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Dental Student Receives Governor's Service Award

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Written by Adam Zewe

Maryam Qayumi, DDS '17, has been honored by Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley for her dedication to community service. Qayumi received a Governor's Service Award during a ceremony in Annapolis on Nov. 4. The annual award honors individuals who engage in meaningful volunteer service that makes a measurable difference in the community.

Qayumi was honored for her participation in Community Health Corps Maryland, which is a component of the national service organization AmeriCorps. As part of the health corps, she spent the previous year volunteering full-time in the case management department at Chase Brexton Health Care in Columbia, Md. Qayumi helped new patients navigate the health care system and assisted them with applications for state health insurance programs. During her year of service, she provided case management services for 871 clients and enrolled 586 new patients in health insurance programs. "It was very rewarding to help patients get the health care that they needed. Many patients didn't even know these programs existed," states Qayumi.

During her health corps service, she also volunteered in the dental department at Chase Brexton. Qayumi helped underserved dental patients access community resources. She also supported outreach events at Howard County elementary schools. Qayumi assisted dentists and hygienists in providing sealants and fluoride treatments for students. She felt a strong desire to help the young students because of her own childhood experiences with dentistry.

Qayumi, who was born with a cleft lip and palate, received care from a team of oral and maxillofacial surgeons frequently during her childhood. Her dental care providers became her role models. "I received great dental care when I was a child and I was very lucky for that. I want to be able to give that same level of care to kids, especially in community health care settings where they may not have access to dental care," Qayumi says.

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