Dental hygiene students travel to Mission of Mercy dentistry event

A half dozen representatives from Kellogg Community College made their way to Saginaw Valley State University earlier this month to attend the Mission of Mercy dentistry event.

The event — the first held in Michigan — was held June 7 and 8 to provide free dental care to people in need.

According to an article about the event from the Michigan Dental Association Foundation, which runs the event in conjunction with the Michigan Dental Association, MDA dentists treated 1,136 people with a total of 5,493 procedures during the event.

About half of the procedures were for extensive treatments — including oral surgery and restorative care — in addition to procedures like X-rays,  cleanings, fillings and extractions. Patients also received information about preventive dental care, including the importance of good daily oral hygiene and a healthy diet.

The MDAF article says $903,000 in donated care was provided during the event, which was attended by KCC Student American Dental Hygienists’ Association members Brenna Allen, Laney Draper, Heidi Heers, Michelle Render, Morgan Wernowsky and student club adviser/dental hygiene instructor Bridget Korpela.

Korpela said she heard about the event at an MDA meeting and wanted her students to be able to see the large mobile dentistry process firsthand.

“Students were also able to see firsthand that access to care is a problem not just in our area, but in other areas of the state, as well,” Korpela said. “Also of benefit for our students was the opportunity to give back, as they were able to provide patient education to participants that day.”

We posted more than a dozen photos from the event — including the one featured above — on our Facebook page this morning, courtesy of KCC’s SADHA President Heidi Heers.The SADHA group is open to dental hygiene students who are attending KCC or any other accredited school of dental/oral hygiene. Their purpose is to promote the art of dental hygiene science.

For more information about the SADHA, contact adviser Bridget Korpela at or visit For more information about the Dental Hygiene Program at KCC, visit