Little Known Black History Fact: Tera Poole, U of Maryland School of Dentistry’s First Black Valedictorian

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Tera Poole, a student at the University of Maryland’s School of Dentistry, made a historic mark earlier this month among her graduating class. She became the school’s first Black valedictorian in its entire existence.

Poole, who delivered the school’s commencement speech, knew that she was among the top students of her class but did not know she’d be named its top achiever. After processing the significance of the moment, Poole realized the weight of the moment during an interview with MIC.

The newly-minted doctor of dentistry acknowledged that the former Baltimore College of Dental Surgery wouldn’t even have admitted her when it was established in 1840. Poole was one of nine other Black women at the school and added that the group banded together to support the goals of one another.

Poole also shared in her interview that she wants to become the “Dr. Oz” of dentistry, and will be reestablishing her “Dr. Tera” brand and blog.

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