TMCC College News

Grand Opening of Pennington Dental Wing

Posted: Sep 26, 2013

Racquel Bridgewater, of the Pennington Foundation, with TMCC President Dr. Maria Sheehan

Racquel Bridgewater, of the William N. Pennington Foundation, with TMCC President Dr. Maria Sheehan.

The TMCC Foundation held a grand opening event on Thursday, Sept. 26 to dedicate the William N. Pennington Dental Wing, located at the Dandini Campus.  The major gift from the William N. Pennington Foundation demonstrated a partnership and investment committed to strengthening Nevada’s dental health industry through education, economic diversification and private industry.  

“The William N. Pennington Dental Wing is the home of TMCC’s renowned dental assisting and hygiene programs,” said Dr. Maria Sheehan, president of TMCC.  “The renovations afford us the opportunity to maintain high standards of achievement while meeting student and employer expectations and pursue additional revenue sources for the programs and the College.” 

Renovations to the dental clinic will allow TMCC to seek approval to become a Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene certification testing center and to hold continuing education courses for dental health practitioners.  Both will provide a revenue source for the dental programs and the College. 

The only program of its kind in northern Nevada, TMCC’s one-year dental assisting program is now in its 25thyear graduating 10 students each year.  The 13 year-old dental hygiene program garners extremely high national exam scores for graduates.  Both programs prepare students to seek high-skilled, high-wage employment and boast 100 percent job placement rates for those graduates seeking employment.

Students in the dental programs are required to conduct most of their practicum at the Pennington Dental Wing, seeing patients throughout their educational training.  In addition, free dental services are provided to more than 200 children, seniors and veterans and another 500 people were provided with dental health educational services and oral cancer screening at wellness and community fairs in the Reno area. 

Renovations in three key areas were made to enhance the learning experience and environment for students in the dental health programs.  Among the improvements, upgrades included digitizing the radiology component in the lab to train and encourage proficiency with state-of-the-art technology; the addition of two complete dental chair units to allow for an increase in the number of enrolled students in the program; and the addition of smart classroom equipment that allows for students to receive lecture instruction throughout the clinic while having access to lab equipment. 

The William N. Pennington Foundation was formed in 1989 by William N. Pennington as part of a broad commitment to charity.   The Foundation is primarily supportive of causes in the fields of education and medicine.  Mr. Pennington was well-known in Reno as a businessman and philanthropist, before he passed away in 2011.

For more information, call Kate Kirkpatrick in TMCC’s Public Information Office at 775-673-7206.

Posted by:
TMCC's Public Information Office
Telephone: 775-673-7087

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