Inside Dental Technology
Time to Act
Mahatma Ghandi once said, “You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.” Everyday we all make decisions to act on situations that we know must change. We usually don’t know what the end result of our decision to act will be, but we do know that it was the right thing to do at that point in time. For several years now, the Foundation for Dental Laboratory Technology has been acting to rally segments of the industry to help support and preserve our 19 accredited dental technology programs and has been doing a remarkable job, given that the board is comprised of laboratory-owner volunteers.
Manufacturers, dental laboratories, laboratory owners, and individual technicians have all donated money or equipment to help keep these programs healthy and relevant. And certainly, when speaking with program directors, the grant money they receive is very much appreciated. With it they are replacing broken or out-of-date equipment, new materials, even training new faculty. But when many of the healthiest educational programs in our industry are working with an annual budget of only $11,000 for 20+ students, and the cost of relevancy today is ten times that amount, then a $15,000 or $5,000 grant can only go so far. Substantially more funds are needed to bring these programs up-to-date and graduate students who are prepared for today’s dental laboratory realities. We need to coalesce as an industry and take action to help provide the Foundation with funds that will help make a real difference.
Knowing this, IDT has made the decision to act. This year, IDT is helping sponsor the Foundation Race for the Future fundraising event, held in conjunction with the ITU Triathlon in Chicago this summer (see our news story on page 8). I will be participating as a racer. Now, I’ve never participated in any sort of competitive race event, and as such, I have elicited the help of two younger and more athletically inclined team members to take on the running and swimming legs of the race. Joining me for our sprint relay team, Women in Dental Technology, will be Barbara Warner Wojdan, CDT, President Knight Dental Studio and Leslie Melvin, Senior Product Manager, Heraeus Kulzer. IDT’s Vice President and Publisher, Valerie Berger, will also be taking on the challenge.
It is time that we all take a stand and invest in our most important assets—our schools and students—for they are the future of this industry. If you can join us in Chicago at the end of June and want to participate in the Triathlon, sign up at chicago.triathlon.org and let Kasey Patton at the NADL (firstname.lastname@example.org) know of your fundraising efforts. If you can’t join us, then please make a difference, act now, and donate money to support one or more of the athletes or teams competing to raise funds for the Foundation by visiting dentallabfoundation.org/donate-online.cfm. If you would like to donate but don’t know anyone who is participating, then I urge you to target your donation to the Women in Dental Technology relay team. We may not come in first, but we plan on making a difference!