St. Clair College and Prep Doctors have signed an agreement which will help foreign dentists learn the essentials of Canadian dental business practices while taking important steps toward earning equivalency from the National Dental Examination Board.
This unique agreement co-signed by Prep Doctors CEO Firas Abu Saleh and St. Clair College President Patti France, gives internationally trained dentists the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in Canada’s growing dental industry. Over the course of two years in the Dental Business Diploma & Equivalency Program at St. Clair, students will learn about accounting for dentistry, business communications, economics, Canadian culture and more while receiving thorough preparation for the NDEB equivalency process.
Dr. Marwan Al-Rayes, co-founder and Chief Learning Officer of Prep Doctors, is a Windsor native who attended J.L. Forster Secondary School and played soccer behind St. Clair College as a teenager. Over twenty years later, Al-Rayes says it feels great to be able to sign this agreement and make an impact for the people who strive to be dentists and hope to one day live in North America.
"This is about giving back to the community and making the industry more accessible. We can provide a huge step to someone hopefully," said Al-Rayes. "Everyone’s dream is to come to Canada or North America and live the American Dream. It is a huge opportunity, not only by getting them access into Canada, but being a member of the elite class in Canada."
Al-Rayes says Prep Doctors has an initial target goal of recruiting 50 students annually to St. Clair but hope to have upwards of 100 students and even bigger numbers in the future.
"If we look at the number of dentists graduating from Canadian schools, I don’t believe it is sufficient for the population. So, we do need foreign skill to actually give people the quality of healthcare they deserve here in Canada," said Al-Rayes. "I think the collaboration between St. Clair and Prep Doctors is mixing healthcare with business, which is a unique aspect in dentistry. It's different from medicine and pharmacy in the sense that dentistry is a healthcare profession that also has a strong business side."
Firas Abu Saleh, CEO of Prep Doctors, is a Harvard Business School graduate who co-founded the organization with Al-Rayes with a shared vision of creating an inclusive learning space for dentists all over the globe. Abu Saleh believes extending this collaboration with St. Clair College will help Prep Doctors expand its reach to potential candidates in the international market and bring more dentists to Canada.
"Based on St. Clair’s experience with agents and international student recruitment, this is a great addition. It is an area of strength that is really helpful for us," Abu Saleh said. "We are used to working with local dentists who are already in Canada so by working with St. Clair and its name-recognition will help us move forward and expand the market."
More information on the Dental Business Diploma & Equivalency Program can be found here: Prep Doctors @ St. Clair College | St. Clair College (stclaircollege.ca)
- Brett Hedges