HATTIESBURG – First-year students in the Pearl River Community College dental hygiene program brightened the smiles of 25 kids from the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club of Hattiesburg.
The students and children took part Friday, Feb. 1, in the annual Give Kids A Smile event sponsored by the South Mississippi Dental Society and PRCC.
The PRCC students cleaned and polished each child’s teeth and made sure they know the proper technique for brushing and flossing. A dentist then checked the PRCC students’ work and examined the children’s teeth.
“The main reason we participate is to give back to the community,” said Dr. Shana Allen, director of the PRCC program. “It’s also a wonderful learning experience for our students.”
Six-year-old Rory Hall Jr., a student at Lillie Burney Elementary School, used a hand mirror to watch what PRCC student Cindy Nguyen of St. Martin was doing inside his mouth.
“I like her washing my teeth,” he said.
PRCC and area dentists have partnered on Give Kids A Smile for nine years, said Dr. Lana Clarke of Hattiesburg, coordinator for the dental society.
“It is basically a way for us to reach out to the community and try to make a difference,” she said.
PRCC provides the hygienists and the clinic while the dental society provides supplies and dentists. Dr. Bill Tolbert of Hattiesburg also assisted with the exams.
For more information on the PRCC dental hygiene program or to make an appointment at the clinic, telephone 601 554-5509.