February 21, 2013 -- In 2010 the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry and Gladys Benerd School of Education collaborated with Kuwait University Faculty of Dentistry to launch the International General Dentist Educator (IGDE) program, an opportunity designed for international scholars looking to further their dental education and eventually become dental educators. The program brings students from abroad to Pacific for 5 years of advanced training and graduate work. Currently there are two students, Drs. Fawaz Alzoubi and Hanadi Al Enezi, both from Kuwait University, going through the program. The IGDE program beginning stems from the Dugoni School's goals of growing its international relationships; advancing the future of dental education; and improving global oral health. In the case of Kuwait University, the two scholars chosen to participate received a scholarship to go toward the program costs. Upon completion, they will be academically qualified to teach and practice at Kuwait University.
Participants are required to undergo clinical and didactic training as well as complete a thesis project at Pacific. Clinical education is provided under the two-year Advanced Education in General Dentistry program leading to a clinical certificate upon completion of both years. Didactic education is provided under the two-year graduate program leading to a Master's Degree in Professional Education and Leadership. The final year of the program consists of completing a thesis project, and the teaching practicum in didactic, pre-clinical and clinical education of doctoral students.
Because the program is still relatively new, the two Kuwait University participants have been able to provide feedback and suggestions to administrators for modifications and improvements. As the program continues to grow, further changes may be made to allow each participating scholar to get the most out of his or her experience. Upon completion of the program both scholars have plans to return to Kuwait University as dental educators.
"I feel that I have grown both as a clinician and an educator," said Alzoubi about his experiences in the program to date. "I plan to become an influential educational leader in the field of dentistry and health care in general. I am certain I will accomplish this goal with the never-ending, generous and constant support from the University of the Pacific."
While the program was initially designed for scholars from Kuwait University, other universities have shown interest in having scholars participate in the program. Pacific is accepting applications from prospective students at all non-U.S. universities. Students interested in participating in the IGDE program are asked to submit the application form; personal statement; Dental Curriculum Vitae (CV); TOEFL (Test Of English as a Foreign Language) scores; transcripts that have been translated and evaluated; and a letter from sponsoring government or educational institution supporting the candidate and the cost of the five-year program.
Questions and applications may be directed to Graduate Admissions Advisor Gloria Sue at 415.929.6677. More details are available on the IGDE program's web page.