NADL, NBC and FDLT Celebrate June as Dental Technician and CDT Appreciation Month
NADL, NBC and FDLT Celebrate June as Dental Technician and CDT Appreciation Month
The National Association of Dental Laboratories (NADL), National Board for Certification in Dental Laboratory Technology (NBC), and the Foundation for Dental Laboratory Technology (FDLT) celebrate June as Dental Technician and Certified Dental Technician (CDT) Appreciation Month.
Dental technicians bring significant experience and subject matter knowledge related to dental materials, technology, shade verification and restorative dentistry. Although generally operating behind the scenes of the oral health care team, dental technicians are a critical part of safeguarding the delivery of high-quality dental care.
“Dental technicians have a high index of curiosity, creativity, energy, a strong will, a settled purpose, and invincible determination,” said Robert Gitman, 2021 NADL president. “They utilize those traits to make an indispensable contribution to make people’s lives better. When faced with an obstacle, they find a solution - because no problem can impede them from achieving the purpose for which they exist. Congratulations to all of these authentic and passionate people who diligently apply their skills in dental laboratories every day.”
NADL seeks to inform dentists and patients of the important role of the dental laboratory technician and dental laboratory through its “What’s In Your Mouth?” campaign. In the U.S., most states set no minimum standards for people to be employed as dental technicians. In fact, only five states in the U.S. require either certification or continuing education for dental technicians.
The Certified Dental Technician (CDT) designation demonstrates a mastery of the knowledge and applied skills needed in dental technology. It illustrates a technician’s commitment to the field of dental technology and demonstrates their knowledge in six specialty areas: ceramics, complete dentures, crown and bridge, orthodontics, partial dentures and implants.
“Being a CDT shows that you are dedicated to the high standards held in the field of dental technology, with a focus on the quality and advancement of dentistry by providing the best in dental restorations,” said Dennis Urban, CDT, 2021 NBC chair. “Your certification in your specialty areas shows your pride, dedication and accomplishments of your role in dentistry. We salute you during CDT and Dental Technician Appreciation Month.”
The month of June is dedicated to dental technicians and Certified Dental Technicians who work tirelessly to ensure that patients receive a high level of care during the restorative process.
“We celebrate the entire month of June as CDT and Dental Technician Appreciation Month to ensure credit where credit is due. We want the world to know the mastermind behind the millions of proud smiles,” said Sean Siegel, 2021 Foundation chair. “As the Foundation chair, I am proud to say we support CDTs and dental technicians through education and our grant and scholarship program. For as long as we continue to support you and you continue to support us, the DLT community will be unstoppable.”
The NADL is the unified voice of the dental laboratory profession supporting dentistry and serves the public interest by promoting high standards. NADL accomplishes this by providing programs, services and networking opportunities to meet the evolving technical, educational, professional and business needs of dental laboratories.
The NBC was formed in 1955 as an independent certification organization dedicated to improving the quality of dental laboratory technology through voluntary testing and certification of dental laboratories and technicians. This is the only voluntary certification program for dental laboratory technicians recognized by the American Dental Association.
The FDLT, which was incorporated in 2008, is committed to advocating and raising awareness for the necessity of dental laboratory technology education for dental laboratory technicians and other affected members of the dental team.
Edwin Kee, Master CDT, TE, named 2021 CDT of the Year
Edwin Kee, Master CDT, TE is an Associate Professor at the Louisiana State University (LSU) Health Sciences Center New Orleans School of Dentistry, CDL, in New Orleans, La. He has worked in the dental laboratory profession for over 24 years, and earned an associate and bachelor's degree in dental laboratory technology. Edwin also holds the prestigious title of Master CDT, being one of only 11 CDTs that has earned certification in all six specialties.
Edwin began his career in 1998, earning his degrees from LSU. After that, he switched from student to teacher, and joined the staff at LSU to help mold the minds and hands of others. In 2003, Edwin earned his first certification in ceramics, and over the next four years, completed the other specialty exams to earn the Master CDT designation. When NBC announced the implants specialty in 2012, Edwin was one of the first to successfully complete the certification.
He has always been incredibly passionate about education and attends multiple meetings and courses each year. In addition to the many industry meetings that he attends, Edwin also spends much of his time giving back to the industry with research and speaking engagements. He has been published numerous times in industry magazines, including JDT. Edwin has volunteered several times with Mission of Mercy as well as with the National Foundation of Dentistry for the Handicapped. He also volunteers his services to NBC, with LSU hosting the CDT exams each year, on top of additional volunteer activities.
When Edwin is not working or volunteering, you can find him with his family. He met his wife, Kathy, in New Orleans, and together they have two sons, Evan and Aiden. In his free time, he enjoys travelling, spending time on his aquariums and koi pond, working on bonsai trees, and has become an avid tortoise and turtle farmer.
Congratulations Edwin Kee, Master CDT, TE, on being the 2021 CDT of the Year!
Foundation for Dental Laboratory Technology Launches CDT Hardship Grant
Are you a CDT that suffered loss of income as a result of COVID-19? If so, this grant is for you!
COVID-19 has caused major impacts to the world we know today, including the dental laboratory technology profession. Between dental office and dental laboratory closures, and employees facing a decrease in hours as well as temporary or permanent furloughs, many have experienced a loss of income during this worldwide pandemic.
Recognizing the effects a loss of income can have, the Foundation for Dental Laboratory Technology (Foundation) created the CDT Hardship Grant, for 2021 only, in an effort to ensure the negative impacts of COVID-19 does not hinder the importance of maintaining the CDT designation.
“The Foundation tackled the opportunity to alleviate some stress amongst the CDT community in these incredibly strange times,” said Foundation Chair Sean Siegel. The CDT Hardship Grant is fully funded by contributions from individuals and companies and we are pleased to play a part in ensuring that those in need of assistance, receive it. You support us, we support you based on industry needs, and the support cycle continues. We are stronger together.”
As part of this grant, the Foundation will cover the annual CDT renewal fee of $170 for a selected group of CDTs. This grant will be offered four times during 2021 – once for each CDT renewal cycle. The application deadlines are as follows:
- February 28, 2021 for March CDT renewals
- May 31, 2021 for June CDT renewals
- August 31, 2021 for September CDT renewals
- November 30, 2021 for December CDT renewals
NBC Chair Dennis Urban, CDT said, “The CDT Hardship grant will be so meaningful to CDTs that are facing trying times financially as a result of COVID-19. Every CDT is important to our industry because of the standards they adhere to in being certified. By providing CDTs who have financial hardships the opportunity to apply for the CDT Hardship Grant, the Foundation has once again shown their commitment, dedication, and focus in supporting Certified Dental Technicians.”
With the CDT Hardship Grant providing the opportunity to cover CDT renewal fees, and the Foundation Learning Library (www.dentallabfoundation.org/courses) steadily offering quality continuing education free of charge, the Foundation is your one-stop resource to meeting your annual CDT requirements.
“Education is the key to developing and maintaining our valued CDTs industry wide,” said Siegel. “We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – the Foundation has your back!”
For more information and to apply for the CDT Hardship Grant today, visit www.dentallabfoundation.org/cdt-hardship-grant or contact the Foundation office at by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (866) 627-3990.
For a full listing of Foundation donors, please visit www.dentallabfoundation.org/donors.
NBC Launches Remote Testing Option for the Practical Examinations
You Voiced, and We Listened
NBC is elated to announce that they are piloting a new pathway for the Practical examinations, whereby the Practical examinations can be taken remotely at a dental laboratory of the candidate’s choosing under the constant supervision of a third party remote proctor. Interested candidates will be able to utilize the remote Practical examination testing (RPT) option beginning September 1, 2020. Yes, you read that right – you may be able to take the NBC Practical examination at your OWN DENTAL LABORATORY!
Exams will be offered in alternating monthly testing windows six times a year, during the months of January, March, May, July, September, and November, running from the first day of the month through the last day of the month. Application deadlines are the 20th of the month prior to the desired testing window. For example, if a candidate wants to take their Practical examination through the remote testing option in November, they must submit a completed application to NBC by October 20th.
“The NBC Board of Trustees has been researching remotely proctored practical testing options for some time now,” said NBC Chair, Dennis Urban, CDT. “Our goal was to increase accessibility for dental technicians interested in pursuing the CDT examinations, without sacrificing examination quality and security. The COVID-19 global pandemic created the urgency to pursue this option to ensure candidates interested in pursuing their CDT could continue to do so without concerns over their safety.” Like the written examinations, which switched to computer-based testing (CBT) in early 2018, NBC will partner with the proctoring service MonitorEDU for the Practical examinations. NBC has developed a number of security protocols before, during and after the Practical examinations to protect the integrity of the examination process. For example, NBC will be using a dual camera process, using both the camera on the candidate’s laptop computer and the camera on the candidate’s cell phone. Candidates will be required to be on camera throughout the entire duration of the examination. Candidates will also be provided with specific instructions on packaging their work and shipping it back to NBC for grading.
“This option for the Practical examinations is game changing, as it eliminates massive barriers to testing such as travel costs, exam accessibility, reduction of test anxiety and borrowing and transportation of equipment,” said NBC Vice Chair, Mark Stueck, CDT. “It is the final piece to the puzzle of allowing candidates to complete ALL CDT examinations remotely at a location, date and time of their choosing.”
Candidates will be required to have access to the specific dental laboratory materials and equipment necessary to complete the Practical examination work in the specialty of their choosing. Additionally, candidates will need the following general equipment to utilize the remote testing option for the Practical examination:
- Private workbench where the candidate can perform the majority of work without interference.
- Laptop computer with built-in or external webcam, speakers, and microphone (tablets not supported).
o Laptop operating system of Windows 7 and higher or Mac OS 9 and higher. Most Linux are also supported.
o Web browser must be recent version of Google Chrome (50+).
- Cellular smart phone with camera with Android 4.1 or higher or iOS 8.0 or higher operating system.
- Internet connection with at least 2 Mbps download and 2 Mbps upload speeds. Both the computer and cell phone will need to be connected to the internet.
- Power cords for laptop computer and cellular smart phone.
- Materials for articulating, packaging and shipping their completed work back to NBC for grading.
“Over the last two years, since the launch of our computer-based written examinations, our focus has been on updating our Practical examination to keep pace with the changing market trends,” said Morris Fucarino, CDT, NBC Immediate Past Chair. “We have added the capability for candidates to complete their preliminary work using digital technologies and added more choices for materials. Now, our goal is to focus on how we can deliver these examinations to make them more convenient with the ever-changing world today, while still maintaining the integrity of the process.”
For additional information on the new option to take the Practical examination remotely through a third party proctor, including an extended list of FAQs, please visit https://nbccert.org/certificants/certified-dental-technician/cdt-application.cfm or contact NBC by email at email@example.com or by phone at (800) 684-5310.