Mission and goals

Program

The mission of the dental hygiene program is to prepare future practitioners who are competent in patient care delivered in a culturally-sensitve manner, will provide service to the local, national and global community and the profession and are lifelong learners who are responsive to a changing profession.

The dental hygiene program is dedicated to providing an education to a diverse population of learners in a patient-centered, student-friendly atmosphere that fosters active and self-directed learning, critical thinking and self-assessment.

Dental hygienists are recognized in their roles as clinician, educator, advocate, manager and researcher in the prevention of oral diseases and health promotion. Our purpose is to empower students in attaining their full potential as informed, productive oral health professionals with a lifelong commitment to learning and service.

Program goals

The following program goals reflect the mission of Virginia Commonwealth University and the VCU School of Dentistry:

Education

  • Prepare dental hygiene graduates who possess the knowledge, values, ethics and skills to provide quality dental hygiene care through demonstrated competence
  • Provide students with an interdisciplinary curriculum that integrates biomedical, clinical and behavioral sciences

Patient care

  • Prepare dental hygiene graduates who are competent to provide patient-centered, comprehensive, evidence-based dental hygiene care in an ethical and professional manner
  • Provide a clinical education based on wellness designed to create satisfied patients who will achieve and maintain optimal oral health through a combined educational, preventive and therapeutic approach

Service

  • Prepare dental hygiene graduates to respond to the evolving oral health care needs of a culturally-diverse society by demonstrating a commitment to the community
  • Provide students with opportunities for service learning activities in the community that promote the missions of the school, university and profession

Professionalism

  • Prepare dental hygiene graduates to assume active roles in professional organizations
  • Provide students with the skills to advance the foundation and practice of dental hygiene through a commitment to scientific inquiry and life-long learning