The American Dental Education Association concluded in 1999 that “dental education is now in a crisis” due to the shortage of dental faculty.1 The number of faculty vacancies in the clinical sciences more than doubled in recent years, and retirements will outpace new faculty assignments in the coming decade because 47 percent of all dental faculties are age 50 and older. Relatively low salaries for academics compared to practioners’ handicap recruitment.
While dental schools grapple with the problems of educating future practitioners in the face of inadequate numbers of instructors, this crisis presents an opportunity to align the demographics of dental school faculties with the demographics of the general population. The Dental Pipeline program sponsors efforts to recruit members of minority groups to positions in health education research and practice, with the goal that professional representation at least match representation in the general population.
The philanthropic community has implemented faculty development programs. Below are dental programs aimed at minority faculty development:
New York State Academic Dental Centers (NYSADC) Minority Dental Faculty Development Program (MDFD)
Minority Faculty Development Program (MDFD)
Harvard Medical School Minority Faculty Development Program (MFDP)
Faculty from the Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Dental Medicine, Harvard School of Public Health, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard Graduate School of Business and Administration, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences are involved in program development and implementation.
For further information contact:
Washington, DC 20202
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