W.K. Kellogg Foundation has awarded $200,000 grant to the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) to expand the minority dental faculty development (MDFD) program's existing critical efforts to improve diversity among populations of dental students and faculty.
ADEA said the funding will extend additional support including recruitment and leadership training programs within dental hygiene at the two dental hygiene programs, one at the University of Detroit Mercy and the other at Howard University.
W.K. Kellogg Foundation program officer Alice Warner said, "We must work together at a systems level to address the oral health inequities among vulnerable children and families, and to do this, it’s critical to increase the diversity of the pipeline of all allied oral health professions."
ADEA senior scholar Jeanne Sinkford said the beauty of the program lies not only in its impact upon individuals, but also in its promotion of the kind of institutional growth that fosters a sustained commitment to faculty diversity.
"We hope that the models developed as a result will be replicated at other schools on an international scale," Sinkford added.
ADEA executive director Richard Valachovic said, "The additional funds for the second phase of the project will not only support ADEA in addressing the severe shortage of underrepresented minorities within the dental school faculty population, but also allow for key partnerships with dental schools and allied health programs to improve the lives of vulnerable children and communities."