Faculty members from NYUCD's Advanced Programs for International Dentists work hard to raise the College's profile in Latin America, traveling throughout the region to present educational seminars and network with prospective students. One faculty member who has maintained a particularly high profile is Dr. Lupo Villega, DDS Class of 1994, a native of the Dominican Republic, who joined the faculty in 2005 as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Cariology & Comprehensive Care and an Instructor in the Advanced Program for International Dentists in Esthetic Dentistry.
A high point for Dr. Villega and for NYUCD occurred when he was invited to be a featured participant at the October 2009 annual meeting of the Latin American Dental Federation in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Dr. Villega demonstrated how to place no-preparation veneers to an audience of 2,000 dentists - the first such demonstration in that country.
Dr. Villega traveled to Santo Domingo two months before the meeting to identify a patient who could be fitted for no-preparation veneers, which, unlike traditional veneers, can be attached to teeth without enamel removal. Working with Dr. Adolfo Rodriguez, President of the Dominican Dental Association,
Dr. Villega selected a 20-year-old woman whose anterior teeth were too far apart and too short.
Dr. Villega and his co-presenter, Mr. Jason Kim, President of the Oral Design Center of New York, demonstrated how to take an impression, fabricate the veneers, and condition the teeth and the porcelain veneers for bonding. They placed six veneers in a four-hour operation broadcast live via TV monitors placed throughout the packed convention hall.
"This was a great opportunity to share my knowledge about no-preparation veneers with many dentists from Latin America who are not yet familiar with them," Dr. Villega said. "More training is needed before no-preparation veneers can be made widely available in Latin America, and I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues in the region to promote education on this and other advances in esthetic dentistry."