The Marquette University School of Dentistry expansion project is moving forward, with construction expected to begin Sept. 4.
“After many years of planning, fundraising and collaboration, our vision for the expansion will become a reality,” said President Scott R. Pilarz, S.J. “We’ve been the state’s dental partner for the past 118 years. We look forward to continuing to serve Wisconsin’s citizens in our clinics, educating the next generation of dentists and working with partners statewide.”
Consisting of a lower level and first and second floors, the expansion will give the school the opportunity to increase its graduating class size to 100 students each year, and will include a clinic housing 24 operatories, a larger faculty practice clinic, additional classroom space and a research lab. The expansion, which has been led by Dean William Lobb, will also allow for the existing simulation lab to be expanded by 24 stations to accommodate additional students. The approximately 45,000 square-foot addition will open in fall 2013.
“This expansion will allow the Marquette dental school to stay on the leading edge of dental education,” Lobb said. “Thanks to a nationally recognized curriculum that puts our students directly in contact with patients early in their training, we’ll be able to make an even greater impact on the thousands of people in need through outreach clinics around the state.”
The State of Wisconsin committed $8 million in its 2011-2013 biennial budget which Marquette matched with gifts from Delta Dental of Wisconsin, alumni Dr. Rick Kushner and Dr. Jeff Moos, and hundreds of other generous individual donors and corporations.
“We are grateful for our longstanding relationship with the State of Wisconsin, and for the bi-partisan support we’ve received over the years,” Lobb said. “In addition to the hundreds of very generous dentists who have stepped forward to help with this campaign, Marquette is fortunate for the support of the Wisconsin Dental Association, who has endorsed this project with their members.”
All third- and fourth-year students serve on clinical rotations under the supervision of a dental faculty member in community clinics in Eau Claire, Stevens Point, Appleton and Beloit, in addition to three clinics in Milwaukee. Each year, more than 27,000 unduplicated patients from 66 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties receive dental care at a Marquette-affiliated clinic.
“Over the past decade, Marquette has taken a pro-active role in creating opportunities for future practitioners to settle in more rural and underserved areas of Wisconsin,” Lobb said. “The experiences our students have during clinical rotations in these areas give them a greater awareness of clinical opportunities to serve such communities.”