Bringing Smiles Dental Enrichment Program

The Bringing Smiles Dental Enrichment Program (BSDEP) supports and prepares students who are underrepresented in the dental profession for successful application and matriculation into dental school.

The future oral health workforce must be equipped with the knowledge and experience to improve access and outcomes for underserved populations. The gap in oral health disparities continues to grow, while diversity amongst dental health professionals remains relatively stagnant. In a 2016 survey from the American Dental Education Association, only 15.2% of dental school applicants were from underrepresented minority (URM) backgrounds.

In 2018, the Department of Pediatric Dentistry at NYU College of Dentistry established the Bringing Smiles Dental Enrichment Program to help increase diversity amongst dental health professionals.

Program Components

BSDEP accepts 5 interns per semester. Due to the impact of COVID-19, ALL aspects of the Spring 2021 program will be held virtually.

  1. Community-Based Clinical Experience - interns participate in the “Bringing Smiles to NYC Schools” program, a school-based comprehensive dental program located within NYC public schools.
  2. Mentorship - each intern will be connected to both a faculty mentor and a dental student mentor whom they will meet with throughout the semester. 
  3. Seminars and Application Preparation - interns will participate in a series of seminars and professional development experiences to prepare them for dental school. 
  4. Research Opportunities - interns will be connected to potential research opportunity at the college.

Candidate Qualifications

  • Priority is given to applicants from underrepresented minority (URM) backgrounds as defined by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s definition – an individual from a racial and/or ethnic group considered inadequately represented in a specific profession relative to the representation of that racial and/or ethnic group in the general population. Note: For the purposes of the health professions, HRSA considers individuals from the following racial and ethnic backgrounds underrepresented:
    • American Indian or Alaska Native
    • Black or African American
    • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander
    • Hispanic (all races).
  • Strong interest in dentistry and working with underserved populations
  • Strong organizational and communication skills required
  • Must be located within the NYC area (able to easily commute into the city) 
  • Juniors, Seniors Pre-Dental/ Pre-Health candidates are welcomed and preferred

Faculty Program Director

Rose Amable, DDS
Clinical Associate Professor

Dr. Michelle Goldstein
Dr. Lorel Burns
Dr. Divya Khera
Dr. Cheryline Pezzullo
Dr. Leslie Smithey
Dr. Teemar Carey

Student Members range from D1 – D4s and commit to varying levels and hours of mentorship each week. If you are a dental student or resident interested in becoming a mentor, please contact the program coordinator Samantha at sshrager@nyu.edu.

Samantha Shrager

FAQs

You must be at least a sophomore in college (second year) to apply for this internship. Post- baccalaureate students and students taking a gap year before applying to dental school are also encouraged to apply.

No, you do not have to be an NYU student to apply however all interns must obtain a valid NYU ID prior to their first day.

Due to the virtual nature of the Spring 2021 internship, applicants may be geographically located anywhere in the country. However, in future semesters, applicants must be in the tristate area and able to commute to NYC one day per week.  

No, there is no minimum required GPA to apply to this program. All applicants will
be evaluated holistically.

BSDEP follows the Health Resources and Services Administration’s definition of an Underrepresented Minority (URM) – an individual from a racial and/or ethnic group considered inadequately represented in a specific profession relative to the representation of that racial and/or ethnic group in the general population. Note: For the purposes of the health professions, HRSA considers individuals from the following racial and ethnic backgrounds underrepresented:

  • American Indian or Alaska Native
  • Black or African American
  • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander
  • Hispanic (all races).

Yes, but you must apply separately for each individual semester.

It is required that BSDEP interns attend all listed sessions.

  

Program Partners

Enrichment Program Gallery

Bringing Smiles Dental Enrichment Program 2019