Press release: Dental Program students help provide day of free dental care to seniors


Kathy Mullins

Executive Deputy to the President and Board Liaison



Dental Program students help provide day of free dental care to seniors


December  14, 2012  GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Students, faculty and staff in Grand Rapids Community College’s Dental Programs teamed up with area agencies to provide a free day of preventative dental care for senior citizens on December 14.

Seniors received preventative dental care – X-rays, cleanings and an exam – in GRCC’s dental clinic, located in room 301 Cook Academic Hall, 143 Bostwick NE.  About 70 students in the Dental Program greeted and admitted patients, and worked with dentists, dental hygienists and dental assistants on the x-rays, cleanings and exams.

“This project provides much needed dental care to those in need within our community, while allowing our Dental Program students valuable hands-on experience working with senior s and dental professionals,” said Eve Sidney, director of GRCC’s Dental Auxiliary Programs.

The Area Agency on Aging for Western Michigan identified 45 low-income seniors who need dental work but have no regular access to it. Dentists screened them to make sure that preexisting medical conditions were taken into consideration before the patients underwent dental work. Throughout the day, dentists identified seniors who need further dental care, which will be provided at a later date by Cherry Street Health Services.

A total of 101 volunteers were involved, including six area dentists, 15 hygienists and six dental assistants. GRCC partnered with Senior Neighbors, Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan Care Management, United Methodist Community House, the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired, and Native American Family Services  to hold this event.

GRCC’s Dental Program also runs a clinic that regularly provides preventative services such as cleanings, fluoride treatments, X-rays and sealants to the public for a nominal fee. For more information on the clinic, visit or call 616-234-4237 to schedule an appointment.

Grand Rapids Community College, established in 1914, offers opportunities for over 30,000 students annually in degree courses, certification and training programs, workshops and personal enrichment classes. GRCC holds classes on the downtown Grand Rapids campus as well as several additional locations throughout Kent and Ottawa counties.