From an early age, I wanted to ‘make a difference’ rather than just ‘make a living’ and so decided to work in healthcare. Dentistry attracted me because, even as a child, I saw that the dentist could make a dramatic and, often, almost immediate difference in people’s lives by relieving acute pain. As my interest grew, I became more aware of the ability of a skilled dentist to improve the appearance and dietary choices of patients and to improve their general health and decided on my career path which I have never regretted.
It is my goal to qualify to practice in the US and to work in the kind of deprived and underserved communities with which I am already very familiar from my work to date. I am particularly interested in providing effective preventative instruction to the general population, especially children and to the less advantaged in society. I would hope to create relationships with schools and youth organizations to help educate the young in basic dental health. It is clear that there remains much work to be done in the matter of effective preventative education in the US and the key, I believe, is to start with the very young. I am also firmly intent on regularly giving my time and skills in impoverished communities and homeless people both here and abroad.
I am a highly qualified and experienced general dentist, Stomatologist and Maxillofacial surgeon, raised and trained in Cuba and with significant work experience in Cuba and countries in Central/South America. As the reader will be aware, training for healthcare professionals in Cuba is excellent and entry is highly competitive. Admission alone is an indication of a high degree of diligence and intelligence but I graduated with a ‘Gold Degree’, which is equivalent to ‘Summa Cum Laude’ in the US, from the prestigious Superior Institute of Medical Sciences of Villa Clara, Cienfuegos.
During the third and fourth years of my undergraduate training, I sacrificed much of my vacation time to work with one of my teachers and a fellow student in a rural community. This experience provided an excellent grounding in basic dentistry, diagnosis and in providing oral and dental preventative education. I also learned much about relating well to patients and gaining their confidence and in reassuring fearful adults and child patients.
After graduation in the specialty of General Integral Stomatology, I successfully applied for a residency program in Maxillofacial Surgery. I started the first year in December 2007 ending in December 2010. I received first class training in Anatomy, Emergency Dentistry, Implantology, Oral Surgery, the use of plasma and biomaterials, pain relief, the treatment of facial and dental injuries and hospital management of dental pathologies, treatment of oral, facial and neck cancer, as well as the importance of prevention and early detection together with the importance of effective cross-disciplinary co-operation. From January 2011 to March 2012 I worked as a specialist in maxillofacial surgery while also practicing as a general dentist in the same hospital.
In April 2012 to work in June 2012 in the Cuban medical mission in Venezuela, where I served as General Dentist and Oral Surgeon in the city of Coro, Falcon State, Venezuela. During July and August 2012 Volunteer in marginalized communities in Colombia carrying out actions of health promotion and prevention of oral diseases and screening for oral cancer.
I was selected to teach students up to, and including, those in their fifth year of training. This was a reflection of my own examination results and the confidence of my own teachers and superiors. I very much enjoyed teaching and hope to undertake some part-time teaching at some point in my future career.
I moved to Louisville, KY in August 2012 and learned about US culture and studied English as a second language, passing Level 6. I have been living in Miami for the last 3 years. For the last two years, I have worked one day each week as a volunteer in a dental clinic to familiarise myself with the professional environment in the US and to ensure that I am aware of current advances in techniques, tools and materials, supplemented by the reading of texts and specialist periodicals.
I am aware of the importance of having outside hobbies and interests when working in a stressful and demanding field. I love all sports especially baseball and am an enthusiastic tennis and soccer player. I visit a gym regularly and, having been raised by the sea, I love to fish. For the past two years, I have worked as a volunteer assisting in the organization and development of children’s tennis tournaments and providing some coaching. I have friends from many social and ethnic backgrounds and enjoy meeting new people from cultures that are unfamiliar to me.
I believe that I have provided evidence of exceptional academic ability, a passion for dentistry, an excellent dental education and significant and broad practical experience. I am confident that I have the potential to excel within the program and to ‘add value’ to it by sharing the many fruits of my experience and training.
Thank you for considering my application.