A dentist from India who is making a new home for herself and her family in the USA, I hope very much to be accepted to your distinguished DDS Program for International Dentists so that I can resume my career in dentistry here in America, giving my all to what is closest to my heart, the practice of dentistry - especially dental care for the underserved. In 2017, I finished my MHA Degree which is central to my central focus on helping the underserved.
Over the years, I have gained extensive experience in dentistry in private as well as public sectors. I am convinced that ultimately my contribution to dentistry here in America will be furthered by my having earned the MHA Degree and learned a great deal about creative ways to help the underserved in particular. I have valuable administrative knowledge and skills that I look forward to putting to a lifetime of good use after earning the doctoral degree in Dentistry.
Values play an important role in my life and they are primarily what shaped me as an individual, especially the moral imperatives that I learned from my grandmother. I see her influence as foremost in why I have given so much of myself to working with refugees and asylees so far; and why marginalized populations with little-to-no access to dental care will always be central to my professional focus. I have worked with underprivileged population both in India and in the USA and have become especially comfortable in the exercise of my listening skills for these vulnerable members of our society. My intense devotion to the underserved and my efforts to attend to their needs has made me a more compassionate human being which I believe is especially critical for the dentistry professional. I am a holistic thinker and I seek to make sustainable contributions that are a good investment of our time and energy as a society, especially in the care of those members of our community that have the greatest need. I do not want to focus my own time exclusively, therefore, on treatments. But, rather, I seek lifetime engagement not only with working to enhance patient outcomes but also devoting myself to contributing to preventive services and educational awareness of the importance of oral health; and smoking cessation in particular.
It was difficult for me to convince my family in India that it was best for me to move far away and build my profession on the other side of the world. This was especially true because I was a girl, and the pull of tradition is very strong, with many families, even well-educated, middle class families like mine, still observing a double standard with different priorities for girls. Nevertheless, I put my career first and making a permanent move to America was in the best interests of my career in dentistry, the level of education that I might achieve and the contribution that I might be able to make over the course of my professional lifetime. If I am selected to participate in your competitive program, my family will be most proud, back in India as well as here in the USA; and I will be happier than I can possibly imagine, the dream of being able to give my all to dentistry 24/7, setting the stage for ongoing lifelong learning alongside practice and service to the underserved. My plate will be full and so also will be my heart.
My respect and yearning for advanced education and my passion for teaching as well as learning leaves me hoping that, at some point in my career, I will have the profound privilege of teaching dentistry in some capacity, perhaps orienting and helping to train new international dentists and in this way give something back to the dental community. My devotion to education is demonstrated by the fact that I earned a scholarship based on academic excellence for the first year of my MHA program and also won an academic award at a state-level competition as a graduate student.
Currently, I have two professional positions, one as an office assistant at a dental clinic and another as an assistant to an Orthodontist. I am learning a lot in both positions that will help me to hit the ground running in your program and excel. Previously, I also had the invaluable experience of working in the coordination of medical services for newly arrived refugees in America. In this position, I learned a lot that I hope will be useful down the road in my quest to do all that I can to help the underserved, including refugees. Volunteering is especially close to my heart and I volunteered for various school health programs in India, educating school children on oral hygiene and I also worked as a volunteer with refugee and immigrant communities in India, providing dental care.
In terms of research, I have a special interest and read widely in the area of Orofacial Oncology and its treatment. I am most concerned about the devastating levels of oral cancer covering most of the planet, especially in India, and it would be a special honor for me to participate in research in this area.
My hobbies include throwball, ping pong, Zumba and painting – all of which refresh me for another day giving my all to dentistry.
I thank you for considering my application.