USC University of Southern California

Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC


The Consummate Educator

Nissim Benbassat ’03, PROS ’12 BY JOHN HOBBS MA ’14 In a sense, Nissim Benbassat joined the “family business” the day he became an Ostrow faculty member.  His father, Maxim Nissim Benbassat, has been a USC faculty member for more than 20 years, teaching anesthesiology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. It was […]

The Geriatric Care Advocate

Lisa Hou ’08, DDS ’12, MS ’17  BY JAMIE WETHERBE MA ’04 “I love geriatric dentistry, and there really is a growing need for this [service],” Lisa Hou says.  As the director of USC’s Mobile Dental Clinic at Hollenbeck Palms, a nonprofit retirement community, Hou provides specialized care for elderly patients and prepares the next […]

The Back-to-Basics Oral Surgeon

Kyle Yip MD ’13, OMFS ’16 BY JOHN HOBBS MA ’14 Assistant Professor of Clinical Dentistry Kyle Yip wants Ostrow’s oral and maxillofacial surgery (OMFS) residents to graduate feeling like their educations are incomplete. “I want to prepare them for a career of lifelong learning,” Yip clarifies. “Ostrow trains really great clinicians, but I think […]

The ASPID-DDS Curriculum Uniter

Cheryl Park ’07, DDS ’13, PROS ’16 BY YASMINE PEZESHKPOUR MCM ’16 Cheryl Park came to Ostrow to become a prosthodontist. By the time she graduated, she had a slightly different vision for her future.  Citing a handful of influential faculty members (Winston Chee PROS ’86; George Cho DDS ’87, PROS ’90; and Tae Kim […]

The Drill-Less Dreamer

Jin-Ho Phark BY JOHN HOBBS MA ’14 Jin-Ho Phark dreams of a day when dentists use their drills a lot less often.  The assistant professor of clinical dentistry aims to change the way future generations of dental professionals think of caries from a condition to be repaired after a cavity has formed to something to […]

The Confidence Builder

Gelareh Ronaghi PROS ’14 BY YASMINE PEZESHKPOUR MCM ’16 Gelareh Ronaghi took a career in academia to give back to future dental professionals the way her instructors had once done for her.   “I believe teaching is a way of making the world a better place, and I wanted to be a part of that,” […]

The Cell Whisperer

Jiang “John” Zhong MS ’02, PhD ’03 BY JOHN HOBBS MA ’14 If ever there comes a time when scientists “grow” transplant organs using a patient’s own stem cells, it could be a result of some of the research currently being conducted by Jiang “John” Zhong. The assistant professor who joined Ostrow in 2014 is […]

The Restoration Specialist

Alena Knezevic BY JAMIE WETHERBE MA ’04 An expert in the field of dental composite photopolymerization, Clinical Assistant Professor Alena Knezevic brings a worldly perspective to her research and teaching techniques.  While working in Croatia, Knezevic was among the first to develop a specific method called digital holographic interferometry for measuring how composite resin materials […]

The Master Craftsman

Neimar Sartori BY YASMINE PEZESHKPOUR MCM ’16 Neimar Sartori always knew he wanted more than a clinical career. “I was always curious about why something was a certain way and why some people use certain techniques over others,” the assistant professor of clinical dentistry says. Sartori realized his inquisitive nature made a career in academia […]

The Cellular Crusader

Jian Xu  BY JAMIE WETHERBE MA ’04 Assistant Professor Jian Xu is making a big impact on the dental world by studying our cell’s smallest parts.  Her work on chromatin modification examines how enzymes methylate proteins — basically, how cells turn signals on and off, like a light switch, and how this impacts chronic diseases.  […]