Our Programs

Dental Therapy

Dental Therapy

Brightening the smiles of your community!

The vision is for Alaska Native people to receive culturally appropriate, excellent, oral healthcare in the communities where they live, with an emphasis on rural communities. The mission is to educate dental therapists to meet the oral health care needs of Alaskan Native people living in rural communities.

The Alaska Dental Therapy Educational Program is operated in partnership with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC). This program supports health providers in the dental profession by offering academic credentials in addition to the certification. Those credentials facilitate the transition into higher level career pathways, such as a baccalaureate degree, or degrees in dental hygiene and dentistry.

Dental therapy students will complete the didactic (classroom) and preclinical phase in Anchorage. The clinical phase is completed in Anchorage/Bethel and includes travel to remote villages to provide oral health care. The course of study is equivalent to three academic years.

Upon graduation, Dental Health Aide Therapists are typically employed with a Tribal Health Organization and will provide clinical and educational services in rural communities throughout the state.

Degree Outcomes

  • Competently and ethically provide the public with evidence-based dental therapy care using effective decision making within the scope of practice outlined in the CHAP CB Standards and Procedures document (see www.akchap.org/html/chapcb.html).
  • Integrate Alaska Native/American Indian knowledge, values and culture into business practice.
  • Communicate effectively with patients, peers, the public and other health professionals using verbal, non-verbal and written language.
  • Competently assess, plan, implement and evaluate individual and community oral disease prevention and therapy programs.
  • Apply critical thinking skills to investigate, interpret, and communicate issues involving the profession, the practice, the community, and the patient.

Admission Requirements & Prerequisites

Those interested in learning more about this training program are encouraged to contact the Program Chair, Dr. Mary Williard, at mary.williard@ilisagvik.edu.

Programs Offered

  • Certificate, Dental Health Aide
  • Associate of Applied Science, Dental Health Therapy

Potential Careers

Just a few of the potential career paths: Dental Assistant, Primary Dental Health Aide, Expanded Function Dental Health Aide, and Dental Health Aide Therapist.  Begin Today!