Hands-On Dental Program Targets New Students

06/27/00    Portland, Ore.


34th Annual Dental Careers Institute


June 25-29, 2000, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


OHSU School of Dentistry

For students who might be interested in pursuing a career in dentistry, Oregon Health Sciences University's School of Dentistry offers a unique opportunity. This week the school is hosting the 34th Annual Dental Careers Institute, which will provide 60 students from around the state a chance to see what dentistry is really about. For four days students will attend lectures, participate in laboratory work, observe demonstrations and view clinical procedures.

The program is geared toward high school and college students. Most applicants are in their teens, but that is not always the case. Dawn and Fred Seater of Oregon City are in their 30s and have two children. The Seaters had looked into the dental school's evening classes at Portland State University but felt that 10 p.m. was too late for a babysitter. The daytime, weeklong dental school program at OHSU was the perfect solution.

The Seaters both graduated with degrees in biology and have always considered pursuing medical careers. Dawn wanted to be a dentist ever since witnessing her grandmother receive dental implants and have her life totally transformed. Fred, who thinks he'd like to study orthodontics, says dentistry appeals to him because of the artistry involved and the close patient relationship.

As part of the program, the Seaters will attend classes on dental anatomy, maxillofacial surgery, oral hygiene, periodontology, orthodontics, AIDS in dentistry and oral pathology. The classes are very "hands on" and the students will spend plenty of time in clinic learning from each other as they use each other's mouths as models. They will learn about the future of dentistry and will work closely with faculty members and dental school students.

The goal of the program is to provide students with accurate information about a career in dentistry. During the past 33 years, the Dental Careers Institute has helped more than 1,970 individuals make well-informed decisions about their future. The emphasis is placed on increasing awareness about dentistry and the role that dental practitioners play in the community.

Scholarships for the 34th Annual Dental Careers Institute are sponsored by Lane County Dental Society, Multnomah County Dental Society, Southern Willamette Dental Society, Columbia Willamette Area Health Education Center, OHSU AHEC, Northeast AHEC, Casey Family Services, Marion Polk Yamhill Dental Society, the TAG program and many individual dentists.