The Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) is a free summer enrichment program focused on improving access to information and resources for college students interested in the health professions. SHPEP’s goal is to strengthen the academic proficiency and career development of students underrepresented in the health professions and prepare them for a successful application and matriculation to health professions schools. These students include, but are not limited to, individuals who identify as African American/Black, American Indian and Alaska Native and Hispanic/Latino, and who are from communities of socioeconomic and educational disadvantage. SHPEP is part of an effort by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in partnership with various universities. The University of Iowa College of Dentistry is proud to provide students an opportunity to explore dentistry. Selected University of Iowa SHPEP participants are guaranteed one interview with the University of Iowa College of Dentistry within three years of their SHPEP participation date.

A D3 student helps a Shpep student through an exercise.

Some activities that students may have the potential to participate in are:

  • Shadowing dental students or dental residents
  • Learn about all 9 dental specialties from faculty specialists
  • Interactive presentation about the Admissions process
  • 1:1 meeting with the Dean of Students, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion officer or the Director of Dental Student Admissions
  • Lunches with guest speakers
  • Presentations from dentists in various practice settings
  • Learn about the roles of expanded function dental team members
  • Watch a digital dentistry demonstration
Instructor helping a SHPEP student

Examples of Hands-on activities:

  • Make a dental impression
  • Pour stone into the impression to make a dental cast
  • Waxing up a tooth
  • Placing a composite (tooth coloring fillings) in plastic teeth
A student works carefully on a tooth during Shpep 2023

2023 SHPEP Program

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Learn more about the Summer Health Professions Education Program at the University of Iowa. Contact Daniela Sanchez with specific questions.

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