The Dental Hygiene Program at the College of New Caledonia (CNC) is back. The diploma program was controversially suspended for two years, as the College revised the curriculum and tuition fees.
“The cost of delivery was so high that it really impacted our deficit,” says Henry Reiser, the President of CNC. “As a result [of the suspension], we were able to restructure our program.”
The curriculum has been updated. Students will get more hours in pre-clinical, allowing them to see patients 10 weeks earlier. New equipment has also been installed at CNC’s Dental Clinic.
“We just completed our digitization of our Dental Clinic,” says Karen Lange, a Dental Studies Instructor. “This past summer, we have the addition of completely digitized X-ray equipment. We have a new a Panorex machine, some digital sensors. That enables us to teach and educate and provide experiences for our students that are in line with what they will expect in private practice.”
Those aren’t the only changes, though. Tuition has gone up to just under $21,000. The total cost to take the two year program is now just over $28,700.
“I can’t compare that [2017 tuition to 2015 tuition], because it would be like comparing apples to oranges,” says Dr. Glenda Vardy Dell, the Dean of CNC’s School of Health Sciences. “What I will tell you is that we are the third lowest in the province in terms of what the tuition rates are. There are four programs and we are the third lowest. We are anticipating those programs are looking at increasing their tuition as well.”
Even with the increase in cost to students, the College had no trouble with recruitment.
“We have opened up 18 seats, and filled 14 seats,” says Dr. Vardy Dell. “There are jobs. I think that is the piece that is very helpful to people, is that there’s no point in taking a program if you are not sure there is going to be a job. The program has always had a solid reputation.”
With the return of the program will come more low-cost preventative oral care services offered at CNC’s Dental Clinic. The Dental Hygiene students will start to see patients at the beginning of January. The Clinic is always accepting more patients.