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Biologic and Materials Sciences and Division of Prosthodontics

Billy Award Winners

2015-2016 - Juliana Castro-Lapeira

Dr. Juliana Castro-Lapeira received her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 2011 from the ULACIT University in San Jose, Costa Rica. In 2012, Dr. Castro did a one-year internship at the Prosthodontic Graduate Program at the University of Costa Rica. After finishing with her studies, Dr. Castro worked as an associate general dentist in a private office in San José. She is currently enrolled in the University of Michigan's Prosthodontics Graduate Program with the intent of becoming an excellent clinician and expanding the learning to Costa Rica's future dentists.

2014-2015 - Sabrina Garcia Gazaui

Dr. Garcia Gazaui was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela. She attended dental school at the Universidad Central de Venezuela, where she obtained the degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery in December 2011. After completing her graduation she started working as an assistant with two different Prosthodontists with private practice in Caracas to observe, learn and practice about the specialty. During dental school training, she worked ad-honorem as a Teaching Assistant in Department of Removable Partial Dentures. In March 2012, she became part of the Department of Crown and Bridge where she performed as a Collaborative Professor in the pre-clinical and clinical environment. She started the Graduate Program of Prosthodontics in September 2013 and she is willing to develop and improve clinical and laboratory skills. After obtaining her Prosthodontist degree, Dr. Garcia Gazaui would like to teach and work in private practice.

2014-2015 - Anastasia Katsavochristous

Dr. Anastasia Katsavochristou received her DDS degree in 2010 from the School of Dentistry at the University of Athens, in Greece. For the following two years, she worked in private practice in Athens, practicing general dentistry with an orientation in the field of prosthodontics. At the same time, she was also involved in a private practice office oriented in prosthodontics and orofacial pain management.

In 2012, Dr. Katsavochristou was accepted in the 3- year graduate program in Prosthodontics at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. Her plan is to specialize in the field of prosthodontics, in combination with pursuing a Master of Science degree. Dr. Katsavochristou’s aspiration is to become an expert clinician, skillful researcher, and to contribute in the academic domain.

2013-2014 - Abdulaziz Binrayes

Dr. Binrayes was born and raised in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He graduated from King Saud University (KSU) with a Bachelor’s degree in Dental Surgery (BDS) in 2008. He completed a one-year internship training program at KSU as well as several other hospitals. Dr. Binrayes was selected as a teaching assistant at KSU, Department of Prosthetic Dental Sciences, in 2009. He taught full-time in the dental school's undergraduate clinic and pre-clinic as a removable and fixed prosthodontic instructor.

Dr. Binrayes believes that a prosthodontist has the responsibility to create foundations with patients that will last a lifetime. To obtain this knowledge and expertise will require a well-structured postgraduate program, which is why he joined the Graduate Prosthodontic Program at the University of Michigan, School of Dentistry. This program will help him achieve his goals and ambitions, to continue his excitement in being a prosthodontist, and enable him to bring complex prosthetic cases to reality. After graduation, Dr. Binrayes plans to join a PhD program, which will enable him to be proficient in delivering prosthodontic education to future dental professionals in Saudi Arabia.

2013-2014 - Priscila Schaefer

Dr. Schaefer went to dental school at the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon in Monterrey, Mexico. She graduated with a degree in dental surgery in spring 2011.  After which she did a year of social service assisting the Prosthodontics graduate program there, getting the chance to observe and practice what residents in this specialty do.  She also worked part time as an assistant with three different Prosthodontists during dental school.

She is thrilled to be starting the Graduate Prosthodontics Program at University of Michigan in January 2013 where she would like to obtain the combined certificate/masters degree. She is very proud to be fulfilling her dream and is confident that upon completion of the program she will have gained the skills and knowledge to pursue a successful career as a Prosthodontist. Her plans once she graduates are to work in a private practice and to continue with further research back in her hometown in Mexico.

2012-2013 - Areej Al-Hawarini

2012-2013 - Waled Alshhrani

Dr. Alshhrani was born and raised in Saudi Arabia. He graduated from King Saud University with a BDS degree in dentistry in 2007. For two years he worked part-time for four different dental centers. Dr. Alshhrani was then selected to join the Prosthdontics department at King Saud University as a teaching assistant. He also taught full-time in the dental school's undergraduate clinic and pre-clinic as a removable and fixed prosthodontics instructor. In 2010, Dr. Ashhrani joined the prosthodontic post-doctoral program at University of Michigan. He is now very proud and excited to be a part of the Class of 2014 in the Graduate Prosthodontics program at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry where he will improve his ability to rehabilitate the most challenging clinical restorative case.  After graduation, he plans to join the PhD program at University of Michigan and then go back to Saudi Arabia to teach and practice dentistry at King Saud University.

2011-2012 - Sotirios Vrettos

2011-2012 - Daniela Orellana

2011-2012 - Kevin Aminzadeh

2010-2011 - Dimitrios Chronaios

Dr. Chronaios is from Greece and he graduated with his dental degree from King's College in London in 2007. For two years before he  joined the Prosthodontic program, he worked in a private practice in Athens, Greece.  Dimitrios also worked for a year as a general dentist in the Greek Navy, while doing his service. Specialized education in prosthodontics interests Dimitrios, since the first time he understood what prosthodontic and restorative dentistry involved. He is certain that his studies at the University of Michigan will help him get a complete education in prosthodontics.

2010-2011, 2009-2010 - Andreas Eliades

Dr. Eliades was born and raised in Limassol, Cyprus. From 2000-02 he served his two-year military service as an Officer of the Special Forces in Cyprus. He received his DDS degree in 2007 from the University of Athens, School of Dentistry, in Greece. He then practiced dentistry for one year in a private clinic in Cyprus. Dr. Eliades has always been determined to pursue a career in Prosthodontics and is very proud of his acceptance into the Prosthodontics Graduate Program at the University of Michigan. He looks forward for this new challenge in his life and is confident that the University of Michigan will provide him a strong background for the demanding profession of Prosthodontics.

2009-2010 - Zeina Al-Salihi

Dr. Al-Salihi was born and raised in Baghdad, the capital city of IRAQ.  She graduated from the school of dentistry, Baghdad University, in 1996 and then completed two years as a dental rotator and a general practitioner in the suburban’s public dental clinics of the Ministry of Health. After receiving her MSc in prosthodontics in 2001, she worked as a full-time lecturer at the School of Dentistry, University of Baghdad. She received a scholarship to join a graduate program in Prosthodontics in 2005. She is excited and very proud to join the graduate prosthodontics program at the University of Michigan.

2009-2010 - Panagiota-Eirini Spyropoulou

Dr. Spyropoulou was born and raised in Athens, which is the capital of Greece. She graduated from the University of Athens, School of Dentistry in 2006 and worked for one year as a General Dentist in a private clinic in Greece. From the first years of her studies Penny realized that she would like to pursue a career in Prosthodontics, and that she also wanted to do her specialty training in the USA.  Dr. Spyropoulou feels very lucky that she was accepted into the Prosthodontic Graduate Program at the University of Michigan, School of Dentistry and is looking forward to experiencing a new life in Michigan.

2008-2009 - Yi-Ming (Ben) Yang

Dr. Yang was born and raised in Taiwan. He received his DDS degree from the National Taiwan University, School of Dentistry, in 2005.  After graduation, he served as a Military Dental Officer in the F-16 Air Force Base for one year.  Dr. Yang continued his private dental practice in Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company for another six months before being accepted into the Graduate Prosthodontic Program at University of Michigan.  


Ben is proud to have supportive parents and mentors, who gave him invaluable encouragement and motivation for pursuing a specialty in Prosthodontics.  Dr. Yang is very excited to start a new life in Ann Arbor and hopes to broaden his vision by increasing his prosthodontic knowledge at this great University. 

2007-2008 - Romeo (Jun) Paculanan

Romeo (Jun) Paculanan was born and raised in Manila, Philippines, where he graduated and received his DDS Degree from Centro Escolar University, College of Dentistry in 1988. After graduation he had a private practice as a General Dentist for several years before moving to Toronto, Canada.  He is happily married to a lovely and supportive wife, Teo, and they have two children, Francis and Franchesa.  In Toronto Dr. Paculanan learned the laboratory aspect of preparing and processing complete and partial dentures.  He was the supervisor of a lab in the Denture Department where he worked before coming to Michigan.  He knows that it will take a lot of hard work to finish the prosthodontic graduate program, but knowing that in the future he will be able to give his patients the best possible treatment they deserve is a great motivation.