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CAAPID Application, Indian Woman born and raised in Canada, Spanish, Foreign-Trained Dentist

Updated: Mar 22

I could not be happier in my current professional position as a Teaching Assistant in Endodontics at the University of XXXX. I teach second-year dental students the basics of Endodontics primarily by demonstrating techniques in the dental simulation lab. This experience has helped me to better appreciate how much I want to combine the practice of Endodontics with teaching Endodontics in the future. Thus, I am an international dentist who is especially highly motivated to excel in your Advanced Placement DDS Program.

While born and raised in Canada, my family is from India and I decided to return there for dental school. My 5 years in India earning my degree in dentistry will always be with me, especially because of the way that it enhanced my appreciation for the cause of oral health advancement in the Developing World and my dedication to helping the underserved. I look forward to a professional lifetime practicing dentistry here in North America; but I also look forward to returning to India at some point in my career to teach Endodontics. I moved to India while still 17 years old to begin dental school in 2007, returned to Canada after completing dental school in 2012, and then moved to Texas in 2015 for my preceptorship in Endodontics. I am currently living in XXXX, TX which I very much enjoy and I have spent this last year taking advantage of opportunities to practice my Spanish which has been rapidly improving. This language is especially dear to my heart and I work very hard to improve it because I see it as so very useful for helping the underserved here in North America, with increasing numbers of immigrants who speak mostly Spanish.

One of the reasons why I left for India immediately following my graduation from high school was so that I could spend time with my grandmother who was suffering from cancer. Within a few months, I was also a full time student at the Christian Dental College in Ludhiana, Punjab, which allowed me to continue to spend weekends and holidays with my grandmother. During my senior year of high school, I applied to BSc programs and was accepted by the University of Western Ontario, the University of Toronto and Ryerson University. I did not follow through with those applications, however, because at that time I had made up my mind to go to India. Going to the land of my family’s origin was a great draw, along with my grandmother; soon I adjusted to going straight to dental school rather than first earning a degree in the physical sciences. The vast need for oral health care in India helped to make me a highly motivated dentist with a keen awareness of and concern for the desperate plight of India’s poorer classes in terms of having little to no access to adequate dental care.

My long term goal is to practice dentistry here in North America as well as India and to build and cultivate ties with the North American academic world. I look forward to balancing teaching and clinical work in the years to come. Central to my plans are frequent and lengthy return visits to India to conduct dental camps in rural areas as well as teaching, maybe once a year, at the Christian Dental College where I received my own dental education. Especially as a woman, I am very much troubled by the way in which some women in rural areas of India have no dental care because they are from very conservative sectors of our society that insist that women see only a female dentist; often, there are no women dentists available in rural areas and small villages and I also want to address this issue, working to identify and target for care specifically that segment of the Indian female population who can only be seen by a female dentist.

While a dental student in India, I participated in extra-curricular activities: volleyball, track and field, basketball, dance, and extempore speeches. I was active in community outreach programs in rural villages all around the state of Punjab, serving in remote areas where patients could not afford to pay but required immediate dental treatment.

After earning my DDS, I plan to pursue a residency position in Endodontics. I gained experience working as a dentist in India and have worked for years now as a Dental Observer & Volunteer Assistant (2012-2015) in Canada, Florida, and California.

I also spent long hours doing clinical shadowing at XXXX University in Montreal in 2014. Here in Houston, I have been serving as a community volunteer at The XXXX Day Care Center since November of 2015 so as to enhance my community involvement.

Many of the patients to which I have attended here in Houston speak only Spanish. Two months into my program, therefore, I enrolled in online Spanish classes. I can now speak basic Spanish with my patients; enough for us to understand each other and the language barrier no longer seems to get in the way. I plan on continuing to improve my Spanish until I can speak it fluently at the service of the underserved to which I look forward to devoting as much time as possible as I move forward in dentistry.

I thank you for considering my application.

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