The College of Dentistry at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center recently participated in the American Dental Association’s annual Give Kids a Smile Day. Partnering with Freedom Preparatory Academy Charter School, the College of Dentistry provided 1,105 procedures to more than 80 children valued at $22,188.
Give Kids a Smile Day was launched in 2003 by the American Dental Association to provide free dental services to children through the help of volunteers. The UTHSC College of Dentistry has participated in the national event for five years.
“This event is a win-win for both the College of Dentistry and the community,” said John Seeberg, DMD, associate dean for Clinical and Extramural Affairs. “Our students are able to receive credit toward their degree for the dental procedures performed, and we are able to provide a much needed service to children in our community.”
The event was the third time the College of Dentistry has partnered with Freedom Preparatory Academy. The first year included dental screenings at the elementary school. The past two years included dental procedures for their sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-grade students from their Whitehaven and Westwood campuses during Give Kids a Smile Day at the College of Dentistry.
Dental procedures are performed by UTHSC dentistry and dental hygiene students under the supervision of faculty. Some of the procedures provided included examinations, cleanings, fillings, extractions, and fluoride applications.
“Freedom Preparatory Academy is honored to partner with UTHSC to bring services to our students who would not necessarily have access to these type of services for free,” Candace Ashir Gray, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications for Freedom Preparatory Academy Charter Schools said. “As educators, we want our students to learn proper dental hygiene and to take what they learned here today and apply them to everyday life.”