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Vicki Pizanis, RDH, MS

Adjunct Faculty

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Contact Information


Academic Career

UNM alumni Pizanis received her bachelor’s in dental hygiene in 2005, and completed her master’s in dental hygiene in 2007. Since then, she’s been a faculty member in the UNM dental hygiene program. She currently is a candidate for doctorate of education in the UNM Educational Leadership Program. Her dissertation is focused on clinical education within dental hygiene.

Research Interests

Research interests include clinical education, local anesthesia and international service education. Her research and education projects have drawn over $25,000 for projects she led in Nicaragua, as well as $2.5 million in grant funding for the Novitski Special Needs Clinic at the UNM HSC.

Pizanis has written articles on the oral health status of rural populations in Nicaragua and on international service education within dental hygiene. In addition to writing about head and neck anatomy and technological advances in dental hygiene for textbooks, she also has served as an editorial reviewer for internal dental hygiene manuscripts. 

Professional Memberships

  • American Dental Hygienists Association
  • New Mexico Dental Hygienists Association
  • American Dental Education Association
  • UNM Latin American and Iberian Institute


Brightening smiles amid Nicaragua’s poverty
(Albuquerque Journal; Jun. 24, 2014) ─ A University of New Mexico dental hygiene student examines the teeth of a young boy seated on his mother’s lap during a 2011 trip to Nicaragua.

A future leader for health-care integration
(RDH Magazine, Feb. 2013) ─This month's spotlight focuses on a dental hygienist who recently received the New Mexico Future Leader Award, Professor Vicki Gianopoulos Pizanis.

UNM Dental Hygiene plans to reach out to Nicaragua
(Latin American & Iberian Institute; May 2010) ─ As the first vital step in developing a new international feature of the outreach and clinical community service programs of the UNM Division of Dental Hygiene, Professor and Director, Demetra Logothetis (RDH, MS) and Assistant Professor, Vicki Gianopoulos (RDH, MS) will fly to Nicaragua in late June of 2010 for first-hand research on underserved rural populations in that impoverished Central American country.