Tomorrow’s Workforce

Marshfield dental education facility

In July 2014, the Wisconsin Dental Association commended Marshfield Clinic for its decision to focus on existing and successful oral health access programs and to return a $10 million building grant to the State of Wisconsin.


Final Report: WDA-Delta Dental of Wisconsin Workforce 10-Year Forecast

The Wisconsin Dental Association, in conjunction with Delta Dental of Wisconsin, conducted its second 10-year workforce report and released it in January 2010. The purpose of this research is to continually gauge whether or not there will be enough dentists to continue to meet the demand for dental care into the future.


Final report: Wisconsin Dental Education Feasibility Study

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ Dental Advisory Committee released its final report that analyzes the various ways the state could invest in dental education and improve access or oral health care in rural and underserved areas.


Marquette University School of Dentistry

MUSOD, located near downtown Milwaukee, is Wisconsin’s only dental school. Students rotate through a network of clinics located in urban and rural settings.

Founded in 1894, the Marquette University School of Dentistry is a fully accredited, nationally recognized school with a reputation for graduating highly skilled, caring dentists who give back to their communities.

Historically, over 70 percent of in-state students and 10 percent of out-of-state students have remained in Wisconsin to practice after graduation.

More recently, based on the MUSOD graduating classes for 2012 and 2013, over 75 percent of Wisconsin residents and 25 percent of nonresidents have remained in the state to practice after graduation; 25 percent of MUSOD students graduating from those classes are in service or rural practices (this includes military, federally qualified health centers, National Health Service Corps /NHSC, and community health clinics). For the class of 2015, eight students are NHSC scholars and five are military scholars.

Currently, 61 percent of all practicing dentists in Wisconsin are MUSOD graduates.

A mid-sized dental school, MUSOD has recently increased its class size from 80 to 100 students.  MUSOD’s goal is to have 100 pre-doctoral students in each of its four-year classes (50 Wisconsin residents and 50 nonresidents) for a total pre-doctoral student population of 400 when fully phased in by the fall of 2016.


MUSOD nonresident tuition for the 2014-15 academic year is $54,220. Due to the state’s Contract for Dental Education (or capitation contract) under the Higher Educational Aids Board, the in-state tuition rate is $45,560.

The state of Wisconsin provides a tuition subsidy for certain dental students who are Wisconsin state residents. As with any governmental appropriation, the exact amount is subject to change as part of the legislative process. The expected state subsidy for 2014-15 is $4,330 per term per Wisconsin resident, but is subject to change at any time.

State Funding

Each year, the state provides funding for three programs to help MUSOD serve Wisconsin residents:

  1. $2.3 million under a Department of Health Services’ Dental Clinical Contract to provide oral health care to underserved populations; funding has been decreased and has not increased since 1997.  For the period July 2012 through June 2013, MUSOD treated nearly 30,000 patients in over 101,000 patient visits from 66 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties. The value of services provided in Milwaukee MUSOD clinics alone is approximately $15 million for over a six-fold return on the state’s investment.
  1. As previously noted, the state provides a tuition subsidy of $8,660 per Wisconsin resident; when this is fully phased in to accommodate the increased class size it will help up to 200 in-state residents to offset costs of attending MUSOD.
  1. The state also provides some $54,000 through the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to support a school-based sealant program on Milwaukee’s south side.