The Student Chapter of the American Dental Hygienist’s Association is for students currently enrolled in the Associate Degree of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene. These students raise money to attend conferences and give back to the community with free teeth assessment and cleaning as well as x-rays and referrals to dentists.Contact
Faculty Advisor: Karen Avey, [email protected]
Laurel Ridge Community College along with Danville Community College are the distance sites for the Joint Venture Program with Virginia Western Community College located in Roanoke, Virginia. Virginia Western is a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) accredited dental hygiene program.
The program offers a five semester Associate Degree of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene. Lori Ellington, RDH MSAH is the Site Coordinator for the Laurel Ridge location. Eighteen students are selected every two years for the program.
The program is very competitive and students that are selected for the programs cohort have a compassion for helping others as well as a good G.P.A. A typical day consists of six to eight hours of combined clinical, laboratory and classroom instruction, Homework constitutes about two hours per night. By the second semester of the program, students begin assessing oral health and cleaning teeth of friends, relatives, and community members. Appointments may last up to three hours during the learning phase. On average the clinic at Laurel Ridge donates approximately $300,000 annually in pro-bono dental services to nearly 690 residents.
In their last year of school, the students participate in the Valley Health Community Wellness Festival as well as visiting area schools to present oral health programs. They also undertake two clinical site rotations at the Dental Clinic of the Northern Shenandoah Valley in Winchester and Saint Luke’s Community Clinic in Front Royal.
Ninety-four percent of the students enrolled in the program graduated with a 100% employment rate after receiving their license. The average salary range throughout Virginia is about $39-$60/hour depending on the location of the practice and benefit package.
Dr. Nancy Bollinger and Dr. Dandridge Allen are dentists at Laurel Ridge’s clinic who oversee the administration of anesthesia, interpret x-rays, and make referrals. The clinic does not charge a fee for their services.
This is a valuable community resource because not all teaching programs provide their services to the public at no cost. The student hygienists may provide the following:
- Full dental assessments
- Periodontal assessments
- Fluoride treatments
- Instructions for oral hygiene
- Nutritional counseling
- Instructions for tobacco cessation
- Administer anesthesia
For more information regarding the Dental Hygiene program at Laurel Ridge or to make an appointment at the clinic, telephone 540-868-7062.
Local Periodontist Supports Dental Hygiene Program at Laurel Ridge
Dr. Byron Brill a retired local periodontist, continues to support the dental hygiene program with contributions to the C.A & Helen Brill Powers Fund through the Laurel RidgeCommunity College Foundation. This fund has provided for new clinic equipment and faculty educational development.