2 Statements for the same applicant follow, one general and the second directed to a particular university
1. General Statement, not directed to any specific university.
Armenian International Dentist, IDP, DDS/DMD, Children and the Elderly, Pediatric and Geriatric
A dentist from Armenia who could not be more dedicated to professional advancement, I came to America to make a new home for myself primarily because of the dream of attending your program, earning the doctoral degree in my field, and receiving the finest dental education available. Having completed an undergraduate degree in the USA before returning to Armenia where I completed dental school, my ability in English is high as a result of this practice; and I have had the opportunity to work and socialize with people from a great variety of social ethnic backgrounds, especially as a result of now having immigrated to America.
Now making a new, permanent home for myself in the USA, I hope very much to be accepted to an IDP. Earning the DDS/DMD degree will enable me to continue my dream of professional advancement. During the past year, I have worked as a Dental Assistant and learned how to store and organize charts as well as a host of other responsibilities. I have become familiar with several dental software programs, as a result of serving alongside an oral surgeon and periodontal specialist. This exposure has provided me with a solid, basic understanding of many if not most aspects of the practice of dentistry in the US.
I volunteer a lot of my time with the Elder Life Program (HELP) at XXXX University Medical Center, where I have been continuing to cultivate my special love for the elderly, particularly those that suffer from dementia. One of several extensively-trained volunteers, we make daily visits to keep our patients as fully oriented as possible, working to maintain their cognitive status and functionality. We provide assistance as necessary, with feeding as well as companionship.
I believe that my dental education at home in Armenia, provides me with a solid foundation for attending dental school in the USA, where I now reside. I fell in love with America as a college student earning my BS Degree with Honors in Biology, looking ahead to dental school. During my fourth year as an international undergraduate student at Montclair State University, I had the opportunity to volunteer in a Dental office shadowing both the general dentist and the oral surgeon. This has helped me to become a valuable team player, demonstrating perseverance, passion, and dedication to dentistry.
My mother, a dentist who is now retired, has always been my foremost role model, and I seek to emulate her noble ideals, hard work, and tenacity in the face of obstacles. Throughout the course of my five years of dental school, I was active with a variety of volunteer programs and I especially enjoy working with children as well as the elderly patients. I would often go every Saturday to the south of the country in Armenia to be part of a government program to teach parents in underdeveloped area, how important dental hygiene is for their children, advising them with respect to diet in accordance with a child’s age, and how important it was for them to identify signs of oral disease early on through regular checkups.
During my third year of dental school I began to pay special attention to the area of Orthodontics and I particularly look forward to advanced training in this area after earning my doctoral degree in Dentistry. I have participated in research concerning obstructive sleep apnea syndrome and the kind of orthodontic treatments that help to ease these symptoms. After finishing dental school and before immigrating to the USA, I worked in private practice and completed countless procedures on stained and discolored teeth, worn, chipped, broken, misaligned, misshapen, and gapped anterior teeth. Cosmetic dentistry has helped me to further appreciate the importance of manual agility and exceptional hand-eye coordination.
I served my community in my own private practice for X years and found it enormously rewarding, serving a small community with many children. I was also able to continue my education in Orthodontics. I relished being a dentist making an often immediate and dramatic improvement in people’s lives. The Master’s Program in Orthodontics that I completed in Albania was very competitive, and many of my teachers were Italian as well as Albanian Orthodontics. I learned a great deal about the use of a variety of different orthodontic appliances to treat patients with open bite in deciduous and mixed dentition, for example. My advanced training in Orthodontics confirmed my choice of specialty, to which I look forward to returning to at some point further along in my career, after I have first earned my DDS/DMD Degree.
I have become accomplished in the application of slow and fast palatal expanders and how to manage patients, especially small children, for treatments requiring making use of these appliances. Each day, I more fully appreciate the importance of patient education and how early treatment can sometimes eliminate the need for braces in the future. I keenly look forward to a professional lifetime of research and practice in the area of Orthodontics, especially with respect to craniofacial growth and treatment sequencing.
I thank you for your consideration of my application.
Personal Statement for CAAPID, Directed to a specific university:
At the center of my world stands helping the underserved as a dentistry professional – on personal as well as professional levels. I have two special loves in this regard, the very old and the very young, and I hope for a long lifetime that is full of both special groups, giving to each one my very best. It is for this reason that I hope to be selected to a DDS/DMD program for international dentists. I feel strongly that I am the best fit with the IDP at UXX for a variety of reasons. This is where I would have the strongest support base that would enable me to give 24/ 7 to my International Dentist Program.
I am especially drawn to the elderly who are neglected by or have lost their families, and often many or all of their friends in the community. One of my long-term goals is to establish some sort of a program that helps to provide affordable quality dental care for the elderly in need. My other long-term goal is returning at some point to my native Armenia and setting up a dental clinic to provide free dental care for orphaned children. Armenia is very much a Third World country and the government does almost nothing to help in this area, with the care of orphans depending entirely upon private charitable efforts and donations. I see providing free dental care to as many orphaned children in Armenia as possible to be a realistic goal that I will be able to achieve further on in my career if I were to be accepted to your doctoral program in dentistry. Having excelled through six years of dental school in Armenia, doing rotations in the different specialties, I became convinced that pediatric dentistry held a special place in my heart. For me, Pediatric Dentistry is more than a career. I see it as the most profound of privileges to make sustainable, lifetime contributions to the oral health and self-esteem of a child.
My dental school curriculum in Armenia was rigorous, with a very challenging didactic and clinical curriculum with between eight and eleven courses in any given semester. I learned to master time management, staying balance with career and family. I especially appreciate the fact that we were allowed the opportunity to do the bulk of our clinic hours in underserved communities. It was heart breaking to see how hard families in these communities worked and struggled just to feed their children. These experiences were especially foundational for me since they shaped the character of the dental provider that I seek to become.
When I immigrated to the United States to join my husband, I did so with the keen desire to re-start my career in dentistry by re-training through the completion of a doctoral program for international dentists. Since my arrival in America, I have been working towards this goal. I became a Dental Assistant and returned to my studies with great diligence. Now that my twin girls are X years old, I feel that this is the optimal time for me to return to full time study.
I found studying for the NBDE parts I and II, to be exhilarating, pushing me out of my comfort zone, and becoming one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. One of the main reasons why I so love the United States of America is for giving me the opportunity to struggle to achieve my professional dreams through hard work and determination. I also love the diversity of the USA, and the opportunity to treat not only patients from diverse socioeconomic, but also ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. I am especially dedicated to the importance of providing not-notch dental care for every single patient, regardless of their socioeconomic background.
Even in America, many people underestimate the critical importance of pediatric dental care and its implications on a child’s overall health. My central purpose as a dental professional, in addition to practice, will be to communicate the importance of pediatric dentistry in the communities I serve. To the extent to which it is in my power, I will give my all to informing parents about the negative implications of poor oral health on the overall development of their children. I will also strive to give children the necessary tools to develop and maintain proper oral hygiene as they mature into adults, providing future generations with the tools necessary to develop into healthy adults as a result of healthy lifestyle.
I have successfully completed both parts of the NBDE and now look forward with great determination and zeal to continuing my preparation for entrance into my profession at the doctoral level here in the USA, hopefully at the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry at the University of Southern California.
I thank you for considering my application.