Dr. Merchant teaches microbiology to dental, dental hygiene, and graduate dental students. She earned her B.A. degree in Biology from Winthrop College in South Carolina and an MS degree from the University of Georgia. She earned her D.M.D. from the Medical College of Georgia and then pursued a fellowship at the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, in dental research and microbiology followed by a second fellowship in the Department of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. Dr. Merchant is active in organized dentistry having served as Editor of the Detroit Dental Bulletin for nine years and is currently the Editor of the Michigan Dental Association. She is an officer of the Michigan Dental Association Board of Trustees and is a former Chair of the Michigan Section of the American College of Dentists. She joined the faculty of the University of Detroit in 1980.