Hastings named Director of Division of Community Outreach and Engagement

Headshot of Angela Hastings on a School of Dentistry branded background

Angela Hastings, DMD, has been appointed as Director for the Division of Community Outreach and Engagement at the School of Dentistry.

Hastings graduated from Hamline University with honors and received her DMD from the Western University of Health Sciences College of Dental Medicine. She was the Dental Director of Greater Portland Health and trained dental students at the University of New England before joining the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry in 2018 as an adjunct clinical professor, serving as clinical lead at East Side Family Clinic from 2019 until her appointment as Interim Director in 2022. Hastings has also worked as an associate dentist in private practice, and continues to serve as a consultant for multiple teledentistry companies and nonprofit organizations to increase access to dental care for underserved patients.

Hastings’s appointment was announced in an email to the School of Dentistry community on April 6, following a search chaired by Naty Lopez, PhD, associate professor of dental public health.

“It is with excitement toward the future that I announce this appointment,” said Sheila Riggs, DDS, DMSc, Chair of the Department of Primary Dental Care in the email announcement. “As Division Director, Dr. Hastings will lead our outreach rotations and launch the curriculum in new directions as the division enhances their mission for community engagement.”

Alongside the new appointment comes a change in the name of the division previously known as the Division of Outreach. Reenvisioned to better align with the school’s mission-broadened strategic plan, the Division of Community Outreach and Engagement will seek further integration of the School of Dentistry within the community.

“I am confident that Dr. Hastings’s leadership and vision will continue to advance the quality, reputation and impact of the division through this transition,” said Riggs.

Hastings was appointed Interim Director in late 2022, taking over the role from Susan Buck-Wischmeier, DDS. Buck-Wischmeier led the division ably since before and through the pandemic, and she will continue as a part-time dentist on the Mobile Dental Clinic.

"I am honored to be chosen as the new Director of the Division of Community Outreach and Engagement,” said Hastings. “Outreach rotations are consistently noted as a favorite part of dental school for our students, and it is exciting to carry on the torch of leading such a well-developed community-based educational program. With the change in division title, I am looking forward to the opportunity to expand our clinical partnerships, inter- and intra-professional collaborations, and oral health promotion opportunities for all students."

We congratulate Hastings and welcome her to this new role.