Committed to the future of dentistry
When Dean’s Circle members Bob and Laura Eng reflect upon their education at the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry, one word says it all: gratitude.
“Our lives have been very rewarding,” Laura, DDS ’81, said. “We’ve appreciated the careers we’ve had and what we’ve been able to do for our patients. I think it’s because of the quality of the dental school.” Bob agrees enthusiastically.
Both had successful practices, Laura in general practice in St. Paul and Bob, DDS ’75, Orthodontics ‘78, had his offices in St. Paul and Mendota Heights. He is a Minnesota native; Laura grew up in Illinois. In their spare time, the Engs like to spend time at their cabin in the Brainerd Lakes area in Minnesota and to travel to visit their children and grandchildren.
Both of the Engs have stayed connected to the university, by attending continuing education classes to remain current in their professions, working with the alumni director to plan class reunions and attending programs sponsored by the School of Dentistry. In addition, Laura served on the School of Dentistry Alumni Society Board for six years.
They also maintain their connection to the School of Dentistry through annual philanthropy. As members of the Dean’s Circle, President’s Club, and Heritage Society, the Engs have made a long-term financial commitment to the school. “We want the school to be as good as it can possibly be,” said Bob.
“We believe our financial support enables the school to continue providing students with the highest quality education,” Laura noted. “When students graduate, they’re prepared to succeed. We also hope that in some way, it can help students lower their debt load, which can be overwhelming these days.” Bob added that it’s hard to start a practice with the debt current students accumulate. “We hope that the support provided by us and other donors improves their opportunities,” he said.
The Engs have also included the School of Dentistry in their estate planning. They consider that decision to be part of their legacy, a way they can continue to have an impact on the University beyond the length of their lives.