Mission and goals
The VCU Dental Hygiene Program advantage
Attending the only dental hygiene program located within a dental school in the Commonwealth of Virginia, dental hygiene students at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry have a unique opportunity to work in integrated clinical settings alongside D.D.S. students as well as with faculty members from dental hygiene, dentistry and specialty areas – gaining invaluable experiences as they learn the practice of dental hygiene while treating a highly diverse patient population. Academic excellence and clinical expertise are further supported by rotations through specialty areas (orthodontics, periodontics, oral surgery, and pediatric dentistry) and community-based and private-practice clinics at collaborative service-learning sites throughout Virginia.
The Virginia Commonwealth University Dental Hygiene Program is committed to excellence in education, patient care, service, and professionalism. The focus of the program is to prepare future practitioners to deliver healthcare services in an interdisciplinary, culturally-sensitive manner. The mission is to provide an exceptional education to empower students to become lifelong learners, devoted to scientific inquiry and service to the local, national, and global community.
Professional Roles of the Dental Hygienist
The dental hygienist plays an integral role in assisting individuals and groups in achieving and maintaining optimal oral health. The American Dental Hygienists’ Association describes the professional roles of the dental hygienist as a clinician, an educator, a researcher, an administrator and an entrepreneur.