Washington dental school names founding dean

Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences in Yakima, Wash., has tapped Fotinos Panagakos, DMD, as founding dean of its upcoming dental school, the Yakima Herald-Republic reported March 24. 

Dr. Panagakos is the associate dean for research and postdoctoral affairs at the West Virginia University School of Dentistry in Morgantown. He will begin his new role remotely in May while serving in his current position in West Virginia through the rest of the academic year. 

The Washington dental school is still in development and needs to submit documentation to the Commission on Dental Accreditation and recruit faculty, but the university plans to accept its first class of students in the fall of 2025. 

The school will train dentists for rural and underserved communities. The majority of Eastern Washington has a shortage of dental professionals, and the University of Washington in Seattle has the only other dental school in the state.

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