UNIVERSITY OF BUCKINGHAM
Embargoed for 00.01 hours on Monday, 17 September, 2012
Launch of the UK’s first private dental school
The United Kingdom’s first independent dental school aimed at a global market is announced today
by the Leicester Dental Teaching Academy and the University of Buckingham.
The school, which will be located in Leicester and will take 100 students annually on a degree course
that lasts five years from September 2013, will be aimed primarily at international students.
The new venture is a partnership between the Leicester Dental Teaching Academy and the
University of Buckingham. The new Bachelors degree in Dental Surgery will be awarded by the
University of Buckingham and the course is designed to meet General Dental Council Outcome
Measures and European standards as well as the requirements of the Quality Assurance Agency for
The degree course is specially designed to appeal to an international market. Students will be
introduced to patient care early on in their training and will be given a thorough grounding in
business development, management and enterprise. They will gain an appreciation of the
international business environment and cultures in other parts of the world such as India, Nigeria
and China – and the impact of oral disease on societies around the world.
Once the school is up and running, the intention is to establish a charitable trust and to engage in
research, as well as to award bursaries to promising students with limited means of support.
The new school will create employment in the city centre of Leicester in an area of economic
regeneration and will provide free dental treatment to members of the public. It is well supported by
local financing and will be Leicester’s largest drop-in centre for dental services, open from 8am to
Professor Terence Kealey, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham, said: “We are pleased to
be pioneering a new dental school that will offer dental education internationally and dental services
to the people of Leicester.”
Professor Stuart Morgenstein, the dean of the new dental school, said: “Our dental school will have
a completely new and innovative course which will prepare students for a lifetime career. They will
be involved with patient care throughout the course and will have cared for a large number of
patients by the time they finish their training. We will continue to support them throughout their
David Willetts, the Higher Education Minister, welcomed the new development. “The venture is an
opportunity to foster Britain’s reputation in the world for skills and knowledge,” he said. It will boost
the nation’s export market and it will have spin-off economic benefits to suppliers, contractors and
the local economy.
Professor Karol Sikora, Dean of Medicine at the University of Buckingham, said: “This very exiting
programme complements our portfolio of healthcare education perfectly. It adds to our existing
postgraduate degree in internal medicine and our MBChB programme which will begin in 2014.
Dentistry is a very popular course and innovative teaching methods will be used to produce a new
breed of dentist with an international vision.”
The central teaching hub and administrative offices will be in existing buildings in Leicester‘s Cultural
Quarter based in and around the Phoenix Media Centre. The Dental Clinical Centre as well as
specialist suites and extra teaching and administrative space will be built on land alongside this
building. Ultimately, this will mean 500 students living and working in the city centre along with 100
staff. There will be 400 patient visits a day. That will boost the regeneration of the area.
The Dental Clinical Centre will also make a significant contribution to the dental health of the local
population, which is below average.
Notes for journalists:
1. The University of Buckingham is an independent not-for-profit university which provides an
Oxbridge style education with small group teaching and access to professors. It comes top of
the Student Satisfaction league table in the National Student Survey. Like the Leicester
Dental Teaching Academy it charges full-cost fees and has to manage its costs in a
businesslike manner. Around 50 per cent of its students come from countries outside the UK
and the EU.
2. The demand for dental education in Britain and around the world is high. Dental schools are
oversubscribed. The UK has 50-60 new dental school places each year for international
students. The number is capped because these places are subsidised by the British taxpayer.
The Leicester Dental Teaching Academy does not rely on public funding and would not be
bound by the cap on numbers; therefore there would be no burden on the taxpayer.
3. The Dental Clinical Centre will have a catchment area of 3.2 million people within 45
minutes’ travel time.
For more information, ring Diana Blamires on 01280 820213 or 07748937484 or Lucy Hodges on
01280 820115 or 07968209934