MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – David Felton, D.D.S., M.S., the new dean of the West Virginia University School of Dentistry, detailed his vision for the future in his first State of the School address.

“WVU has a long history of training very competent clinical dentists, dental hygienists and graduate residents, and our faculty and staff are highly dedicated to the students and to excellence in teaching,” Dr. Felton said. “But I believe we can accomplish bigger and better things in the future, and my goal is to do just that.”

Among his plans for achieving that goal are finishing the school’s strategic plan, improving development efforts, increasing research, recruiting and retaining more faculty and staff and adopting best business practices.

Felton would also like to see the School of Dentistry expand physically into a new, larger, state-of-the-art facility. In terms of program growth, he noted the need for new graduate programs in pediatric dentistry and periodontology, increasing the size of the Doctor of Dental Surgery and Dental Hygiene classes and the development of clinical and translational research initiatives as potential areas for expansion.

In addition, Felton’s plan includes full implementation of electronic health records and moving toward digital dentistry for both the clinical and educational enterprises. “As a School, we need to provide our students with the highest level of clinical training and diagnostic skills on the newest techniques and the newest equipment,” he said.

While some of his initiatives will take time to complete, Felton wants to start working on them as soon as possible. “Together I believe these plans comprise the School of Dentistry’s roadmap to success,” he said. “And, by taking these steps, we will further solidify our position in the forefront of oral healthcare for the state of West Virginia.”

Felton delivered the address to faculty and staff on Sept. 8.

For more information: Angela Jones, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
asj: 09-14-11