department was the second largest department and was later incorporated into the restorative department.

Dr. Wical is a member of the  Academy of Prosthodontics. His aim has remained consistent: to treat patients, students, and colleagues with respect and as children of God. He says: “I do not consider any of what I have done to be noble or sacrificial. I never thought that I was making a sacrifice at the time; I was doing what I enjoyed.” His unfailing kindness to students and patients in lab and on clinic is a continual motivation to learn and an inspiration to treat colleagues and patients with the utmost respect and understanding. His gentle authority, humility, and exceptional ability to teach have earned the devotion and respect of students and faculty alike.

By Nancy Yuen

TODAY news for Thursday, August 24, 2006