Rocio Quinonez, DMD, MS, MPH, recently began her appointment as the school’s first associate dean for educational leadership and innovation.
“When we developed our school’s strategic plan, one of the things that rose to the top was a desire to truly revolutionize the way students are taught in oral health education. The creation of this position allows us to have someone dedicated to directing those efforts,” said Dean Scott S. De Rossi, DMD, MBA. “In thinking about this role, it became apparent that Rocio would be a wonderful fit. She is inventive and passionate about ensuring our students receive the best education possible, which is why she will do a wonderful job as associate dean.”
In this new role, Quinonez will lead the efforts to examine the school’s existing curricula and reinvent a contemporary curriculum. Along with the rest of the Office of Academic Affairs, Quinonez will evaluate new technologies, improve the sequence of courses offered and develop a curriculum blueprint. Quinonez will continue to have a presence in the Department of Pediatric Dentistry, where she will still see patients in the Dental Faculty Practice and teach in the DDS pediatric dentistry clinic.
“I am excited to help lead our school in a three-year planning-phase of curriculum innovation. We have a unique opportunity to comprehensively examine and reimagine a curriculum that best prepares our students for the world they will practice in years to come!” said Quinonez.
Quinonez joined the school’s faculty in 2006, following a six-year stint in private practice in Durham, N.C. She is a 2000 graduate of the school’s Master of Science in Pediatric Dentistry Program, and a 1996 graduate of the Doctorate of Medical Dentistry Program at the University of Manitoba. Quinonez is widely known for her work in children’s oral health, including her signature collaborations: the Baby Oral Health Program (bOHP); its sister initiative, Prenatal Oral Health Program (pOHP); and Into the Mouths of Babes.