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Dr. Thomas Fry

Faculty Feature: Meet Thomas Fry, DDS

CU Dental Assistant Professor, Department of Diagnostic Sciences & Surgical Dentistry

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Written by Laura Ramsey on August 19, 2022

Thomas Fry, DDS, is a Colorado native and a 2019 graduate of the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine. He readily admits that he is overjoyed to be back in his home state and his home institution. From 2019-2022, he completed General Practice and Oral Medicine Residencies at Atrium Health Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, NC, with a special interest in the clinical treatment of oral mucosal lesions and orofacial pain. As one of only a few oral medicine specialists in the state of Colorado, Dr. Fry is excited to share his knowledge and experience with the next generation of dentists.

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Why did you choose to go into dentistry, and your specialty in particular?

I knew that I wanted to be in a helping profession, and my grandfather was a dentist, so I was familiar with the field. I was torn between medicine and dentistry, and once I started dental school I was immediately drawn to oral medicine, because it operates at the interface between the two. I get to work closely with both physicians and dentists, and I spend most of my day talking with patients and developing diagnoses, rather than performing procedures. It fits my personality—I really enjoy the mental exercise of diagnostic work, and I get to work with patients who often struggle to find the right diagnosis and treatment. Helping them is very satisfying.

What is your proudest professional accomplishment?

Just getting to where I am now was a huge mountain to climb. I was a liberal arts major in college, with no plans to go into healthcare, so I had to return to university for prerequisite work before completing dental school and residency. It was a 10-year journey that I’m proud to have completed, and I’m excited to start my next chapter here at CU.

What do you think are the most important attributes of a strong student and future dentist?

A call to service, a strong work ethic, and a desire to connect with patients. We must remember that our work is for the benefit of our patients and communities; that our work is demanding and requires excellence; and that our patients are people with emotional needs that we need to fill. If you can keep those three balls in the air, you will succeed as a student and as a doctor.

Topics: Faculty