School of Dental Medicine

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Dean's Message: Fall 2012

Fostering Relations with Chinese Dental Programs

In spring of 2011, two faculty administrators from The Stomatological Hospital of Nankai University visited the University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Dental Medicine to learn about the American system of dental education, and consider establishing university exchanges and sister-school relationship. Soon they extended a reciprocal invitation for a delegation from UNLV SDM to learn about the Chinese system of dental education and establish a formal working relationship. The following group was selected to travel due to their diverse areas of expertise; Dean Karen P. West, Dr. Wendy Woodall, Dr. Marcia Ditmyer and Dr. Wenlian Zhou.

We travelled to Tianjin, the home of our future sister school, The Stomatological Hospital of Nankai University and the Department of Dentistry, Medical School of Nankai University (which will be the future School of Stomatology of Nankai University in around about 2014). We met with leaders of the Stomatological Hospital, as well as the parent Nankai University, exchanging presentations about our facilities. We toured the dental hospital treatment areas, from prevention through cleft palate surgical floors, and met with current students. Research facilities, dental nurse education school, laboratory services and historical sites were included. This culminated in the signature and exchange of documents to establish the relationship between The University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Dental Medicine and the Stomatological Hospital of Nankai University.

Through departmental interactions we determined the student progress through Chinese dental education. Immediately after graduation from secondary school, select students with excellent grades and testing scores are placed in the dental tract. They study biomedical sciences for two years, usually with the medical students. Third year is devoted to simulation training, where procedures are developed through typodont performance. Over the next two years, students rotate through departments to observe faculty and perform assigned procedures for patients under their guidance on patients seeking care at these hospitals.

— Dr. Karen P. West, Dean