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LECOM School of Dental Medicine Opens in Grand Fashion

Ribbon-cutting ceremony officially opens the $52 million facility in Bradenton, FL
Manatee County Commissioner Vanessa Baugh, Willis A. Smith Construction Company Vice President Warren Simonds, LECOM Board of Trustees Chairman Michael Visnosky, Esq., LECOM School of Dental Medicine Dean Robert Hirsch, DDS and LECOM President and CEO John M. Ferretti, DO, cut the ribbon signifying the grand opening of the LECOM School of Dental Medicine in Bradenton, FL.

Bradenton, FL – Administrators and trustees from the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine joined with local, state and federal leaders for the grand opening ceremony of the LECOM School of Dental Medicine.

The LECOM School of Dental Medicine became the third dental school in Florida when it opened on July 16, 2012 to an inaugural class of 100 students in Bradenton. John M. Ferretti, D.O., LECOM President and CEO,  led members of the College Board of Trustees and local community leaders in a ribbon-cutting ceremony that officially opens the $52 million state-of-the-art School of Dental Medicine.

“LECOM teamed with its partners in Manatee County governance to establish this school and to carry forth the visionary mission as a leader in health care education,” said Dr. Ferretti. “It is the fullest expectation of the founders that the current and future needs of dental health will be served by the professionals educated and trained at the LECOM School of Dental Medicine.”

U.S. Congressman Vern Buchanan was a featured speaker at the grand opening ceremony for the LECOM School of Dental Medicine.

U.S. Congressman Vern Buchanan lauded LECOM as a “world-class institution”; Florida Dental Association Trustee Rudy T. Liddell, DMD welcomed LECOM as the third dental school in the state of Florida and Manatee County Commissioner Vanessa Baugh praised the professionalism of LECOM’s students.

In January, the state-of-the-art LECOM dental patient clinic opened. Students, under the guidance of faculty members, have been providing full denture services at a reduced cost to the public.

Part of LECOM’s community service efforts involves collaboration with Turning Points – the Bill Galvano One-Stop Center. LECOM has provided over $10,000 in denture and laboratory services for One-Stop Center homeless clients. Comprehensive dental care will be available to the public in March 2014. Within four years, the school will enroll 400 students.

LECOM has invested $52 million to bring the dental school to Manatee County. This includes building construction and the highly technical, state-of-the art classrooms and laboratories required to properly prepare the next generation of dentists.

The school will employ nearly 200 individuals, including faculty, administrators and dental hygienists, and technical, administrative and other support staff. The direct economic impact of institutional, employee and student spending is expected to reach $14 million in the Bradenton area and as much as $35 million through direct and indirect spending statewide.