“This is not just about me,” Darko told KUTV. “This is about representing my community.”
When Darko was admitted into the U’s School of Dentistry, she knew that celebrating a sense of belonging would be important as she matriculated there, so she decided to create an art gallery where students, faculty, staff and guests could check out the artistic side of the people on campus.
The goal, she said, was to encourage students to learn more about her Ghanaian heritage and to help them learn more about commemorating the cultures and talents of those from different parts of the world
“When I interviewed her I realized what a remarkable young woman that I was interviewing,” Dr. Watts said.
He further added that he was enthralled by the art display she created, which added to her talents as a future dentist.
“We work with students on hand skills. Learning how to work on teeth, be good providers. And we forget that translates into other types of visual art as well.”
But above all else, to be the first Black woman to graduate from the university’s dental program is something she will never take lightly.
For other prospective students of color who are interested in attending the U’s School of Dentistry, Dr. Watts offers this piece of advice.
“Apply. Come. Come. Just because Dentistry has been traditionally a white profession in the state of Utah for so many years, that doesn’t mean that the profession is closed to anyone else,” he said.