Delta Dental Building Opens

Several hundred people gathered on the front steps of the new $45 million Delta Dental of Tennessee Building on the UTHSC campus in Memphis in April for a “floss cutting” and grand opening of the state-of-the-art building that houses the College of Dentistry.

The 68,000-square-foot building increases space for training Tennessee’s dental workforce and expands facilities to treat patients from the Mid-South. It houses a clinic for patients with special needs; an expanded faculty practice for treating patients, including the uninsured and underinsured; and dental technique labs for first- and second-year students to hone their skills.

Delta Dental of Tennessee Building on the UTHSC campus.
Delta Dental of Tennessee Building on the UTHSC campus.

The name of the new building honors the support from Delta Dental of Tennessee and its Chief Executive Officer Philip Wenk, a 1973 alumnus of Knoxville and a 1977 graduate of the UTHSC College of Dentistry.

The building opens as the college is undertaking a $53 million project as a part of the state’s five-year, $94 million Healthy Smiles Initiative to increase access to dentists and dental care across Tennessee.

Nursing Mobile Health Unit Unveiled

The UTHSC College of Nursing in May unveiled a mobile health unit dedicated to expanding rural health care access in Tennessee.

Funded through a four-year, $3.9 million grant to the UTHSC College of Nursing from the Health Resources and Services Administration, the UTHSC Nursing Mobile Health unit will be staffed and operated by the college. The unit will increase health care access in Lake and Lauderdale counties, both designated as underserved, and allow the college to integrate rural health education into its undergraduate and graduate programs.

UTHSC Chancellor Peter Buckley cuts the ribbon at the unveiling ceremony of a mobile health unit.
The UTHSC Nursing Mobile Health unit will serve rural populations in Lake County and Lauderdale County, where Diana Dedmon, the principal investigator for the grant that funded the unit.

Clinical services provided in the unit will include primary care, mental health care, chronic disease management, prenatal care and HIV care. The unit is one of many recent efforts that demonstrate UTHSC’s commitment to meeting the needs of people across Tennessee, especially in rural areas where the need is greatest.

New Vice Chancellors Welcomed

UTHSC named two new vice chancellors in May.

Headshot of Brigitte Grant.
Brigitte Grant

Brigitte Grant, vice chancellor for advancement, is a seasoned advancement leader in public academic health science, higher education and nonprofit organizations. In her new role, Grant, who previously worked in philanthropy for the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, will provide the leadership and coordination of development and alumni programs in collaboration with the six college deans, the UTHSC senior leadership team, and health care and community partners.

Headshot of Paul Wesolowski.
Paul Wesolowski

Paul Wesolowski is UTHSC’s first vice chancellor for strategic partnerships. He has more than 35 years of experience in hospital and health care leadership, administration and management, most recently serving as the senior vice president and chief operating officer for the Virginia Commonwealth University Health System.