By TAYLOR HARTZ
Lincoln College of New England (LCNE) has added another bachelor’s degree program to its expanding catalog – the Southington college will now offer a bachelors of science degree in dental hygiene.
The new program will serve as a “completer” for students who have already earned an Associate’s Degree in dental hygiene. This advanced degree program will provide students an opportunity to further their education in contemporary dental hygiene studies.
Students with their associate’s degree will already be licensed dental hygienists, able to work in the field, but a four-year degree better prepares students for their career needs.
“The completer program will help current hygienists qualify for new opportunities in an expanding market,” said LCNE President Denise Lewicki.
The college graduated its first class in a similar program last May, offering a new bachelor of science degree program for nursing.
The 31-credit program is open to students who earned their associates at LCNE or any other program approved by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA.)
“We will keep up with the latest with teaching methodologies including evidence based research,” said Rosemary B. Ryan C.D.A., R.D.H., M.P.H., program director for dental studies at the college.
The bachelor’s program will also “allow them to be one step closer to teaching in dental hygiene or dental assisting schools,” said Ryan.
The program will feature five courses on dental hygiene and four electives in the humanities and general studies. The course will finish with a capstone project, where students will chose a topic in dental hygiene to focus on as their final course.
The dental hygiene courses will focus on contemporary topics in the field, said Ryan, including community oral health program planning and assessment.
“We’re definitely basing our decisions on treatment of patients on evidence based research,” said Ryan.
The program is designed to be a full-time, one-year program, but it is flexible to accommodate work schedules.
“With most hygienists returning back to school while in the workforce, we kept their schedules in mind,” said Ryan.
Dental hygiene courses will be held in the evenings, and electives are available online. Ryan said that any student who has completed a CODA certified associate’s degree will have sufficient qualifications to be enrolled in the program.
The college is accepting applications for the fall semester through the start of classes on Tuesday, Sept. 8, and will accept future applications on a rolling basis. Ryan said the college will expand its staff as necessary to accommodate all students interested in earning their bachelor’s degree.
“We stand behind our programs and behind the success of our students,” said Lewicki. “The addition of the Bachelor Dental Hygiene completion program is a perfect example of how we tailor programs to meet the needs of Connecticut’s workforce.”
To learn more about Lincoln College New England, contact the admissions office at (800) 328-6077 or visit them on-line at www.lincolncollegene.edu.