For students looking to sink their teeth into the dental industry, UCF could one day welcome a dental school.
The College of Dental Medicine has been in the works for a while, and was included in the Board of Trustees' capital improvement plan that was approved July 31, UCF spokesman Chad Binette said in an email. However, there was no discussion about the dental college specifically.
"UCF's capital improvement plan includes projects that might be part of our long-term vision. The dental school is a possibility that we are evaluating, but we won't know for a while whether we will move forward," Binette said. "It would have to go through a long process of consideration and approval."
UCF was required to submit its five-year plan to the Board of Governors, but at this point, Binette said, there is no specific funding request for the dental college.
UCF previously hoped to open the school, which would offer a four-year Doctor of Dental Medicine program, by 2014 as a part of the UCF Health Sciences Campus in Lake Nona, joining the College of Medicine, according to "Proposed Dental College at UCF" documents. It would be built on land owned by the university in a 120,000-square-foot building adjacent to the medical school.
The school would welcome an initial class of 60 students, the document states, which would eventually increase to 100 students. Annual tuition was previously estimated to land somewhere between $50,000 and $60,000.
Previously, UCF projected it would require a $10 million pledge from an anonymous donor and an additional start-up loan of $40 million, with no intent to seek state funding.
"The College of Dental Medicine will mean opportunities for our local students to obtain a dental education that they must now leave our area to achieve," UCF President John C. Hitt said in the document. "The college will mean opportunities to help more people in need of dental care who cannot afford it. And it will mean opportunities to provide Central Florida with new jobs and an economic boost in challenging times."