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Release: Immediate

College of Dentistry launches $2 million campaign to fund renovations

IOWA CITY, Iowa--The University of Iowa College of Dentistry and the University of Iowa Foundation have announced a $2 million campaign to help fund the first major renovation of instructional facilities since the Dental Science Building was constructed in 1972. The campaign's kickoff coincides with Dental Alumni Weekend Sept. 26-27.

In addition to $2 million or more in private gifts from faculty, staff, alumni, and friends, the $3.5 million renovation is being financed through support from the university and from funds raised through a student tuition surcharge.

In the early "quiet" phase, nearly $400,000 in gifts and commitments have been committed to the campaign.

The campaign will help fund modern facilities including a Simulation Clinic that will use the latest instructional technology to help students acquire knowledge, practice procedures, and develop problem-solving skills in a clinical environment from the first day they begin their dental education at Iowa.

"The information explosion and major technological advances have broadened the skills needed by today's dentists," explained David Johnsen, dean of the UI College of Dentistry. "Our planning committee visited other schools that have built simulation clinics, and they gathered information from our students, faculty, and alumni. We outlined a specific project to meet Iowa's needs."

When completed, the Simulation Clinic will help first- and second-year students make a smoother transition from the preclinical to the clinical setting, allow seniors to refine their skills for clinical board and licensure examinations, and provide a realistic environment for hundreds of dental practitioners who come to the UI College of Dentistry for continuing education.

"The new facilities will help us teach students problem-solving skills that will help them adapt to rapid scientific advances throughout their careers," said Johnsen. "This is the largest, most exciting, student-focused project the college has undertaken since the building opened."

As part of the campaign's early phase, College of Dentistry faculty and staff received materials this month enlisting their financial support for the project. This is in advance of the public fund-raising effort, according to Dave Triplett, the UI Foundation's director of development for the College of Dentistry. "Faculty and staff are enthusiastic about this project and its resulting benefits to the college's future. I am sure they will respond generously." Dental alumni will be contacted early next spring during the "active" phase of the fund-raising campaign.

The fund-raising campaign, with Johnsen and Triplett as co-directors, is being led by a volunteer steering committee of alumni, faculty, staff, and friends. Committee co-chairs are Ross Christensen, who earned D.D.S. and master's degrees from the UI and operates an orthodontic practice in Waterloo, Iowa; and Eva Dahl, who has earned D.D.S., M.A., and M.S. degrees from the UI. Dahl practices in LaCrosse, Wis.

The renovation is being designed by Gary Nagle, UI architect, in coordination with College of Dentistry planning committees. Phase one of the project, to be completed in June 1998, will include:

* A Simulation Clinic where students will work on mannequins in about 80 dental units, each with a computer monitor. Instructors can demonstrate procedures using slides, radiographs, videotape, and live images from a camera. Students can "replay" demonstrations and practice techniques in a realistic physical position with equipment similar to the clinic. In two rooms within the Simulation Clinic, students will learn to operate equipment to make and develop radiographs.

* A Support Laboratory used for pouring models, casting, and fabrication of prosthodontic appliances, allowing students to work with dental materials safely and efficiently.

* A Grading Room with provide space for discussion of student projects.

Phase two of the project will begin in the summer of 1998 and includes construction of an Extended Access Technique Laboratory for students to use during and after regular class hours; and a classroom for teaching small groups of students.

The UI Foundation is the preferred channel of support for private contributions to all areas of the University of Iowa. Foundation staff work with alumni and friends to provide capital funds, scholarships, and other forms of support for the UI.

University of Iowa College of Dentistry

Facilities Campaign

Fact Sheet

Deficiencies of current facilities

* No major facilities changes to improve educational facilities since the Dental Science Building was constructed 25 years ago. Even with conscientious maintenance, equipment and facilities show extensive wear from years of heavy use.

* Students spend many hours beyond scheduled class time working in laboratories that are scattered around the building; increasing concerns for safety and security.

* The preclinical laboratories cannot easily accommodate modern instructional technology such as video disc, videotape, intra-oral cameras, computers, and networks. Without more access to computer-based learning, students, find it difficult to learn at their own pace.

* Students must make the abrupt transition from learning and practicing procedures in a preclinical laboratory setting to treating patients in a clinic environment.

* The Dental Science Building has only one large auditorium, which is not suitable for small group instruction for students and dental practitioners taking continuing education courses.

Renovation project goals

* Create a facility to anticipate dental practice after the year 2000. Provide a student-centered environment that matches the top quality of the college's students and maximizes faculty strengths.

* Renovating space that is functional, enhances small group instruction, and can accommodate electronic instructional technology.

* Replace the preclinical laboratories with a new Simulation Clinic that will help students quickly integrate scientific knowledge, technical expertise, problem solving, and treatment planning skills in preparation for patient care.

* Make the current instructional facilities more flexible so the space can be adapted to future educational needs and more realistic for practitioners who attend "hands-on" continuing education courses at the college.

* Modernize the technique lab to provide a centrally located, modern facility for students to perform lab work during non-class hours.

* Keep pace with the country's other leading dental schools, and make sure that the teaching advances made possible by the renovation will provide students with flexible skills that adapt to change.

For a student perspective, contact:

Karen Wolf, President, Iowa Student Dental Association

Scott Johnson, President, Class of 1999 (serves on project planning committee)

Architectural elements

Simulation Clinic

Support Laboratory


Grading Room

Radiology Rooms

Extended Access Technique Laboratory


Proposed timeline

Phase One:

December 1997 - Demolition of freshman laboratory and adjoining space

January 1998 - Begin construction of Simulation Clinic, Support Laboratory, and Dispensary

June 1998 - Construction completed

Phase Two:

Summer 1998 - Begin construction of the Extended Access Technique Laboratory, Classroom, and Offices

Fall 1998 - Construction completed

Fund-raising campaign

* Seeks to raise $2 million or more in gifts and multi-year pledges

* Conducted jointly by the College of Dentistry and the UI Foundation.

* Nearly 4,000 alumni will be contacted for support

* Led by a 30-member campaign committee that includes alumni, faculty, and staff

For more information contact:

Dave Triplett

Director of Development, College of Dentistry

The University of Iowa Foundation (319) 335-3305

or Dr. David Johnsen, Dean, College of Dentistry, (319) 335-9650.