Helping others in an independent career.

Pre-dentistry is not a major at Southeast Missouri State University. It is possible to gain preparation for dental school while pursuing any academic major in the University.

Most students find that biology coursework required by dental schools, and for preparation for the DAT, makes the biomedical sciences option in biology an attractive major. The Biology: Biomedical Sciences option is designed especially for students in the pre-health professions. Students will work with the pre-dental advisor during their first semester at Southeast.

What You'll Do

Most dental schools have similar pre-professional course requirements. It is recommended, however, that you check out the specific requirements for the schools you are interested in and include these in your planning. For example, three schools require calculus. Make your “pool” of potential schools as big as possible. There are 54 accredited dental schools in the United States. This information can be shared by the pre-dental advisor in the Department of Biology.

Outcomes & Careers

  • $155k


    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for a dentist is $155,040.

  • $213k

    Dentist Specialist

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for a dentist specialist is $212,740.

  • $236k+

    Oral Surgeon

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for an oral and maxillofacial surgeon is $239,200+.

What You’ll Study

Because there is no pre-dental degree, you’ll select another area to complete your undergraduate degree. You’ll complete a minimum of 120 credit hours to complete this degree, including the general education requirements and at least 39 senior division hours.



"Being able to see someone smile after years of hiding behind their hands is by far the most motivating and exciting thing about working in the dental field. I am able to change someone’s life simply by using my skills, and that is an unbelievably rewarding feeling."

Dr. Danielle Riordan

A portrait of Dr. Danielle Riordan

Hands-on Learning

You’ll gain hands-on real-world experience through research opportunities and internships.

Getting the Job

Your education is just one piece to launching an extraordinary career. Once you’ve mastered the material, you still have to find the job you want, make the right connections, sell your knowledge and experience—and if all this is giving you anxiety, don’t panic. SEMO’s Career Services office is here to help you with the next step. They’ll provide the expertise and support you need, so you’re landing your dream job in no time.


"I was the chair of the Missouri Mission of Mercy, which provided free dental care to those in need in our community as well as participate in eight dental missions in Haiti. I am grateful I’m in a profession that can help others."

Dr. Janet Ruopp

Portrait of Dr. Janet Ruopp

Become a Redhawk.

Do more than dream about the future. Take the first steps to make it all happen.

Contact Us
Rhodes Hall 224
Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 6200
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701