Our faculty members are not only dedicated to teaching, but also actively work in their respective fields as scholars, consultants and writers. In 2012, Robin Matloff, Associate Professor, R.D.H., J.D., was invited by well-known textbook author Jill Nield-Gehrig to contribute to her Seventh Edition of Fundamentals of Periodontal Instrumentation and Advanced Root Instrumentation. This highly regarded textbook is considered by instructors as a significant guide in the education of dental hygiene students.

Expertise shines in classroom

Robin Matloff stated, “I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity to contribute to this Nield-Gehrig textbook as it is one we use in our own program. For our students, it’s important for them to see their professors involved in scholarly work like this because it communicates to them that the Dental Hygiene Program at Mount Ida College is a quality program and institution, led by experts active in shaping the profession of dental hygiene.”

The Fundamentals of Periodontal Instrumentation and Advanced Root Instrumentation provides faculty and students with a guide to learning periodontal instrumentation. The chapters take a highly visual, step-by-step approach to basic and advanced dental hygiene. In this edition, new technologies and regulations in the field are explored. Additionally, the textbook features detailed information on the application of concepts ranging from patient positioning to root concavities.

Leading the campus community

Professor Robin Matloff is a tenured Associate Professor of Dental Hygiene. She began her career here in 1999 and teaches a variety of dental hygiene courses, including Clinical Dental Hygiene, Medical Emergencies, Pain Management, Dental Ethics and Practice Management and Dental Hygiene Theory, along with Instrumentation and Instrument Sharpening courses. She served as the Program Director for the Dental Hygiene Program from 2003 to 2007. In addition, Professor Matloff is very active in our community, leading campus wide presentations for students, faculty and staff.

Students in our Funeral Service Program dedicate themselves to helping individuals, families, and communities in times of grief. Joyce Hofstra, Adjunct Professor, B.S., creates student success through her enthusiasm, passion, and the occasional class outing to aid in the path of discovery. Her specialized knowledge, extensive experience, and real-world mindset provide funeral service majors with the cutting-edge techniques and skills they need to know for graduation and beyond.

Alumna returns home to teach

Hofstra’s career in funeral service began at our campus and, since that time, she has come full circle in returning as an adjunct professor. In 1972, she graduated summa cum laude from the New England Institute, now the School of Applied Science. At the start of her career, she became a licensed Funeral Director in Massachusetts and managed the Hofstra Funeral Home (started by her father-in-law). In 2002, Hofstra decided to share her learning with students, and came home to teach in the Department of Funeral Service. Her courses include: Introduction to Funeral Directing, History of American Funeral Directing, Merchandising, and Mortuary Law.

Lifelong learning in funeral service

As a lifelong learner, Professor Hofstra’s own education has been enhanced by our course offerings. For instance, she completed a research project on the bird flu that has reappeared in Asia in recent months. From this experience, she brings her knowledge into the classroom, teaching how local governments handle large-scale illnesses and deaths with emphasis on funeral directors as “first responders.” Additionally, through class trips to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, her students receive first-hand learning on the Egyptian methods of embalming. Students also acquire facts on how cremations are handled through visits to the Mount Auburn Cemetery in Watertown. Upon graduation, students are well-prepared for the funeral service industry with Hofstra acting as a mentor in their future careers.

Eager to expand their horizons, Mount Ida students are studying abroad in international destinations across the globe. While most Mustangs are lucky to visit one country during their studies, Molly Christian ’16, a double major in applied forensic science and psychology, visited six countries in Central America during winter break on the Semester at Sea’s Enrichment Voyage.

The MV Explorer

In the fall 2012, Robin Melavalin, Director of the Center for Global Connections, approached Christian with the idea of spending winter break in Central America. Since Christian was recommended for her passion for intercultural learning, she was selected to accompany Professor Gail Gabriel aboard the MV Explorer, a modern passenger ship that circumnavigates the globe. On her voyage, she experienced the history, culture and arts of Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and Mexico, while enjoying field excursions and service opportunities.
“My favorite part of the trip was interacting with the people I met in every country,” said Christian. “I saw culture through their eyes, which made my excursion more real, more human. Seeing that these individuals were not any different from me was a beautiful thing.”

Global learning

Although Christian is only a sophomore, she has already developed a global perspective from her Enrichment Voyage. In regards to her academics, she wants to pursue disaster psychology where she can deal with post-traumatic stress disorder victims in case of mass causality events. After graduation, she hopes that her knowledge can extend beyond the United States to help citizens around the world.
“I want to be able to respond to a scene to help people who are affected by large scale disaster events,” stated Christian. “There is so much more than just the psychical injuries, the emotional effects need the guidance of psychologists. I plan to continue to travel to broaden my viewpoint through traveling.”