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Building boom: Dental schools expand, create new facilities

April 30, 2012

By Karen Fox, ADA News staff

UNC School of Dentistry dedicates new building

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill opened the doors to a new education and research facility and honored a generous UNC alumnus and friend of its School of Dentistry April 27.

It’s official: UNC dignitaries cut the ribbon on the new dental school building April 27. From left are Holden Thorp, UNC chancellor; Dr. Jane Weintraub, dean; Wade Hargrove Jr., UNC Board of Trustees; Ann Koury and Maurice Koury, the N.C. businessman for whom the building is named. Photo by Ramona Hutton-Howe

The Koury Oral Health Sciences Building is named for Burlington, N.C., businessman Maurice J. Koury. The building will provide improved technology for teaching and collaborative research across UNC-Chapel Hill and other campuses, larger lecture rooms and meeting spaces for inter-class collaboration, and an expanded 105-seat patient simulation laboratory.

“This is an exciting time for the UNC School of Dentistry,” said Dr. Jane Weintraub, dean of the UNC dental school. “The Koury Oral Health Sciences Building will allow us to continue being a leader in dental education and research for many years to come. We’re grateful beyond words for the investment the General Assembly, our University and our private donors, especially Mr. Koury, made in our school to make this facility a reality.”

Mr. Koury, who enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill as an undergraduate in 1945, began his relationship with the School of Dentistry nearly 30 years ago as a patient and through patient referrals he made to the school. He is president of Carolina Hosiery Mills Inc., and over the years his business interests have also expanded to the development of hotels and commercial properties.

His undergraduate years were the beginning of a lifelong commitment to public higher education. Mr. Koury served two terms on the university’s Board of Trustees, and he chaired the student affairs and development committees. He also served two terms as president of the Educational Foundation Inc., and was the longtime chair of the foundation’s endowment trust. The Burlington native played a major role in securing funding for the Dean E. Smith Center and made a generous leadership gift to the George Watts Hill Alumni Center. His contributions to the College of Arts and Sciences include the establishment of the Edna J. Koury Distinguished Professorship, which honors his mother.

The joint commitment of the North Carolina General Assembly and School of Dentistry alumni and friends made possible the financing of the $118 million facility. The General Assembly contributed $92 million and the university provided $20.5 million toward the construction of the facility. School of Dentistry private donors committed more than $6.5 million.

Pacific breaks ground on new campus building

The University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry broke ground Jan. 18 on the school’s future new campus building in San Francisco.

The beginning: Officials at a Jan. 18 ceremony swing sledgehammers on the University of the Pacific dental school’s façade. From left are Pat Cavanaugh, U of P vice president; Dr. Ron Redmond, regent; Dr. Patrick Ferrillo Jr., dean; Jane Kim, District 6 supervisor; Kathy Janssen, chair, Board of Regents; Pamela A. Eibeck, president; Maria Pallavicini, provost; and Jim Mair, regent.

The space is being renovated and the new campus is expected to open in the summer of 2014.

The University of the Pacific is replacing the building’s façade with a glass exterior. The new building will contain labs, classrooms, research and support space for the dental school, and will also accommodate clinical changes and technology enhancements to support patient care.

“We are proud to be part of the exciting development activity taking place in the South of Market neighborhood,” said Dr. Patrick J. Ferrillo Jr., dean of the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry.

“The new facility will allow easier access for our patients to receive oral health care and provide state-of-the-art learning environments to support our academic programs,” continued Dr. Ferrillo. “It will provide an innovative academic environment that fosters the family spirit of the dental school, connects us to the community and supports our desire to be stewards of the environment. It will be comfortable, distinctive, inspiring and capable of adapting to new technologies, pedagogies and scholarship.”

Delta Dental donates lead gift for Marquette expansion

Delta Dental of Wisconsin donated $2 million to the Marquette University School of Dentistry’s Building for the Future campaign for a planned expansion to the dental school in Milwaukee. Marquette announced the donation in November 2011. A portion of the gift—$500,000—is a challenge grant to help leverage additional support.

Delta Dental’s gift is the first of an $8 million capital campaign, which will match $8 million already committed from the state of Wisconsin for the Milwaukee-based school. The university is in the design phase of the project and is committed to raising the remaining nonstate matching funds.

The $16-million, 40,000-square-foot expansion will create additional clinical, lab and classroom space at the dental school. When complete, the school will add enough clinical, lab and classroom space to accommodate classes of 100 students each year, up 20 from the current class size, for an annual enrollment of 400 students. Increased class sizes enables Marquette to address future dental workforce needs for the state. More than 80 percent of Marquette’s dental graduates practice in the state, with alumni practicing in 69 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties.

“This expansion keeps Wisconsin’s only dental school on the leading edge of dental education,” said Dr. William Lobb, dean. “The Marquette University School of Dentistry is educating highly skilled and technologically savvy dental professionals who are capable of providing contemporary care long into the future.”

New Georgia Health Sciences building 'a collaborative effort’

The Georgia Health Sciences University College of Dental Medicine unveiled its college’s new home in the fall of 2011 in Augusta, Ga.

Brand new: Some of the 316 clinical operatories featured at the new Georgia dental school facility.

In a Sept. 23 ceremony, Dr. Connie Drisko, dean of the College of Dental Medicine, said, “This beautiful building is nothing less than a fitting architectural representation of our gifted faculty, exceptional students and superb staff.”

Added Georgia Health Sciences University President Ricardo Azziz: “It is more than a building; it is an investment in the health of the citizens of Georgia.

State appropriations, donations and land acquisition from the city of Augusta made the building possible for the new building for the state’s only dental school. With added space, the freshman class will grow to 80 from 70 students.

“We’re very pleased to welcome the largest class in the history of this dental school,” said Dr. Drisko. “These 80 students represent the best of the best in Georgia and will soon join the over 2,000 graduates of this outstanding institution.”

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Louisville dental school completes $45-million renovation

The University of Louisville School of Dentistry in Kentucky marked the completion of a two-year renovation in September 2011. The $45-million project added more than 20,000 square feet and renovated another 211,000.

East entrance: A view of the new University of Louisville dental school, which opened in fall of 2011.

The improvements will have a far-reaching effect on the school’s capacity for innovation.

“Collaboration among departments and disciplines is essential to treat and solve the complexities of oral diseases,” said Dr. John Sauk, dental school dean. “The renovated facility will foster a practice-based research network.”

Enhancements include updates to infrastructure, operatory equipment and clinical education support. Other features include new digital radiography, incorporation of an electronic health records system and state-of-the-art classroom technology.

“These upgrades are critical to competing nationally for high quality students, recruiting talented faculty and attracting patients who need care and who augment the educational experience of our students,” said David Dunn, M.D., executive vice president for health affairs.

“We have access to new technology like the digital scanner—an optical wand that allows us to take multiple pictures and build a three dimensional image on a computer—technology that will ultimately replace the traditional metal tray used to take an impression of the teeth,” added senior dental student Caroline Curtis.

Indiana University names preclinical lab for IDA

The Indiana University School of Dentistry’s newly remodeled preclinical laboratory has been named for the Indiana Dental Association as a salute to the organization and the dental practitioners whose substantial support helped make the major renovation possible.

IU dental student Erik Zundo tries his hand in the new simulator lab in the fall of 2011.

The Indiana Dental Association Preclinical Laboratory, at the dental school in Indianapolis, was dedicated at a ribbon-cutting ceremony in September 2011 led by Dr. John N. Williams Jr., IU dean, and attended by hundreds of Indiana dentists and IU dental alumni.

“For decades the IDA and its membership have helped to uplift and support dental education in Indiana through its Pursuit of Excellence fund,” said Dr. Williams. “The association took the fundraising lead during the initial phase of this renovation in 2004, and since then has bolstered the school’s efforts every step of the way. We are extremely pleased to honor the state’s practitioners by naming the new preclinical lab for the IDA.”

More than 40 percent of the $4.6 million project was paid for through private donations, with the IDA and its membership contributing the most.

The 39-year-old lab has more than doubled in size and is now split into bench and simulator labs: each roomy enough to hold one of IU’s 100-student dental classes. In addition to 106 patient simulators and flat-screen TVs, the lab features digital radiography, three CAD/CAM units and experimental 3D haptic (virtual touch) technology. IU is serving as a testing site for the haptic software, which will allow students outfitted in 3D glasses to undertake virtual dental procedures on a computer screen, such as the restoration of a tooth, and receive realistic tactile sensations while doing so.