Open wide: new Riverside dental lab is state-of-the-art


One of six new dental chairs at Riverside (photo by Kassidy Scheppler)

One of six new dental chairs at Riverside (photo by Kassidy Scheppler)

By Kassidy Scheppler
Byline Staff

Rogue Community College has new state-of-the-art equipment for the Dental Assisting program located in Room 22 of Building A on Riverside campus.

“The new lab is fantastic,” said lead dental instructor Robert Felthousen in an RCC press release. “Now we will be able to cover many more procedures and concepts and provide more hands-on learning.”

“It is very cool to have students in lab here at RCC every Friday,” said Susan Painsello, Training Service Coordinator for RCC’s Dental Assistance program. “In the past we had to rent dental offices when they were closed, so until now our lab classes were limited and held on Saturdays. Our new facility has allowed us to double the lab sessions in our program.”

The new equipment was purchased from A-DEC in Newberg and built here in Oregon.

The Carl Perkins grant covered most of the expenses for the new lab equipment, which totaled about $180,000. New equipment includes six new chairs with x-ray capabilities, all of which were ready for the start of fall term. The Carl Perkins is a federal grant to help community colleges   with the cost of equipment for new or expanded programs.

The dental program has a one-year certificate program.

“We have six working dental operatories that provide our students the ability to train, hands-on, with state-of-the-art equipment,” Painsello said. “Students now have lab classes weekly for all four terms of the program.”

RCC also has a partnership with other dental offices in the Rogue Valley for students to have hands-on practicum training. All students must have 270 hours plus of practicum training. The program begins in the fall, they start with between 24-28 students. Currently the program has 27 students enrolled.

“We hope to also be able to offer continuing dental education in the new facility,” said Painsello.


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