West Virginia State University (DEAP)

Dentists are integral members of the health care team. Today’s oral health professionals focus not only on the diagnosis and detection of oral health problems, they also stress the importance of oral health to systemic health and well-being. Oral-systemic health linkages and profound oral health disparities are indicated in emerging research. The West Virginia University School of Dentistry engages students in an abundance of educational, outreach, and research experiences to help reduce these disparities and prepare them to provide exemplary and culturally sensitive oral healthcare. There are many career options in dentistry, including private practice, public health and academic dentistry. Dentists in private practice serve as their own bosses, allowing them flexibility to balance their professional and personal lives. A career in public health focuses on community health. Academic dentistry careers combine teaching, research, community service, and patient care. There are twelve recognized dental specialties:  Dental Anesthesiology, Dental Public Health, Endodontics, Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Oral Medicine, Orofacial Pain, Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, Pediatric Dentistry, Periodontics, and Prosthodontics. The need for dentists is expected to continue to increase as the demand for oral health care grows.

Capitalizing on the strength of partnerships, the WVU School of Dentistry and the West Virginia State University College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics are joining together to promote students’ seamless progression from college to dental school through the West Virginia State University and WVU School of Dentistry Dental Early Admission Program (WVSU/WVU DEAP). This joint program helps simplify the dental school admission process while easing the financial burden of the application. DEAP gives a select number of motivated West Virginia State University pre-dental students an early introduction to the WVU School of Dentistry faculty, students and alumni while also providing unique opportunities to help prepare them for WVU’s challenging dental program.

The WVU School of Dentistry has partnered with the WVSU College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics to offer highly qualified rising sophomores at WVSU potential, early admission to WVU’s Doctor of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.) program. Individuals who complete their first year at WVSU and aspire to earn a dental degree are eligible to apply to DEAP. Admission to the DEAP is available to a maximum of two WVSU students annually through a competitive application and interview process. West Virginia residents receive priority consideration. Because the WVU School of Dentistry values diversity and recognizes its importance in addressing access to quality oral health care, individuals from populations that are under-represented in dental school, including African American, Latino/Hispanic, Native American, first-generation college and economically disadvantaged, are encouraged to apply. 

West Virginia State University is responsible for DEAP student recruitment since enrollment in WVSU is a key program requirement.

DEAP applications are available to all WVSU students who meet the specified criteria (see below).

DEAP is one of several WVU School of Dentistry early admission agreements with colleges and universities to help guide pre-dental students’ smooth progression into the D.D.S. program.

DEAP Admission Requirements

Students admitted to DEAP must:

  • Have successfully completed a minimum of 30 semester hours and a maximum of 75 semester hours, with a minimum of a 3.60 GPA, to include at least two (2) of the required Biology, Chemistry and core courses each semester.  Core courses are listed under “Undergraduate Curriculum.”

  • Have successfully completed Biology 120 and 121 before official entry to the WVU Doctoral of Dental Surgery Program.

  • Take one Biology and one Mathematics core course per semester during their freshman year. Complete both General Chemistry lab and lecture courses (Chemistry 105, 106, 107 and 108) by the start of their sophomore year.

  • Complete the Physics core courses by the completion of their sophomore year.

  • Have successfully completed 120 semester hours to graduate from WVSU.

Prior to admission to DEAP, students must have a least 20 hours of documented observation in one or more general dental practices.

Upon acceptance to DEAP, students sign a commitment statement affirming their intention to satisfy program requirements and participate in WVSU/WVUSoD DEAP activities. 

DEAP participants are expected to complete their undergraduate degree at WVSU within four years. 

DEAP Ongoing Requirements

To continue participation in DEAP while enrolled in West Virginia State University, students must:

  • Maintain at least 3.60 overall and science GPAs.

  • Maintain standards of honesty, integrity, and citizenship.

Students accepted into the WVSU/WVUSoD DEAP program will be guaranteed admittance to the WVU dental program if they:

  • Successfully complete all prerequisite courses for dental school admission and all other requirements, including immunizations and criminal background clearance, which are incurred at the students’ own expense

  • Have maintained overall and science GPAs of 3.60 or above at West Virginia State University.

  • Take the Dental Admission Test (DAT) and score at or above the average Academic and Perceptual Ability Test (PAT) scores achieved by the previous WVU entering dental class.

  • Fulfill preparatory community service (minimum 50 hours) and dental shadowing requirements (minimum 75 hours in various general dental practices).

  • Successfully complete dental school application and interview requirements.

  • Demonstrate honesty, integrity, leadership and citizenship.

Undergraduate Curriculum

Biology Core Courses + labs (8 credit hours)

Bio 120 (4 credit hours)
Bio 121 (4 credit hours)

Chemistry Core Courses (23 credit hours)

Inorganic Chemistry + labs (10 credit hours)
Organic Chemistry + labs (10 credit hours)
Biochemistry (3 credit hours)

Physics Core Courses + labs (10 credit hours)

English Composition and Rhetoric Core Courses (6 credit hours)

Anatomy (Comparative or Human) (4 credit hours)

Dental Track Courses (51 credit hours)

West Virginia State University determines the additional courses necessary to fulfill undergraduate degree requirements.

Dental School Application

In the summer following their junior year at West Virginia State University, DEAP students are required to apply to the WVU D.D.S. program via the Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) and, when prompted, complete the WVU School of Dentistry Supplemental Application for Admission in the fall semester of their senior year. The latter application fee is waived. An interview with the Dental Admissions Committee is required to verify that the candidate has fulfilled all D.D.S. program admissions requirements. DEAP applicants are informed about their dental school application status via letter from the Associate Dean for Dental Admissions, Recruitment, and Access on or after December 1.

WVSU DEAP Application

Individuals who receive provisional acceptance to the WVU School of Dentistry educational programs must pass a Criminal Background Investigation (CBI), at their own expense, prior to final acceptance to the WVU School of Dentistry.

West Virginia State University College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

West Virginia State University (WVSU) is a public-land grant institution, which was founded in 1891 as a Historically Black College and University (HBCU), and has evolved into a fully accessible, diverse, and multi-generational institution serving approximately 3,500 students. The West Virginia State University College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics endeavors to educate students to understand, utilize, and improve upon scientific and mathematical principles and relate them to human knowledge. Additionally, the College works to promote students’ scientific and mathematical literacy, as well as to utilize the collective expertise of its faculty to serve the University, the state of West Virginia, and the nation. Through hands-on instruction, mentoring, and experiential research opportunities, the College motivates students, providing them with the knowledge and skills needed to pursue their dreams. Graduates will gain a broad familiarity with the many fields of natural sciences and mathematics, along with a diverse set of skills that will allow them to develop their knowledge, employ creative problem-solving skills, and relish in the satisfaction of intellectual adventure. With undergraduate degrees in biology, chemistry, and mathematics and computer science, and a graduate degree in biotechnology, it’s easy to see why more students than ever are choosing to pursue their education at West Virginia State University.

West Virginia University School of Dentistry

The WVU School of Dentistry fosters each student’s development of technical competence and professional responsibilities to address the oral health of all people, especially West Virginians. Within a respectful and humanistic learning environment, the dental curriculum prepares students to meet the oral health needs of a diverse society. The School’s faculty consists of highly trained dentists, specialists, and scientists, who are also expert dental educators. WVU participates in community outreach programs-local, statewide and global-and offers enriching inter-professional learning opportunities. The School utilizes state-of-the-art technology to facilitate excellence in education, including but not limited to totally electronic health records, digital radiography and photography, digital implant planning, and dental simulation technology. The WVU School of Dentistry leads a variety of service initiatives to improve oral health. Dental students routinely participate in an array of community-based activities that promote oral health, such as visits to school, hospitals, public health agencies, and senior centers, to stress the importance of oral healthcare.