Mutreja joins AADOCR MIND the Future cohort

Headshot of Mutreja Isha

Isha Mutreja, PhD, MSc, assistant professor of biomaterials, was named a member of the 2023-2024 cohort of American Association for Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Research MIND the Future program. 

Supported by a National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, Mentoring an Inclusive Network for a Diverse Workforce of the Future “is expected to build a vibrant and inclusive community of investigators whose participation is vital to advancing dental, oral and craniofacial research and improving the oral health of our nation,” according to the website.

The fellowship aims to promote diversity and establish mentorship and connections across clinicians and scientists.  Mutreja is one of ten members of the incoming cohort. 

Mutreja is a researcher in the Minnesota Dental Research Center for Biomaterials and Biomechanics, where she studies hard and soft tissue regeneration. She decided to apply for the program after being encouraged by several alumni of the program including it Bruno Lima, DDS, PhD, assistant professor of basic sciences and alumnus of the program. 

“He encouraged me and introduced me to members of his cohort, who really resonated with where I was in my own journey,” she explained. “Learning to navigate the academic system can be challenging—whether it’s grant writing, work-life balance, networking or developing realistic goals. I knew this program could help me build my skills.” 

Mutreja was ecstatic to be accepted into the cohort. She looks forward to getting to know other early-career investigators, networking and receiving support from mentors. 

“I’m excited to build up a support network of my own,” she explained. “Everyone is facing the same challenges, to different extents. I am excited to share my experiences with them, and we can learn from one another’s perspectives.” 

In particular, Mutreja looks forward to working from her mentor, an international dentist with a similar career path to Mutreja’s own. “Learning from her own journey and getting to know her will be inspiring.”

Mutreja is thrilled to be part of this program, and to become part of a network of program mentees and alumni working toward scientific excellence. 

“It’s an amazing program run by great people who are here to support you,” she said. “You get the chance to interact with your own cohort and previous ones, and hopefully this will give me the chance to gain a support network, but also a group of prospective collaborators.”