Esther Machen (D.D.S. ’10) entered the field of dentistry as a hygienist, but wanted to do more.
“When I was a hygienist, my younger brother had several abscessed teeth and I was frustrated all I could do was ask the dentist to help him,” she says. “I felt that I could not do enough that would really make a difference for people that could not afford dental care.”
Around the same time, Machen’s husband decided to go to medical school. Machen says medical and dental programs are limited in Idaho, so they packed up and moved to Kansas City.
Machen says she still uses her UMKC education every day.
“I truly enjoyed my instructors and have their words running through my head as I am doing a procedure,” she says. “The value of truly caring for all resonated with me.”
Today, the Machens share a building in Idaho Falls where they each see patients. One half is dedicated to Machen Family Medicine. The other half is Machen Family Dentistry.
Although Idaho will always be home, Machen says she and her husband appreciate Kansas City because it was a great place to raise a family.
“We loved that it offered all the benefits of a big city, but still had a small-town feel.”