Volume 9 • 2022 • Issue 6

School pride When the chief medical officer of Nova Scotia closed dental clinics in March 2020, our faculty was one of the first three emergency clinics in the province to treat patients in our new, hospital-grade surgical rooms. The emergency team also developed a set of COVID-19 protocols and procedures, which have been widely shared with clinics across Atlantic Canada and beyond. Our faculty and students quickly made the transition to online teaching and learning, and we had our students back in the clinic as quickly as possible, enabling them to be promoted and graduate successfully throughout the pandemic. We are also proud of the equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) work our faculty is doing, our highly soughtafter post-graduate programs, and our soon-to-be launched pediatric and special needs clinic. Challenges The biggest challenges facing dental education in Canada are cuts to university funding while trying to increase access to affordable oral health care, the cost of education for students, covering the volume of the curriculum within the allotted time, attracting and retaining faculty and clinical staff, and improving diversity among our students, faculty, and staff. Evolution of dental education Digital dentistry and other technological changes are rapidly transforming many aspects of oral health care and education. The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of virtual and online lectures and other new methods of teaching. There is also a more holistic, patient-focused approach to clinical teaching. Over the next 5–10 years, we expect to see more individualistic learning, greater integration with other health care professions, the expansion and development of outreach initiatives, and more efforts to improve access to oral health care for underserved populations. School pride At the end of two terms as head of the Faculty of Dentistry, hampered by an unprecedented pandemic, we are proud of the completion of a major cycle of renovations and modernization of the physical and material infrastructure of most of the facility. With an investment of more than $10 million, the school is now equipped with modern clinics, simulation labs, research labs and classrooms, all of which are up-to-date and equipped with contemporary multimedia equipment and technology. These facilities will attract the best students and faculty talent and provide a quality training and learning environment that promotes academic excellence and personal well-being. We completed a major overhaul of our DMD program by adopting a program-based approach. This approach aims to develop an integrated program of study based on a common vision among stakeholders, and continuous improvement of the program structure. This project has taken more than six years to build and implement; we recently graduated our second class that has been educated within the new paradigm. The biggest challenges facing dental education in Canada are cuts to university funding while trying to increase access to affordable oral health care. Dalhousie University Université Laval Dr. Benjamin Davis, dean of the Faculty of Dentistry Dr. Fatiha Chandad, vicedean of graduate studies at the Faculty of Dentistry CONTINUEDP. 25 23 Issue 6 | 2022 |