Born and raised in India, I immigrated to the USA at the age of 14, settling in New York. After completion of my undergraduate degree, I decided to go to dental school (2014-2018) where I fell deeply in love with my career, everything about dentistry, especially oral surgery. Thus, the highlight of my life was my clinical rotations in oral surgery and I was on track to begin an oral surgery residency program in July of this year, 2018. But, my father suffered a stroke in May of 2017 just as I was applying for residency programs. Indian families are very close, and I was torn. I decided that I simply could not commit to giving my all to a residency program for 4 to 6 years unless I first took some time off to help my family.
I decided to apply instead to a one-year general dentistry residency as required by the State of New York and was fortunate to be selected to my first choice: New York Presbyterian at Columbia University Medical Center. This is an amazing residency program where I will spend a lot of time in the oral surgery department gaining additional experience. After completing this residency program in July of 2019, I hope to begin my second, longer, intensive residency program in Oral Surgery. My father is doing much better now, making a nearly full recovery and has returned to work and I am fully determined to give my all to oral surgery for the balance of my professional life, hopefully beginning next year in your distinguished residency program.
The operating room, instruments, chair, has become the absolute center of my world, the picture-perfect place in my mind and heart. I thrive on the control, the systematic, planned approach, and pride myself on my ability to think quickly and decisively. During my first year of dental school, I had the profound privilege of observing an orthognathic case which made an enormous impression. For the next several years of dental school, I persistently returned to observe more orthognathic and other complex surgery cases and I was always mesmerized by the chemistry of the surgical team, the cutting-edge quality of the instruction that I was receiving and the most impressive outcomes that were being achieved. Throughout dental school, my time spent with the OMFS department was special, and nothing excited me more than engaging extensively with residents and learning all that I could from them. My fullest dedication to the long-term goal of specializing in oral surgery was confirmed on a daily basis. I have studied very closely the ties of dentistry with medicine and anesthesia and the historical emergence of oral surgery as a unique discipline characterized by breathtaking, constant innovation and interdisciplinary advancement in the alleviation of suffering and the restoration of esthetics as well as function. My time spent with the OMFS department enhanced my understanding of the vast scope of treatments covered by OMFS. I will never forget the sheer awe that overwhelmed me when I assisted with my first total TMJ replacement, as well as a partial neck dissection the next day.
Many unique life experiences have guided and prepared me for a dynamic career as an oral surgeon. My extensive athletic involvement early on in life set the stage for my adeptness at team function. As a varsity soccer player in high school and continuing on in competitive soccer leagues as an undergraduate student as well as dental school, teamwork is my second nature. I want to make that goal and it takes all of us working together; teamwork has always been thrilling to me, both on the soccer field and in the operating room. I have played soccer for over 14 years now and repeatedly encountered teammates and opponents that have pushed me to my limits, mentally and physically, providing me with the taste of defeat as well as victory and the wisdom that comes from both of them. I especially thrive on constructive criticism from the coach and teammates in soccer as well as with our teams in the operating room. Determined, I am never discouraged, I just try harder and carry on until each issue is resolved. Always being a member of the team that can be fully counted upon is my first priority.
As I enter upon the next step of my career, the fullest immersion experience possible in oral surgery, I could not feel better prepared and more excited to begin, serving alongside and in teams with like-minded colleagues and peers, learning together from our mentors, well on our way to cutting-edge professional standing ourselves. I believe firmly that human achievement is best gauged by the extent to which one is able, throughout the course of their lifetime, to aid their fellowman and I can think of no other way that I could make such a significant contribution as I will be able to do as an oral surgeon, by receiving some of the best training in the world, in your program.
Thriving on diversity and multiculturalism, I especially look forward to treating increasingly diverse patient populations in decades to come, as well as an increasingly broad range of oral diseases especially as related to head and neck conditions. I thank you for considering my application.