CSU celebrates the graduation of 32 new dentists

16 DECEMBER 2013

Charles Sturt University (CSU) will celebrate a significant milestone in rural health on Tuesday 17 December, when 32 new dentists graduate from CSU in Orange.

CSU Dentistry graduate Mr Jake Ball.Charles Sturt University (CSU) will celebrate a significant milestone in rural health on Tuesday 17 December, when 32 new dentists graduate from CSU in Orange.
 
The students are the first to complete the Bachelor of Dental Science, which began in 2009.
 
CSU Vice Chancellor and President Professor Andrew Vann said they would graduate alongside the next generation of rural scientists, teachers, nurses, veterinarians, teachers and more.
 
"The Charles Sturt University dentistry program was created in collaboration with rural dental health experts and the help of the wider profession in response to a real need for dental services in rural and regional Australia," Professor Vann said.
 
 "Australians living in rural areas deserve the same access to dental health services as people living in the cities. We're looking forward to seeing this graduating class, and those in the future, play their part in ensuring the health and wellbeing of our rural communities."
 
 Australian Dental Association NSW Branch CEO Dr Matthew Fisher will be awarded an Honorary Doctor of Health Studies at the ceremony in recognition of his work in supporting the establishment of the CSU dentistry program, and in advancing the cause of rural and regional oral health.
 
Dr Fisher, who lectures in the program on professionalism and compliance, said he would be delighted to receive the award alongside students he had watched develop over the past five years.
 
"These graduates, and those that follow them, will help ensure better access to quality dental services throughout rural and regional Australia," he said.
 
"I hope they go on to have successful careers as professionals, but also to make significant contributions to the communities they will serve."
 
Graduate Mr Jake Ball, originally from Broken Hill, will be one of two dental interns to work at the CSU Dental Clinic in Orange next year and said his long-term goal was to practice in a rural area.
 
"It's a different style of dentistry in the country," Mr Ball said.
 
"In the city there are so many practices that they have to try to distinguish themselves in a business sense. It's about who is open later at night, or what ancillary services they can add on. But in the country it feels more like real dentistry. It's about the patient, and the quality of service."
 
Mr Ball said his experiences as a CSU student providing oral health services with the Royal Flying Doctor Service would stand out among his memories of his time at the University.
 
"We visited communities like Collarenebri, Bourke, Lightning Ridge, and Goodooga, where the facilities weren't as advanced and many patients had oral health issues that hadn't been recently addressed," he said.
 
"It was a great experience, and a great opportunity to make a real difference in people's lives."

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