The UK College of Dentistry’s diverse outreach and service-learning programs provide dental students with a valuable and exceptional service-learning experience.
Our community outreach endeavors are essential attributes of both our education and service mission, while fostering an awareness of access to care issues and developing altruistic professional aspiration for volunteerism and social responsibility.
All dental students are strongly encouraged to play an active, responsible role in their community. UK College of Dentistry offers a variety of opportunities for its students to get involved and promote oral health awareness in our communities.
Since 1996, the Division of Dental Public Health has conducted school-based Seal Kentucky trips to provide dental screenings and sealants in primarily Eastern Kentucky. A dental sealant is a plastic coating painted onto the surface of the tooth to prevent tooth decay. In 1987, only 7.6% of Kentucky children were found to have sealants.
UKCD student dentists, faculty and volunteers travel to elementary schools for up to three days and apply sealants to children whose parents consent to their treatment. Each child is also screened, and a report describing their dental status is sent home to their parents.
Fayette County Mobile Clinic
The Ronald McDonald mobile dental clinic provides fourth year dental students under faculty supervision the opportunity to provide preventive and comprehensive dental care services to pediatric populations. This enriching rotation offers our students the opportunity to advance their pediatric clinical skills; enhance their experience in the management of pediatric dental patients, and broaden their understanding of dental public health issues and the needs of the underserved community. The students have the added experience of using electronic dental records and digital radiography.
Give Kids a Smile
This annual program is sponsored by the American Dental Association as an effort to provide dental screenings and treatment to underserved children. UKCD students, faculty and staff volunteer to perform the child’s most needed treatment – including sealants, fillings and extractions.
Saturday Morning Clinics
The Saturday Morning Clinics are a tradition at the UKCD. Established in 1976, this student-led project provides no-cost treatment to children six times per year. In addition to being a vital safety net for children, the SMC provides an opportunity for prospective students to visit the College and see our student dentists at work in the clinic.