Dental assisting graduate recalls volunteerism as highlight

Brenda Ware, Cindi Soderholm, Kim Bland --Soderholm won Excellence Award dental assisting June 2017

(Bradenton, FL—June 14, 2017)   The Dental Assisting Technology and Management program at Manatee Technical College graduated 16 students on June 14.

“This wasn’t just a program,” said class speaker Gretchen Freeman, “this was a year of our lives that we made a difference and we bettered ourselves.  I’ll never forget the day a woman asked to hug me because I was there reassuring her while assisting the doctor in extracting eight of her teeth that were broken and decayed.  She was just so thankful to be out of the pain she had dealt with every day for 10 years.”

The MTC Dental Assisting students were instrumental is assisting doctors at the Remote Area Medical (RAM) event at MTC earlier in the school year.  The students performed volunteer dental assisting at other events as well, including Passport to Wellness for migrant children and the We Care dental project for children.

“I not only helped someone in need, I learned I could make a difference to a complete stranger,” Freeman shared.  “Helping our community with volunteerism and sharing talents we never knew we had are experiences that can’t be learned from a book.”

The MTC Award of Excellence sponsored by the Manatee Dental Society went to Cindi Soderholm for having the highest GPA.  In addition, Soderholm and Jessica Kretzer earned the Terrissa Kay Kenney Wilson Memorial Award for Perfect Attendance.  Instructors’ Choice Recognition Awards went to Jennifer Aparicio, Gretchen Freeman, and Heather Thielen.

Fourteen of the students are graduating as Certified Dental Assistants (CDA).   All are graduating with the certification of Expanded Functions Dental Auxiliary, which allows them to assist with restorative dentistry.

To date, all of the graduates have received job offers, and six have accepted employment.

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