On a recent trip to rural Mexico, Iowa dental students and faculty provide dental care to children in schools and orphanages in the area.
Thursday, April 20, 2023

This spring break, a team of six dental students and two faculty provided dental screenings, fluoride varnish, and dental education to nearly 1,000 children in schools and orphanages in rural Mexico.

Alanna Bram (D3), Lyndi Heldenbrand (D2), Mariah Oyen (D2), Krayton Schnepf (D3), Isabel Wolf (D2), and Jackie Yeh (D2), along with Amy Lesch, assistant professor of pediatric dentistry, and Jen Sukalski, visiting assistant professor of preventive and community dentistry, traveled to Xicotepec, Mexico, as part of an interdisciplinary service-learning course.

Coordinated with the support of Rotary International (districts in Iowa and Xicotepec), the course has developed long-standing service projects with the UI Colleges of Dentistry and Public Health.

The dental group had an amazing opportunity to work closely with several local dentists and nursing students; working as a team to provide preventive dental services and learning from each other’s experiences. Through these partnerships, follow-up dental care will be provided to children with urgent need by the local dentists.

In addition to providing dental services, the dental team also experienced several other educational activities in Xicotepec—touring a local health clinic, learning about dental education in Mexico, visiting local monuments and museums, and enjoying the wonderful food!

Please join us on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, from 6:00–7:00 p.m. at the College of Public Health, room N110 CPHB (reception to follow) to celebrate and hear about the student’s experiences.