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Expanding Recruitment and Outreach Activities

Dental schools cannot solve the problem of inadequate access for underserved populations alone. They can, however, contribute to the solution in several ways, including recruiting more minorities who tend to treat underserved patients once they start to practice.

To enroll a more diverse student body, the 15 funded schools in the Pipeline, Profession & Practice: Community-Based Dental Education (Dental Pipeline) program have expanded existing recruitment and outreach activities and initiated new programs based on successful strategies cited in academic literature.

Academic enrichment
These programs include summer science and math courses for K-12 and college students to bolster their academic performance and preparation for higher education. They provide exposure to careers in dentistry, promote faculty and peer mentoring, and foster the schools’ diversity. Enrichment programs for college students may also include analytical and study skills, application process tutoring, oral presentation skills, mentoring, clinical shadowing opportunities, and an introduction to research methods. A number of dental schools have implemented successful programs to recruit minority and low-income students.

Strengthen and expand existing pool of pre-health college students
These short pipeline programs work with students who have already chosen dentistry as a profession by establishing formal partnerships with colleges, undergraduate advisors, and campus pre-dental clubs; enlisting faculty, students, and alumni in recruitment efforts; and providing financial aid and scholarship information.

The schools were asked to develop structured recruitment programs with measurable goals and mechanisms for tracking success. The programs target students at different stages of the educational pipeline. The emphasis is on short pipeline programs, which target college and post-baccalaureate students.



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