By Nicole Minier
CHURUBUSCO — At age 3 Emily Berning went to Churubusco Family Dentistry for Dr. Dionne Hladin for her first teeth cleaning.
On the way out the door, she looked up to her mom and said, “I’m going to be a dentist just like Dr. Hladin.”
That came true July 5, 2016, when Berning joined Dr. Hladin and Dr. Richard Zollinger as the newest dentist at Churubusco Family Dentistry.
Berning, a 2008 Columbia City High School graduate, has been a patient there her whole life, and now she’s getting patients of her own.
While in high school, Berning decided to pursue her dream further by job shadowing at Churubusco Family Dentistry.
Berning went to Hillsdale College where she studied biology until 2012, while continuing to job shadow at various practices. She went on to Indiana University to study dentistry and spent the summers as a dentist’s assistant in Churubusco. She graduated last May.
Berning replaced retired Dr. Russ Gilliom, who had been at the practice for decades.
She is the daughter of Donald and Wendy Berning of Columbia City.