Since I started dental school, I have intended to pursue Pediatric Dentistry, and this ambition has been increasingly confirmed as my training and career have progressed. Pursuing pediatric dentistry, I have sought as much exposure to the specialty as possible, carefully observing the techniques applied and characteristics displayed by professionals. Pediatric Dentistry calls for unique features and high levels of specialist skill and knowledge: endless patience, profound empathy, a practiced ability to inspire trust and confidence, and, most importantly, a genuine and deep affection for children. I would not be making this application if I were not convinced I possess these characteristics.
I have been involved in child-related volunteer activities since 2007. Since 2014, this has provided children with dental and oral health education, including pro-bono treatment for underserved children. I began working with children as a volunteer in high school, helping to organize and manage Special Olympics events, and have continued to work with children over the years, collaborating with various projects focusing on young people and oral health care, most recently HeadStart. My professional focus is on children with scarce resources. I was raised to believe that charitable endeavor is an obligation rather than a choice, and I could not be happier to help children who might otherwise have gone untreated or suffered from further delays in treatment. My focus on children has helped me better appreciate the critical importance of early education in adopting effective dental and oral hygiene regimes.
The first time I applied for a residency in Pediatric Dentistry, I was not selected; I was still in dental school. So, I applied to and completed an AEGD residency. The clinical experience of my AEGD Residency, complete with lectures and a variety of additional training courses, helped me become increasingly more proficient in Endodontics, Periodontics, Prosthodontics, practice management, and evidence-based dentistry, generally speaking, in addition to Pediatric Dentistry. I also have a long history – even before entering dental school - of shadowing dentists and assisting them.
After completing my AEGD Residency, I worked in private practice to supplement my public health experience gained during my residency, applying what I have learned and providing comprehensive treatment to patients from very different demographics. It was reconfirmed during this experience that my true passion is to work with children full-time. Unfortunately, I reapplied to Pediatric Dental residencies and again failed to be selected. That was a difficult day, but the glass is always half full, never half empty, for me. However, I was most grateful to be allowed to keep my dream alive because I was selected for an internship position in Pediatric Dentistry, which I have enjoyed more than I could have imagined. My central hope my third time around lies in the extensive experience that I am now acquiring in the provision of dental treatment to children in a variety of settings, including extensive exposure to and practice of behavioral control modalities such as the operating room under general anesthesia, using IV sedation, oral sedation, and in the regular clinic with the possibility of doing nitrous. I have also broadened my horizons and contribution as a volunteer, serving with HeadStart, providing what is for many children their only chance for oral health care.
I cannot wait to get to work each day in my current position and I fall asleep at night thinking about it. Nothing brings me greater joy than Pediatric Dentistry and the marvelous opportunities afforded. Since I am proficient in most aspects of child dental care, I have more hope than ever. I have done many stainless-steel crowns, strip crowns, composite and amalgam fillings, extractions, space maintenance, and tooth replacement. I have provided these services to numerous children, including many severely affected and medically compromised.
After completing your program and gaining additional experience on the cutting-edge, I hope to open my clinic as a Pediatric Dentist with a heavy focus on underserved children.
I thank you for considering my application.
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