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University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry Professor Lectures in China
Dr. Robert Manasse, Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Orthodontics, University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) College of Dentistry, recently visited China to provide lectures at universities in various cities.
Dr. Manasse’s lecture topics were, “Awareness:
The lectures were presented only in orthodontics departments to faculty, master’s, and PhD students. Dr. Manasse and Dr. Hao presented these three-to-four hour lectures in English, with PowerPoint visuals. Often, Dr. Hao would explain and translate Dr. Manasse’s lecture in Chinese.
“We would lecture for a day,” Dr. Manasse explained, “and the next day the particular university we were visiting provided a graduate student who spoke English very well. The university would provide a driver and a nice automobile. The student would tell the driver where to go for a tour of the area. We would then visit important local sites. We would go to cultural museums, excavations and learn about the history of the particular city we were visiting.”
Traveling by train and bus from Hong Kong to Beijing with intermediate stops, Dr. Manasse got to experience how China had grown in the last decades and observe its modernization. Dr. Manasse and Dr. Hao, both being marathon runners, also would run through the streets in China on their early morning runs, and saw interesting and unusual sights. For example, they saw a Muslim mosque and discovered that there were 60,000 Muslims in a particular neighborhood in the city of Wuhan in what they believed to be a country mostly composed of Buddhists. They saw astonishing relics, such as the Terra Cotta Soldiers in Xi’an, as well as modern marvels such as the Beijing Olympic Stadium and Natatorium.
More importantly, they learned how different dental education and practices were from those in the U.S. In China, there are two different paths one can take to work in dentistry, Dr. Manasse explained. One will take a person from high school to college for three years to become a dental technician or dental nurse. The other will take a person from high school to college for four years of didactic and lab courses, and one year in a dental clinical internship rotation to become a dentist.
When students become dentists, they work in hospitals as there are very few private practices in China, Dr. Manasse explained, noting there is an access to care problem as China has the largest population in the world but not a lot of dentists. In fact, there is one dentist for every 40,000 people. China does not concentrate on preventative care, but rather focuses on acute care, he concluded.
(By Lucia Gonzalez)
The University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry is celebrating its 100th year as a college of the University of Illinois in 2013 with special events throughout the year under the theme “A Proud Past, A Brilliant Future.”