Monday 5 August 2019 12:22pm
It will be both a homecoming and a new adventure when the University of Otago Faculty of Dentistry’s new Dean arrives next year.
Professor Mike Morgan, who will begin in the role by February 2020, graduated from Dunedin as a dentist in 1979. The intervening decades have mostly been spent in Australian academia – as well as a three-year spell in Hong Kong.
During those years Professor Morgan has undertaken significant research and filled many leadership positions – including his current role as Head of the Melbourne Dental School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, at the University of Melbourne.
Otago Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne said the appointment of such a well-respected, highly qualified and vastly experienced person was worthy of celebration.
“Professor Morgan will bring considerable experience and talent to what is an important role for the Faculty and for the wider University. I am looking forward to his arrival; we know he will drive the Faculty of Dentistry forward over the coming years.
“We also know the Faculty’s facilities, research, reputation and its calibre of staff and students make it a sought-after place to work. An appointment of someone as well regarded as Professor Morgan is proof of that.”
"I look forward to working with the outstanding staff and students to see the Faculty reach its full potential in the coming years."
Professor Morgan said the opportunity to return to Dunedin’s Faculty of Dentistry, with its long history, brand-new world-class facilities, and its ranking as one of the world’s top dental schools, was an honour.
“The Dental Faculty at Otago has been gifted an extraordinary generational opportunity to build on its already outstanding reputation, and to set a future course for providing the best oral health care and research knowledge in the New Zealand community and internationally.
“I am absolutely honoured to join the University of Otago at this exciting time in the Faculty of Dentistry’s remarkable evolution.
“And I am thrilled to return to the University which provided me with a career in dentistry and academia. I look forward to working with the outstanding staff and students to see the Faculty reach its full potential in the coming years.”
University of Otago Division of Health Sciences Pro-Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Brunton said Professor Morgan was an excellent researcher, teacher and senior administrator.
“I am delighted that he will now be in a position to provide his outstanding leadership to the whole of the Faculty of Dentistry. I look forward to working with Professor Morgan and staff of the Faculty into the future.”
The University of Otago’s Faculty of Dentistry, founded in 1907, is New Zealand’s only dental school and is ranked as one of the top dental schools in the world.