Okanagan Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates
Oral surgeons give to thank Certified Dental Assistants

July 6, 2021

A local oral surgery group with offices in Kelowna and Vernon is investing in the education of Certified Dental Assistants (CDAs) with a gift to Okanagan College’s Our Students, Your Health campaign. Dr. Richard Bell, Dr. Russell Naito and Dr. Tom White of Okanagan Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Associates are donating $30,000 to support a state-of-the-art dental clinic in the College’s new Health Sciences Centre. The surgeons say the gift is a way to recognize and celebrate the work of their current staff and past employees. “We want to sh...

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123Dentist members
College's modern dental clinic gets a boost from 123Dentist

June 28, 2021

123Dentist, Canada’s largest majority dentist-owned network of dental practices, is giving $30,000 to support Okanagan College’s state-of-the-art dental space located in the new $18.9-million Health Sciences Centre. The new clinic is a major upgrade for Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) students, who can now learn in private operatories comparable to today’s dental practices along with smart cameras and monitors for teaching and instruction. Ali Bozorgzad, Co-Founder and Executive Vice President of 123Dentist, says his organization was insp...

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Maria Kruger, Certified Dental Assistant student
CIBC gives scholarship boost to Indigenous students

January 18, 2021

When Maria Kruger graduates as a Certified Dental Assistant from Okanagan College later this year, she will proudly stand among her people as a skilled professional. Kruger, who is of Okanagan/Shuswap descent, has a goal to graduate and work with people in her community on the Penticton Indian Band. “I want to see our people go into skilled trades and be able to support our own communities. That’s one of my main goals,” says Kruger, who also cites her two-year-old son as inspiration behind her return to school. A new donation from CIBC alon...

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Certified Dental Assistant student practicing her skills
Redmond family inspires future dental assistants

March 11, 2020

After spending more than 40 years working as a Certified Dental Assistant (CDA), Jean Redmond knows first-hand it is a rewarding career. Now, she and her husband Bill are choosing to inspire the next generation of CDAs by pledging $40,000 toward the construction of a new Health Sciences Centre at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus. The new Centre will feature a modern dental clinic to train CDAs, which are in-demand locally and across the province. The clinic will mirror a modern dental office, with a reception room, state-of-the-art operato...

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Department of Certified Dental Assistant

The Certified Dental Assistant Department at Okanagan College provides the education, training and experience for the diploma program, required by the College of Dental Surgeons of B.C. for registration as a Certified Dental Assistant.

    Certified Dental Assistants work as team members and require excellent communication skills, commitment to oral health and professionalism. This program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada and approved by the College of Dental Surgeons of British Columbia. To be registered as a Certified Dental Assistant (Dental Auxiliary - Level 2), a student must provide the College of Dental Surgeons with the following confirmation:

    • Grade 12 completion or equivalent;
    • Successful completion of a dental assisting program; and
    • CPR Level C and must be current at time of graduation.
    • successful completion of the National Dental Assisting Examining Board Exam

     

      Program spotlight

      The Certified Dental Assistant Certificate is a one-year, provincially regulated program that prepares students to work alongside dentists in clinical practices across B.C.

      Courses

      Search for courses and schedules for the Certified Dental Assistant program.

      Instructors

      Tammie Barry

      Chair - Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Sciences Centre 302
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445 ext. 4422
      Headshot of Tammie Barry

      I am an alumna of Okanagan College, Class of 2000. I have been involved with CDABC as a board member and I am a registrant of CDSBC with a practicing license. Prior to joining the OC Certified Dental Assistant program as an instructor, I worked in general and specialty dental practices. My love of dentistry lead me to my future career as an instructor here at OC. I joined the Certified Dental Assistant program in 2014 and I also teach the Prosthodontic module through continuing studies. I am involved in committees here at OC such as the Interprofessional Educators committee which I believe is important as healthcare professionals to be united and learn from each other’s professional practice. My passion to educate new CDAs is what brought me to my teaching career and the joy I get from watching my students grow, learn and succeed is what truly motivates me as an educator.

      Credentials:
      CDA, PID, VCC

      Lorna McFadden

      Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Sciences Centre 302
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445 ext. 4221

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant for 30 years and decided it was time to pay it forward and pass along my knowledge and experience. I am an OC alumna and joined the faculty in 2015 as a clinical instructor. I have my prosthodontic module and also teach the module here at OC in Continuing Studies.  I currently work in general practice which I continue practising my skills in an industry that is always evolving. Becoming a CDA educator provides me the opportunity to encourage patient care and professional growth in my students. I enjoy leading a healthy lifestyle and the Okanagan allows me to do that!

      Credentials:
      CDA, Okanagan College
      CCH, Vancouver Academy of Homeopathy
      PID, Vancouver Community College

      Kathryn Truant

      Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Building 130E
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445
      Headshot of Kathryn Truant

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant for over 30 years. I began my teaching journey in 2019 here at OC in the CDA program and look forward to being part of the future of dental education as an OC alumna myself. I continue to practise in the community I have had a wonderful career in dentistry in various general practices and more specifically oral maxillofacial surgery. I am working on my Master's of Adult Education at SFU to further my teaching and learning practices. I enjoy being an integral part of the dental community and hope to join provincial and national boards to promote our amazing profession. Educating and training the next generation of Certified Dental Assistants truly is a passion of mine.

      Credentials:
      MEd, Curriculum and Instruction Post-Secondary, SFU (in progress)
      Provincial Instructor Diploma, Vancouver Community College
      CDA, Okanagan College

      Joanne Gibbons-Smyth

      Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Building 130D
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445 ext. 4221
      Certified Dental Assistant Program - Joanne Gibbons-Smith

      I have over 14 years of experience as a Certified Dental Assistant and a decade as an Instructor at Okanagan College. I am a CDABC member and CDSBC practising registrant and teach the Prosthodontic Module in our continuing studies programs, it brings me great excitement to offer changes to a program to enhance accessibility and delivery such as the prosthodontic and orthodontic modules offered at OC in which both are hybrid. I am passionate about the profession and dentistry, evidenced by being selected Valedictorian of my graduating class at VCC.  My experience in both general and dental specialty settings provides me with a vast wealth of knowledge. As both a CDA and an educator, I believe health-care professionals are responsible for not only patient care, but education and prevention. I am involved in various committees such as professional development, learning and applied research, interprofessional for educators committee and recently joined a working group for online delivery frameworks. I have been a dental accreditation site surveyor on a national level and am always willing to join provincial and national committees in the future. As the chairperson of the CDA program, I have been able to expand the program and create current curriculum that includes the wide range of technology used today in dentistry. I am presently working on a Master's of Adult Education at SFU with a future graduation date of 2022. With the construction of a new dental clinic, students can achieve their dreams in a state-of-the-art training facility and have optimal learning experiences here at OC. I believe each student should have a signature experience in their learning journey.

      Credentials:
      CDA, ID, VCC

      Nina Lesage

      Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Sciences Centre 302
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445 ext. 4281
      Headshot of Nina Lesage

      I have been a CDA for over 20 years and work also as an Office Co-ordinator. Having sual expertise in various dental offices including my present practice has enabled me to further develop my skills and connections with patients and the dental team. I joined OC in 2015 as a clinical instructor within the CDA program, as well as continuing studies dental administration course instructor. In my own teaching and learning journey I discovered my passion for inspiring the next generation of dental professionals. I enjoy being a part of a student’s “aha” moment when learning a new skill. Being a Certified Dental Assistant is a rewarding career and being able to educate others in this profession truly inspires me.

      Nichole Stevenson

      Certified Dental Assistant
      Office: Health Building 130L
      Campus: Kelowna
      Phone: 250-762-5445 ext. 4281
      Headshot of Nicole Stevenson

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant since 2004. I joined Okanagan College in 2016 and bring a wealth of knowledge from various general practices including reception. In 2018, I completed the Learner-Centered Instructor Certificate and I am working towards completing the Provincial Instructor’s Diploma program. I am the Distance Education online instructor for the DENT 001 course (Introduction to a Career as a CDA). I am honoured to be part of the team at Okanagan College. Watching students grow and apply their learning and skills is incredibly rewarding.

      Credentials:
      CDA

      Experience

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      Joanne Gibbons-Smyth is an instructor and chair of the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) program
      Meet Joanne Gibbons-Smyth

      October 29, 2019

      Joanne Gibbons-Smyth is an instructor and chair of the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) program where she has been teaching since 2010. She has adopted a blended approach to support learning by engaging her students through a variety of assignments and labs, including skills videos, which she provides on Moodle. She has seen first-hand the benefits of having learners work with content online as she enjoys the expanded opportunities for student collaboration during face-to-face cla...

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      McFadden, Lorna

      Last Name
      McFadden
      First Name
      Lorna
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Sciences Centre
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Extension
      4221
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      lmcfadden@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      302
      Employee Group
      INS
      Active
      Yes
      Bio

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant for 30 years and decided it was time to pay it forward and pass along my knowledge and experience. I am an OC alumna and joined the faculty in 2015 as a clinical instructor. I have my prosthodontic module and also teach the module here at OC in Continuing Studies.  I currently work in general practice which I continue practising my skills in an industry that is always evolving. Becoming a CDA educator provides me the opportunity to encourage patient care and professional growth in my students. I enjoy leading a healthy lifestyle and the Okanagan allows me to do that!

      Credentials
      CDA, Okanagan College
      CCH, Vancouver Academy of Homeopathy
      PID, Vancouver Community College
      Department Display
      Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      5
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No

      Lesage, Nina

      Last Name
      Lesage
      First Name
      Nina
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Sciences Centre
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Extension
      4281
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      nlesage@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      302
      Employee Group
      INS
      Active
      Yes
      Headshot of Nina Lesage
      Bio

      I have been a CDA for over 20 years and work also as an Office Co-ordinator. Having sual expertise in various dental offices including my present practice has enabled me to further develop my skills and connections with patients and the dental team. I joined OC in 2015 as a clinical instructor within the CDA program, as well as continuing studies dental administration course instructor. In my own teaching and learning journey I discovered my passion for inspiring the next generation of dental professionals. I enjoy being a part of a student’s “aha” moment when learning a new skill. Being a Certified Dental Assistant is a rewarding career and being able to educate others in this profession truly inspires me.

      Department Display
      Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      2
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No

      Stevenson, Nichole

      Last Name
      Stevenson
      First Name
      Nichole
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Building
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Extension
      4281
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      nstevenson@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      130L
      Employee Group
      SUP
      Active
      Yes
      Headshot of Nicole Stevenson
      Bio

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant since 2004. I joined Okanagan College in 2016 and bring a wealth of knowledge from various general practices including reception. In 2018, I completed the Learner-Centered Instructor Certificate and I am working towards completing the Provincial Instructor’s Diploma program. I am the Distance Education online instructor for the DENT 001 course (Introduction to a Career as a CDA). I am honoured to be part of the team at Okanagan College. Watching students grow and apply their learning and skills is incredibly rewarding.

      Credentials
      CDA
      Department Display
      Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      1
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No

      Truant, Kathryn

      Last Name
      Truant
      First Name
      Kathryn
      Preferred Name
      Kathryn
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Building
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      ktruant@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      130E
      Employee Group
      INS
      Active
      Yes
      Headshot of Kathryn Truant
      Bio

      I have been a Certified Dental Assistant for over 30 years. I began my teaching journey in 2019 here at OC in the CDA program and look forward to being part of the future of dental education as an OC alumna myself. I continue to practise in the community I have had a wonderful career in dentistry in various general practices and more specifically oral maxillofacial surgery. I am working on my Master's of Adult Education at SFU to further my teaching and learning practices. I enjoy being an integral part of the dental community and hope to join provincial and national boards to promote our amazing profession. Educating and training the next generation of Certified Dental Assistants truly is a passion of mine.

      Credentials
      MEd, Curriculum and Instruction Post-Secondary, SFU (in progress)
      Provincial Instructor Diploma, Vancouver Community College
      CDA, Okanagan College
      Department Display
      Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      4
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No

      Gibbons-Smyth, Joanne

      Last Name
      Gibbons-Smyth
      First Name
      Joanne
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Building
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Extension
      4221
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      jgibbons-smyth@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      130D
      Employee Group
      ADM
      Active
      Yes
      Certified Dental Assistant Program - Joanne Gibbons-Smith
      Bio

      I have over 14 years of experience as a Certified Dental Assistant and a decade as an Instructor at Okanagan College. I am a CDABC member and CDSBC practising registrant and teach the Prosthodontic Module in our continuing studies programs, it brings me great excitement to offer changes to a program to enhance accessibility and delivery such as the prosthodontic and orthodontic modules offered at OC in which both are hybrid. I am passionate about the profession and dentistry, evidenced by being selected Valedictorian of my graduating class at VCC.  My experience in both general and dental specialty settings provides me with a vast wealth of knowledge. As both a CDA and an educator, I believe health-care professionals are responsible for not only patient care, but education and prevention. I am involved in various committees such as professional development, learning and applied research, interprofessional for educators committee and recently joined a working group for online delivery frameworks. I have been a dental accreditation site surveyor on a national level and am always willing to join provincial and national committees in the future. As the chairperson of the CDA program, I have been able to expand the program and create current curriculum that includes the wide range of technology used today in dentistry. I am presently working on a Master's of Adult Education at SFU with a future graduation date of 2022. With the construction of a new dental clinic, students can achieve their dreams in a state-of-the-art training facility and have optimal learning experiences here at OC. I believe each student should have a signature experience in their learning journey.

      Credentials
      CDA, ID, VCC
      Department Display
      Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      6
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No

      Barry, Tammie

      Last Name
      Barry
      First Name
      Tammie
      Department
      Dental Assisting
      Building
      Health Sciences Centre
      Campus
      Kelowna
      Phone Number
      250-762-5445
      Extension
      4422
      Unlisted
      No
      Email
      tbarry@okanagan.bc.ca
      Office
      302
      Employee Group
      CHR
      Active
      Yes
      Headshot of Tammie Barry
      Bio

      I am an alumna of Okanagan College, Class of 2000. I have been involved with CDABC as a board member and I am a registrant of CDSBC with a practicing license. Prior to joining the OC Certified Dental Assistant program as an instructor, I worked in general and specialty dental practices. My love of dentistry lead me to my future career as an instructor here at OC. I joined the Certified Dental Assistant program in 2014 and I also teach the Prosthodontic module through continuing studies. I am involved in committees here at OC such as the Interprofessional Educators committee which I believe is important as healthcare professionals to be united and learn from each other’s professional practice. My passion to educate new CDAs is what brought me to my teaching career and the joy I get from watching my students grow, learn and succeed is what truly motivates me as an educator.

      Credentials
      CDA, PID, VCC
      Department Display
      Chair - Certified Dental Assistant
      Priority
      3
      Search Exclude
      No
      Staff Phone Unlisted
      No
      Staff Office Unlisted
      No