Dr. Allison Bonsall and Dr. Sharon Osakue (contributed photo)

SANTA CRUZ—Dientes Community Dental care has launched Santa Cruz County’s first dental residency program, in partnership with and sponsored by NYU Langone Hospitals, the world’s largest postdoctoral dental program to train dentists in the public health setting.

In this inaugural year, Dientes is hosting two residents: Dr. Allison Bonsall and Dr. Sharon Osakue. The pair will provide dental care as they learn more about community health center service. They have already seen 350 patients in their first 60 days.

Accredited by the American Dental Association’s Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA), the NYU Langone Hospitals Advanced Education in General Dentistry (AEGD) residency program aims to turn accomplished dental-school graduates into advanced clinicians, while residents concurrently provide oral healthcare to vulnerable communities with a focus on improving access to dental care. 

Bonsall hails from Medical University of South Carolina. 

“It has been rewarding to care for patients,” Bonsall said, “while gaining professional growth through the mentorship of the Dientes attendings.” 

Osakue, a graduate from Marquette University School of Dentistry, agreed. 

“Dientes has such a great team atmosphere,” Osakue said. “I’m constantly surrounded by friendly faces who are always willing to help.”

At the launch of the dental residency program, Dientes EVP of Operation, Dr. Sepi Taghvaei said the organization is excited about giving their staff opportunities to grow in their careers. 

“At Dientes, it’s about nurturing a passion for health center service and creating better oral health for our community,” Taghvaei said. 

The residency program is the latest addition to Dientes’ workforce investment programs, which include scholarships for Registered Dental Assistant with Extended Functions, sponsorships of National Health Service Corp scholars, and internships with Cabrillo College for hygienists and County Office of Education for dental assistants.

For information, visit dientes.org.

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


  1. Yesterday 1/25/23, I came in for an extraction and since my most favorite dr. Kim wasn’t available, I’m pretty sure that it was Dr. Allison Bonsall who was my dentist..I think she introduced herself as “Dr. Ally?” the minute she walked in I felt so at ease and thought” If not Dr. Kim, Dr. Ally is my next choice”..She was so attentive and so kind..Before coming to Dientes I was so claustrophobic and Dr. Kim’s demeaner and humming(lol)calmed my nerves and cured me of my anxieties. I was so saddened that she wasn’t available but now, if not Dr. Kim I will for sure ask for Dr. “Ally?” Please let the Dr. know I felt so at ease with her and felt safe and calm in the chair..Thank you so much Dientes for giving many of us who don’t have a lot, Drs. who make us feel important and make us feel like we matter..You are the very best and I can’t say enough good about all of your Drs. and staff..thank you..

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  2. Oops! I just realized I didn’t post on Dientes site!!! Oh well…Now you know how great the program you wrote about is working..lol

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