Campus News

Campus Walk: UK College of Dentistry

Video Produced by UK Marketing and Brand Strategy. To view captions for this video, push play and click on the CC icon in the bottom right hand corner of the screen.  If using a mobile device, click on the "thought bubble" in the same area. Special thanks to UK College of Dentistry for footage used in this video. 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 13, 2019) – The University of Kentucky’s College of Dentistry is a national leader with its unique curriculum that offers students a variety of opportunities to change lives.

As technology has changed and advanced, so have the ways dentists treat patients. UK’s College of Dentistry is keeping up with those changes by offering a state-of-the-art digital dentistry program that gives students a hands-on opportunity to learn, while also keeping traditional dentistry at the forefront of student education.

Dentistry students are able to gain hands-on experience through a simulation lab and faculty and staff-guided lessons with the more than forty 3D scanners on campus. Students also work directly with patients through an on-campus clinic.

“This college was founded in 1962 on three premises: we want our students to be biologically oriented, technically capable and socially sensitive. Today, those are still the parameters of what we think make a good dentist,” said Jeffrey Okeson, interim dean of the UK College of Dentistry. “We know that our graduates carry that philosophy with them, wherever they practice across the world.”

In this campus walk, go inside UK College of Dentistry with Okeson to learn about the challenging, but rewarding curriculum that will help students to one day change peoples’ lives – one smile at a time.  

About Jeffrey Okeson

Okeson was named interim dean of the UK College of Dentistry in September of 2019. Okeson has been a full-time faculty member at UK for 45 years. He currently serves as the Orofacial Pain program director. He founded the UK Orofacial Pain Clinic in 1977. He previously served as chair of the Department of Oral Health Science. During his tenure at UK, Okeson has received numerous awards. He has been honored with UK’s campus-wide Great Teacher Award, the Provost’s Distinguished Service Professorship and received the first-ever Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Dentistry.

If there is someone on campus you would like to see featured in a future Campus Walk, email us.

This is a photo of UK Interim College of Dentistry Dean Jeffrey Okeson.
This is a photo of students with the Hispanic Student Dental Association learning and working with patients at the Mission Clinic.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.