Between a doctorate in public health sciences with a concentration in health management and policy and doctorate in dental surgery, assistant professor Giang Vu already has some noteworthy accolades. Now, he has secured a competitive Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) honor that will add board certification in dental public health to the list.

Vu, who teaches in the College of Community Innovation and Education‘s School of Global Health Management and Informatics, was recently accepted to the two-year Dental Public Health residency program at the CDC. Dental public health is one of the 12 dental specialties recognized by American Dental Association. Through this advanced training program through the CDC, Vu is getting a head start on becoming board-certified in that specialty.

The CDC program is a combination of residency and fellowship, and Vu will gain more experience and learn skills across all ten designated competency areas of dental public health. This program has a strong focus on health management, health outcomes surveillance and health policy for oral health. He will have access to world-class experts in dentistry and public health, as well as CDC resources like the most current data and connections with other institutes like the National Institutes of Health. It is the oldest federal dental health residency program — and very selective, as Vu is one of only two fellows selected this year.

Vu will receive approximately $35,000 in annual funding to complete the program part time over the course of the two years. The hybrid program allows him to complete most of his work from home, but the CDC will provide travel to conferences and in-person events a few times a year.

“I’m very excited and proud to get this fellowship,” Vu says. “The program is extremely competitive, and the people who apply for this program are not only in the United States but also from around the world. This will advance my career in health management, health policy and informatics. This fellowship is not about money for me; it’s about the trainings, networking opportunities and advantages when I apply for grants in the future.”

Upon completion of the program, Vu hopes to obtain board certification in dental public health and become a diplomat in the field. The fellows take the first part of the exam before completion of the program.

“The opportunity to train with the CDC is very prestigious,” Vu says. “The faculty are extremely supportive. They check on you every week to make sure that you have whatever you need for your success in the program.”