Recipients selected for the 2023 ADAA/DANB Scholarship

2023 ADAA/DANB Scholarship recipients

The American Dental Assistants Association (ADAA) and the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2023 ADAA/DANB Scholarship, a program that helps dental assistants reach their career goals to advance in the dental assisting profession.

The ADAA/DANB Scholarship Committee selected five recipients:

  • Kayla Palyani
  • Reena Quintanilla, CDA
  • Gabrielle Sommers, CDA
  • Ashley Tolle
  • Kaylee Tronnes

About the recipients

Kayla Palyani, of San Jose, California, is a Registered Dental Assistant who works at a small practice and has experience in pediatric, orthodontic, and aesthetic dentistry. Palyani plans to use the award to complete a temporary crown certification course at the Dental Specialties Institute.

“I would like to focus on improving and mastering my knowledge of long-term provisional restorations for my patients,” says Palyani. “My long-term goal is to be well-versed in a variety of dental assisting duties, expanding on my knowledge and skills.”

Reena Quintanilla, CDA, of San Antonio, Texas, is a dental assistant instructor in the U.S. Air Force and has held DANB Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) certification since January 2017. She plans to use the award to pursue additional DANB certifications as well as attend the 2024 OSAP Annual Conference.

“My goal is to further my dental education and leverage my knowledge to help others also achieve their goals as dental assistants,” says Quintanilla.

Gabrielle Sommers, CDA, of Hudson, Wisconsin, has almost a year of experience in dentistry and earned DANB CDA certification in August. She plans to use the award to complete a restorative expanded functions course at the University of Minnesota.

“This is the next step in my career as a dental assistant,” says Sommers. “Expanding my restorative functions knowledge will elevate my career and allow me to make an impact on more patients.”

Ashley Tolle, of Chesterton, Indiana, is a dental assisting student at Indiana University. She plans to use the award to help offset school-related costs, including tuition, books, and other expenses.

“I look forward to using the knowledge I gain not only to educate people about oral healthcare, but to be part of providing that healthcare as well,” says Tolle. “A career in dental assisting not only will be rewarding, but also extremely exciting.”

Kaylee Tronnes, of Otsego, Minnesota, is a dental assisting student at Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. She is passionate about joining the dental assisting profession and helping change patients’ lives. Tronnes plans to use the award to prepare for and take DANB exams to become certified.

“One of my biggest goals is to keep learning every day,” says Tronnes. “I know that continuing my education is an important part of dental assisting. There is so much to know, and I am excited to start my new journey.”

About the scholarship

The ADAA/DANB Scholarship is open to all ADAA members in good standing. This scholarship is awarded annually to dental assistants who demonstrate a strong commitment to career growth and lifelong learning in the dental assisting profession.