5 Questions With ... Prof. Annette Stelter

Annette Stelter, RDH, M.A.
Course Director
West Coast University

1. What’s a major development in your field that’s flying under the radar?

Augmented reality is being used to create advanced simulation training programs for many types of business and educational settings, including medical procedures, architecture and dentistry environments. The field of dentistry is ideally suited for the immersive and enriching interactive capabilities of the 3D interface in training the next generation of oral health care providers.

2. What’s the one piece of advice you would give to anyone in dental hygiene school?

Some valuable advice that I would have found beneficial would be to develop a self-care plan. Students need to have healthy eating habits, exercise, plenty of sleep, as well as time dedicated to relaxation and fun. I encourage my students to prepare mentally and physically for the challenges ahead. Incorporating these healthy habits into their lifestyle will foster creativity and give them more energy, which will allow them to stay more organized and engaged during the learning process.

3. In 10 years, the biggest change about dental education (or dentistry) will be …

Mental health issues have plagued dentistry for decades. Oral health care providers who experience mental health problems at school and work require better support when experiencing feelings of stress that contribute to burnout and mental health issues. I estimate and hope that within at least 10 years, academic leaders will identify strategies focusing on mental health that will deter burnout and other mental health issues for the next generation of oral health care providers.

4. What’s your favorite vacation spot—and why?

I've been blessed to travel for vacation, so it is extremely difficult to pick a favorite. However, out of all the incredible places I’ve had the opportunity to visit, Ireland stands out the most. It has beautiful scenery, music-filled pubs, the “Guinness is Good for You” slogan, breathtaking ancient sites and, to top it all off, my husband and I stayed in the Dromoland Castle.

5. What’s your favorite TV show—and why?

Well, I don’t have cable TV. I guess I am a self-proclaimed CE junkie and get my entertainment from listening to TED Talks, podcasts and documentaries. Since I don’t spend a lot of time watching TV, I tend to focus my energy on the ADEA LEADE program. Be sure to check it out and join us in the fall!