Representatives from dental schools nationwide participate in the Learning Institute.
Pacific Center for Special Care Receives Grant for National Dental Pipeline Learning Institute Phase IIThe new funding will support the pairing of ten schools with community partners to collaborateon on a community-based education or recruitment project.
The Pacific Center for Special Care at University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry has received a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for $782,141 to support the second phase of the Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute.
Dr. Paul Glassman, professor of dental practice and director of the Center for Special Care explained that the Learning Institute was founded by the Pacific Center in 2011 to spread the lessons of the National Dental Pipeline program to schools that did not participate in the first decade of Pipeline activities. Pacific is working with the American Dental Education Association to plan and develop the Learning Institute.
The Learning Institute's first cohort of trainees consisted of dental school representatives from 11 dental schools and a community partner from each participating school. Information about the initial phase of development of the Learning Institute can be found on the dental school web site and on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation web site.
"The word has spread about the Learning Institute," comments Maysa Namakian MPH, instructor in the Department of Dental Practice and project manager in the Pacific Center for Special Care. "There are more applicants for this second round of trainees than there were for the first."
For more than a decade, the dental education community's Dental Pipeline effort has strived to address limited access to oral care in underserved populations by recruiting and admitting dental students from underrepresented communities. The Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute was established to continue increasing recruitment and retention within those underserved communities.
The mission of the Learning Institute is to develop a group of national leaders who can share and support each other's work to help dental education address access and health disparities in the United States.