Local

September 27, 2013

Red Cross helps dental profession

Senior Airman Ana King, 56th Dental Squadron dental assistant/oral preventative assistant, cleans the teeth of Staff Sgt. Natalie Lopez, 56th Force Support Squadron customer service technician, during a routine cleaning Aug. 13 at the Luke Air Force Base Dental Squadron. King sees approximately eight patients a day and performs dental exams and cleanings.

A journey that started almost a year ago came to completion Sept. 19 when two Red Cross volunteers finished their training with the 56th Dental Squadron.

“The two Red Cross volunteers, Alexandra Chopek and Lupe Dorantes, have been an integral part of the 56th DS team,” said Capt. Elizabeth McCourt, 56th DS dentist.

Their journey started in December of 2012 when the Red Cross sent out a message through their website seeking volunteers.

“I submitted my paperwork in December,” Dorantes said. “In January I had an interview and I was accepted. I have seen this program before and wanted to participate. I asked about it when we first moved to Luke but it wasn’t available. So when I saw the email from the Airmen and Family Readiness Center I signed up.”

The volunteer opportunity put them in the Luke dental clinic for 1,000 hours of chair-side training.

“The volunteers began learning the basics of assisting in restorative dentistry, or fillings,” McCourt said. “Once this skill was mastered they moved on to more in-depth procedures in specialties such as periodontics, oral surgery, endodontics and prosthodontics.”

The program was designed to prepare people for entry-level dental assisting positions.

“This was a great opportunity for me,” Dorantes said. “I learned so much. After I take my x-ray exam later and I pass I will be able to get a job working at a dentist office. Being a military wife this kind of job is good because no matter where we go there will be a dental office, in the states or overseas.”

Being a dental assistant means Dorantes learned to set up before a dental procedure and take down after.

“The hardest part for me was learning all the dental tools,” Dorantes said. “Every single instrument has a different name and we had to learn them all in order to give the dentist the right tool. But by the end it was easy, I had it down.”

During the time the volunteers were at the dental clinic their help and didn’t go unnoticed.

“The 56th Dental Squadron itself has also greatly benefited from their hard work and dedication and we want to thank them for all their selfless contributions to Luke’s mission,” McCourt said. “In a time when assistant manning has been low, the two volunteers frequently acted as full time assistants contributing to the productivity and efficacy of the clinic as a whole. During the eight-month program, both volunteers played a fundamental role in treating more than 1,600 patients.”

Because this one went so well the dental clinic is planning on doing the Red Cross dental volunteer program again in 2014.

“I would recommend to any at-home spouse that this is a great opportunity,” Dorantes said. “This is a free program, I say go for it. This kind of thing in the civilian world is very expensive. Every mother or at-home military wife who is wondering what to do, this can pay off better than working at a restaurant.”

If interested in the Red Cross dental volunteer program, contact Master Sgt. Mary Williams at 623-856-1130.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
DT_JTC0216

Supreme allied commander comes home

Gen. Philip Breedlove, left, NATO supreme allied commander, Europe, visited Luke Air Force Base Sept. 12. Brig. Gen. Scott Pleus, right, 56th Fighter Wing commander, briefed the general on Luke’s evolving mission to train F-3...
 
 
Senior Airman Grace Lee

Command post chief averts potential disaster

Senior Airman Grace Lee Capt. George Normandin, 56th Fighter Wing Command Post chief, received the Aviation Safety Well Done Award Sept. 2, presented by Brig. Gen. Scott Pleus, 56th FW commander. Normandin took control of an F-...
 
 

You are what you eat

“You are what you eat.” This is a generic statement or a notion. It implies that if you eat healthy, you will be healthy. But how true is this in the world today? What we eat, drink, wear, drive and buy is often an attempt to construct a social identity. It lets others know who...
 

 

Knowledge equals power

The phrase “knowledge is power” is said to originate from Sir Francis Bacon in 1597. Personally, I remember learning the phrase from the old television show “School House Rock” theme song. The key idea behind the phrase is the more knowledge you accumulate, the more “power” you will have. Here is a simple breakdown: knowledge...
 
 
Senior Airman
MARCY COPELAND

EOD Airman changed for good by life experiences

Senior AirmanMARCY COPELAND Tech. Sgt. David Gerig’s, 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Explosive Ordnance Disposal team chief, first assignment after technical school was Kadena Air Base, Japan. The challenges in life are often w...
 
 

News Briefs September 19, 2014

CFC kick-off The 56th Fighter Wing Combined Federal Campaign kick-off charity fair is 9 a.m. Monday in Bldg. 1130 auditorium. Learn about the 2014 campaign ‘Serving Our Country. Supporting Our Community.’ and visit with local charities. For more information, call Maj. Jennifer Preyer-Bonton at 623-856-7144. Hispanic Heritage Month National Hispanic Heritage Month began Monday and...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin