Jennifer Gawthrop of Hurricane, W.Va., a third-year dental student in the West Virginia University School of Dentistry, has been awarded a $2,500 American Dental Education Association/Johnson and Johnson Healthcare Products Preventive Dentistry Scholarship to apply toward her tuition and fees for pre-doctoral dental study.

Gawthrop was one of 12 dental students in the country to receive the scholarship, which is given to pre-doctoral students who have demonstrated academic excellence in preventive dentistry. She is the first WVU student to receive this award.

“I’ve always tried to do things outside of what has been required of me,” she said. “This award is really important. It’s recognition of something I’ve worked really hard for.”

Gawthrop helped develop an oral health component for MUSHROOM (Multidisciplinary Un-Sheltered Homeless Relief Outreach of Morgantown), has worked with the Mountaineer Boys and Girls Club and is currently organizing a 5K run /walk to benefit “Give Back a Smile,” which assists victims of intimate partner violence.

“When you look at Jennifer’s record in terms of her outstanding community service initiatives above and beyond what is expected of students enrolled in the pre-doctoral program, she was an obvious choice for this award,” Christina DeBiase, Ed.D., associate dean for academic affairs, said.

Gawthrop was recognized at the American Dental Education Association’s annual meeting on March 20 in Orlando, Fla.

Earlier this year, she received the Golden Student Star Award from WVU’s Gold Humanism Honor Society. The award is presented to WVU Health Sciences students who go out of their way to help others. She also recently received the bronze-level President’s Volunteer Service Award by the WVU Center for Civic Engagement. The awards were created by the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation to honor Americans who are dedicated volunteers and encourage the people around them to get involved.

She is the daughter of Allen and Cathy Gawthrop of Hurricane.

Photo identifications: (left to right) Elizabeth Roberts, D.D.S., director of scientific and professional affairs for oral care at Johnson and Johnson Co.; Jennifer Gawthrop, third-year dental student in the WVU School of Dentistry; Leo Rouse, D.D.S., immediate past president of the American Dental Education Association