Renee Garcia-Prajer, R.D.H., M.S.
A.S. Dental Hygiene; University of Bridgeport, Bridgeport, CT.
B.S. Dental Hygiene; University of Bridgeport, Bridgeport, CT.
M.S. Education; University of Bridgeport, Bridgeport, CT.
Certified in the Delivery of Local Anesthesia, State of Connecticut
American Heart Association Instructor Certification, BLS for Health Care Provider
Renee is a tenured, Associate Professor who began teaching in the discipline of dental hygiene in 1990. Throughout this time, she has spanned clinical and didactic curriculum in all levels of dental hygiene education including Oral Radiology, Oral Anatomy, Embryology, Histology, Dental Hygiene Research, Dental Hygiene Senior Project, Dental Hygiene Internship/Service Learning, Dental Hygiene Concepts I, II, III, IV and Advanced Dental Hygiene Concepts. Ms. Garcia-Prajer is an enthusiastic educator who enjoys the utilization of technology in the classroom and initiating contemporary ideas into the dental hygiene curriculum. She has led experiential education internships in Honduras as well as on Native American Indian Reservations for the Lakota, Navajo and Cherokee tribes across the United States.
Professor Garcia-Prajer is a published author in the Journal of Dental Hygiene, Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, the Journal of Practical Hygiene and a co-author of DH Notes. Ms. Garcia-Prajer has presented at the local, state and national levels. She has been the recipient of multiple awards including the Experiential Education Service-Learning Award the University's Excellence in Experiential Education Award, and the prestigious Excellence in Teaching award.
Her professional affiliations include the American Dental Hygienists' Association, the Connecticut Dental Hygienists' Association, the New Haven Dental Hygienists' Association and the National Society of Experiential Education. She is a member of the Tau Sigma National Honor Society and also serves a Curriculum Consultant for the American Dental Association's Commission on Dental Accreditation.
What do you think makes the University of New Haven DH program unique?
The University of New Haven Dental Hygiene Program is unique in that it offers Academic Service Learning courses. Academic Service Learning is a form of experiential education where students participate in scheduled direct service to enhance learning objectives. Unlike traditional classroom settings, students apply their skills and knowledge outside the classroom by learning and working in the community. The service the students’ provide meets an actual community need and enhances what is being taught in the classroom.
What do you like most about the profession of dental hygiene?
PLAQUE!! Not really although it does bring job security. As a high school student I was attracted to the profession of dental hygiene because it meant that I would not have to take many math courses. Now I enjoy the schedule flexibility and the variety of employment settings that the profession allows.
Getting to know your professor
To answer this question, I went to the students to see how they would describe me….risky I know, but here is what they had to say: “Renee is intimidating at first, but is very nurturing and supportive”, “Hilarious”, “Fun teacher, but is serious about getting your work done”.