Graduation day

For the first time since 2019, the Graduate Orthodontics & Dentofacial Program held an in-person graduation celebration.

During the event, the Class of 2022 was celebrated, awards were presented and faculty, graduates and their partners came together for some goodwill.

Members of the graduating class described their experiences and commented on the lifelong bonds they have made. They noted that even with the cancellations of conferences and multiple lockdowns preventing most social opportunities, they managed to build an environment of encouragement and inclusion with their colleagues and promised to continue to support the current and future orthodontic students.

Remarking upon the strong and supportive network of Graduate Orthodontics alumni in Canada, Dr. Tassi encouraged the graduates and current students to embrace the opportunity to mentor current and future members of the program. He noted that alumni support has had a significant impact on the program’s success, and underscored the importance of relationships built at the student level.

All three graduates have successfully defended their theses: 

  • Jennifer Boogaards (Supervisor: Dr. Ali Tassi)
    • Torque Expression of Active and Passive Self-Ligating Orthodontic Brackets with Different Stainless Steel Wire Sizes (download)
  • Steven Dent (Supervisor: Dr. Ali Tassi)
    • The Effect of Modifications of Intermaxillary Orthodontic Elastics on Force Levels and Degradation over Time. (download tba)
  • Allison Nicholls (Supervisors: Dr. Douglas Hamilton and Dr. Ali Tassi)
    • Validation of the FlexCell®FX-5000 Tension System to Evaluate the Expression of Cementum Protein-1 in Human Periodontal Ligament Cells While Under Cyclical Orthodontic Tensile Force (download)


Dr. Nicholls and Dr. Boogaards will remain in London to prepare for the specialty board exams scheduled in June and both plan to begin their professional careers in Ontario. Dr. Dent is returning with his family to his native U.S.A to launch his professional career in Florida.

Award recipients included:

  • Class of 2022
    • Douglas and Linda Beaton Award: Allison Nicholls
    • J. Blake Memorial Award: Jennifer Boogaards
    • Bryan Smith Award in Graduate Orthodontics: Steven Dent
  • Class of 2023
    • John and Nancy Murray Award: Arpen Mahal, Sidney Mugford, and Deborah O’Reilly
  • Class of 2024
    • David C. Way Memorial Award: Sepideh Noruziaan