As a wife, mother, and dentist from India, I have been working very hard to prepare myself to get admitted to a DDS Program since arriving in the USA a little more than a year ago. I know the fierce competition for Advanced Standing Admission for international dentists. I hope to be selected primarily because I have an excellent academic track record and work experience in clinical practice, research, teaching, and volunteering in dentistry. I also have research experience in oral cancer. My country has the highest rates of oral cancer in the world. We continue to have a majority of our population immersed in poverty with limited access to oral health care. We are projected to pass China as the most populous nation within only a few years.
Now 32 years old, I have been in America for one-and-a-half years. In addition to family responsibilities and getting settled in, I have also worked very hard to prepare myself to get admitted to your program. After going through the pregnancy and birth of my baby, I started shadowing a local dentist near Boston, and my shadowing experiences here in America have left me with a deep and abiding passion for reconstituting my profession here in the USA. I am especially pleased to find so much focus here in America on the prevention of oral disease and treatment.
In addition to my family, I live almost entirely for helping people to achieve and maintain adequate levels of oral health. I have been raised my entire life to believe with all of my heart that what is most important is one’s contribution to the general welfare of our society, especially our service to the underserved, the poor, weak, sick, vulnerable, and those who cannot afford dental treatment. I hope to reserve a part of my energy for dedication to research throughout my career, and it would be a special honor for me to teach at some point, perhaps back in India, when my child is grown, if not sooner.
I have always excelled as a student, which has helped me keep my sights high. I received the Vice Chancellors' Award for academic excellence in dental school based on my academic track record. I am a very hard worker who always does my best with any task.
Being raised in a small village in rural India, I have experienced many hardships yet continued to move forward and triumph. My father is a farmer, and my mother is a homemaker with little formal education. Observing how my parent’s opportunities were limited by their lack of education, I have been inspired to pursue the highest level of education possible since childhood. But this was a challenge since I come from a culture where women's education outside the home is rarely encouraged. I was one of only a handful of girls in my village who had been fortunate to advance to higher education. I am the first in my family to receive formal education and the first and only dentist in my village.
My love affair with dentistry started when I was in high school. One day my mother had a severe toothache. I had to rush with her to a dental clinic in a nearby town as there was not even a single dental clinic in my village. After waiting for about an hour in a long queue, she received treatment, and her pain was finally relieved. After this incident, my respect for dentists and dentistry steadily increased, and I realized the immense need for dental education and additional clinics in rural areas of India. Considering my interest in science, which was thankfully encouraged by my science teacher, my artistic skill, and my motivation to serve my community, I decided to pursue dentistry as a career.
I have long cultivated exceptional clinical skills as a quick learner with artistic hands. In the clinic, I feel most satisfied and experience the purest form of joy, caring for others and helping them, truly giving my all to my patients. I excel at oral care because of my lengthy involvement with arts and crafts since childhood, helping me cultivate great attention to detail, be patient, and develop the highest level of manual dexterity possible, mainly working in small spaces. I received many awards in college and regional level competitions in Rangoli - a traditional art in which patterns are created on the floor with colored sand meticulously using hand /finger pinch requiring great precision, concentration, and a most nimble dexterity.
Volunteer work has also been central among my top priorities, actively participating in dental education and oral screening camps for school children. I have also worked with numerous blood drives. Before leaving India, I completed 1.5 years of clinical experience as a dentist in a bustling clinic, where I generally worked 60-80 hrs a week; this gave me the privilege of helping hundreds of some of the most humble and needy people in my country. I also served for two years as a lecturer in a dental school, where I worked to transmit my knowledge to new undergraduate students. I shared my theoretical knowledge and my clinical experience with the students.
I thank you for considering my application to your distinguished program. I hope for positive feedback from your side and assure you that if given a chance to study at your esteemed university, I won’t leave any stone unturned to achieve academic excellence.
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