East Carolina University School of Dental Medicine

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    Greenville, NC
    *Note: Cost calculation does not include living expenses, student loan interest, or loan origination fees. 
    East Carolina University Seal


    East Carolina School of Dental Medicine is located in Greenville, North Carolina. It is one of two dental schools in the state, the other being the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. East Carolina University enrolled its first inaugural class in 2011 and was established to graduate more dental students to serve rural and under-served communities in the area. The dental program places a strong emphasis on service. Students complete nine-week rotations at one of eight community centers located in rural parts of North Carolina. The state ranks 47th in the nation for number of dentists per capita.

    In 2017, there were 536 applicants for a total 52 seats. Although 168 non-residents applied, none were accepted. The majority of the class is female. Community service learning centers are located in Ahoskie, Bolivia, Elizabeth City, Lillington, Lumberton, Sylva, Spruce Pine, and Thomasville. Each clinic accomodates 4-5 students under the supervision of a preceptor.

    Tuition and Fees

    • Tuition:
      • 1st year: $32,449
      • 2nd year: $32,449
      • 3rd year: $32,449
      • 4th year: $21,537
    • Annual Increase: 4-7%
    • Room and Board: 
      • 1st year: $17,933
      • 2nd year: $17,933
      • 3rd year: $17,933
      • 4th year: $11,956
    • Travel:
      • 2nd year: $1,200
      • 4th year: $1,450
    • Personal: 
      • 1st year: $3,048
      • 2nd year: $3,048
      • 3rd year: $3,048
      • 4th year: $2,032
    • Books and Supplies:
      • 1st year: $8,430
      • 2nd year: $6,350
      • 3rd year: $1,920
      • 4th year: $4,537
    • Transportation
      • 1st year: $2,815
      • 2nd year: $2,815
      • 3rd year: $4,104
      • 4th year: $4,455
    • Total Tuition and Fees with 5% annual increase: $245,750


    Applicants who are invited to interview with East Carolina University will speak with an admissions committee member. The following list of interview questions is specific to ECU.

    • “On a scale from deeply integrated to not involved at all, how much do you think dentists should be involved in their community outside of their profession?”
    • “What is one class that proved to be more difficult than you thought, but how did you overcome that?”
    • “If you become a successful practicing dentist, and you have the means to tackle another project, what would that be?”
    • “What are some of your strengths and weaknesses?”
    • “What will you be able to offer our school?”
    • “What is one good deed you have done?”
    • “Tell me a time when you felt that you were treated unequally and how you responded to that.”
    • “What sets you apart from the other candidates?”
    • “Your major seems really interesting, explain why you chose it.”
    • “How do you plan to pay for dental school?”
    • “Why not dental assisting?”
    • “How did you arrive to this point?”
    • “What makes you great?”
    • “Which basketball team do you like?”
    • “Describe a time when you took a class you thought would be easy but turned out differently.”
    • “Where do you see your long-term goals in dentistry?”
    • “Do you believe there is an inequity in dental services in rural areas? Why do you think that?”
    • “How do you feel about working in underserved and rural communities? (I was asked this twice, it’s very important to ECU!)”
    • “Describe a time you failed at leadership.”
    • “You’ve applied to many schools and are a great candidate, what about ECU sticks out?”
    • “Why do you want to come to ECU?”
    • “What ethical considerations must we deal with in dental schools and in practicing dentistry?”
    • “Why do you think you are a good fit for ECU?”
    • “How do you think you will adjust to a small city?”
    • “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?”
    • “Tell me about your leadership experience.”
    • “Do you prefer to work individually or in a group/team?”
    • “What do you think will be your biggest challenge in dental school?”
    • “What are some of the community service activities you’ve done recently?”
    • “Describe a crisis and how you dealt with it.”
    • “Have you thought of a career in dental academia?”
    • “What is something unique that you could contribute to the inaugural class?”
    • “How do morals/ethics apply to the dental industry and why are they important?”
    • “Have you done much volunteer work?”
    • “Who is your mentor?”
    • “How do you deal with hardships?”
    • “What is the last good deed you’ve done?”
    • “What is on your long-term bucket list?”
    • “Off the wall question: if you won the lottery and decided to travel the world, what would you do?”
    • “What do you bring to the class, what kind of niche do you offer?”
    • “What kinds of things as a dentist would you do for the community?”
    • “Would you rather be a big fish in a little sea, or a little fish in a big sea?”
    • “If your best friend were in the room, what would they say are your best and worst characteristics?”
    • “What are three characteristics a dentist should have?”
    • “Would you be able to work in a group?”
    • “Describe a time when something went wrong and how you reacted.”
    • “What was one class you were very excited about, but turned out differently than you thought?”
    • “Has there ever been a time where you’ve been treated unfairly? Tell me about it.”
    • “If you got accepted at UNC and ECU which would you chose?”
    • “Tell me what sets you apart from other candidates.”
    • “What is your highest characteristic and what is your lowest characteristic?”
    • “How would you be able to change dentistry?”


    The mission of the East Carolina University School of Dental Medicine is to:

    • Prepare leaders with outstanding clinical skills, an ethical bearing, sound judgment, and a passion to serve.
    • Provide educational opportunities for academically qualified individuals from historically underrepresented groups, disadvantaged backgrounds, and underserved areas.
    • Provide and enhance oral health services for underserved North Carolinians through implementation of community-oriented service learning and interprofessional collaborations.
    • Foster a learning environment where collaboration, creativity, diversity and professionalism are embraced.
    • Influence future clinical practice and dental education through research, innovation and discovery.