Blinn Dental Hygiene Program partners with United Way of Brazos Valley to promote oral health

Students promoted the important tips through care bundles and virtual story time

Students promoted the important tips through care bundles and virtual story time

May 24, 2021

Blinn College Dental Hygiene Program students helped raise awareness of proper oral health care during a recent partnership with the United Way of the Brazos Valley. As a part of the United Way’s Baby Bundles and Reading Day 2021 programs, students developed an informational brochure and recorded videos that emphasize the importance of dental health care.

Blinn students participated in the two initiatives through their course DHYG 1215: Community Dentistry.

“This was a wonderful opportunity for our students to apply their knowledge and have an impact on the community beyond the classroom or dental clinic setting,” Dental Hygiene Instructor Dana Wood said. “So many families in our area lack access to proper oral health care and these programs are another way we can help educate parents and children. Our students also learn to have an appreciation for public service at the beginning of their careers, which is a passion they can take with them for a lifetime.”

United Way of the Brazos Valley oversees programs benefiting the health, education, and financial stability of every person in the Brazos Valley. Aimed at promoting literacy from birth, the Baby Bundles program provides care packages for new parents that include a board book, new parent tips, a toy, and information on community resources and services. In addition to assembling bundles, Blinn students created a dental health brochure highlighting infant and early childhood dental care for inclusion in the packages.

“Being able to provide support to new parents in our community through the Baby Bundles program was such a rewarding experience for our whole class,” dental hygiene student Savannah Templeton said. “We loved that we could add oral hygiene information, which can positively impact the oral health of the parents and children in the Bryan/College Station area.”

Blinn students also participated in the literacy initiative, Reading Day 2021. The virtual story time event featured videos of local community members reading aloud from their favorite books. Made available to elementary-level classrooms from pre-kindergarten through third grade, Blinn students chose titles that focused on dental health care for children.

“Community work is something that I am really passionate about,” student Helen Ransom said. “As someone who is bilingual, I have also discovered a passion for helping those in the Spanish-speaking community that have various dental needs.”

Based at Blinn’s Post Office Center in Bryan, the Dental Hygiene Program trains students to become registered dental hygienists. The program includes instruction at a dental hygiene clinic and highly skilled faculty who closely work with students in classroom and laboratory settings. Upon successful completion of coursework, students receive an Associate of Applied Science degree and are eligible to take the National Board of Dental Hygiene Examination and a regional or state clinical exam.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for dental hygienists is expected to grow 6% between 2019 and 2029. In 2019, the median hourly pay for a dental hygienist was $36.65 per hour or $76,220 per year.

The program also operates its own dental hygiene clinic that provides discounted cleanings and screenings to the public.

For more information about Blinn’s Dental Hygiene Program, visit www.blinn.edu/dental-hygiene. To make an appointment at the clinic, call 979-209-7283 (se habla espanol).

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