Jill Pyle has been announced as the new chair of the Dental Hygiene program at Missouri Southern State University.
While she may be new to the role, she’s by no means a stranger to the program or the school.
“I got my bachelor’s degree in biology in 1995, as well as minors in chemistry and paralegal studies,” she said. “I came back and went through the dental hygiene program in 1999. I worked in private practice for the last 22 years, and for the last five years I’ve also been an adjunct instructor in the dental clinic.”
She’s also been brushing up on her teaching skills, receiving her master’s of education degree during commencement on May 14.
“I knew I wanted to do something in this field, so I got a job as a dental assistant,” said Pyle. “That’s how I fell in love with dentistry. At the time, my supervising dentist encouraged me to come back to school for the dental hygiene program.
“I love helping patients, providing patient care and building relationships. When I came to Missouri Southern, I fell in love with being an educator. It’s the best of both worlds.”
Pyle lives in Carl Junction with her husband, David, who serves as assistant superintendent of schools there. They have two children, Dylan and Lily.
Her vision for the program is to maintain a standard of excellence while putting further emphasis on community outreach.
“Missouri Southern is an excellent school. I’m excited for the future of our program,” she said. “We have a very good success rate when it comes to passing national written and clinical boards. Our faculty is outstanding. They are extremely well trained, very caring and provide an excellent education to our students.
“We currently have two grants that allow us to provide care to children in rural schools. As the KCU dental school comes to the area, we look forward to partnering with them to provide a place where lower-income families in our area to go to receive total care.”
For more information about MSSU’s Dental Hygiene program, visit https://mssu.edu/dental-hygiene.