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To Serve Others through Dentistry

 

My interest in dentistry is a result of a sincere interest in the profession as well as a strong belief that my personal qualities will allow me to contribute to the well-being of others. My observations of dentists at work, my interest in thier manual skills, and my strong desire for service work have lead me to choose dentistry. My broad but science-centered academic background is health-related, which will help me succeed in a dental program.

 

Dentistry depends on communication skills, patience, and tolerance of individuals' differences which I think are my strong points. I believe I can give effective and equal care to all patients. Tutoring in Clarkson's Writing Lab taught me that the success of the conference depends on the ability of the tutor not to dominate but to encourage the writer to give information. This relationship parallels the doctor-patient relationship. I think dentistry is a joint effort between the doctor and patient. This field is appropriate for me because I would enjoy using the skills I've acquired through the Writing Lab and my coursework in Communications to explore problems with patients. Also, I would enjoy the challenge of working with the variety of patients. For instance, in addition to the students I've tutored, I've helped freshman for Clarkson's Student Orientation and in-coming biology majors as a "Big Brother"; I've actively participated with chemistry majors in the American Chemical Society; in Clarkson Theatre Club I worked with a diversity of students on the production of The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Finally, I have honestly enjoyed service work throughout my school years, for example, visiting nursing homes with the Chorus and Forensics groups.

 

Although I have been interested in dentistry since 1980, I majored in biology and left myslf open to many career options. In my naivete, I had though of dentists as purely science oriented with few interests; but from my contacts with some dental students and dentists I saw that I could become a dentist and still retain my personal interests and traits. Also, I'm attracted to the craft of dentistry. Although the patient might not have appreciated it, I found myself smiling as I observed two surgeries because I appreciated the delicate, intricate work. From Dr. Edward Smith, a practicing dentist from Ogdensburg, New York, I also learned that a good dentist must know the whole patient's history, habits, and even economics, when solving problems. I've seen not only the hands-on skills but also the necessity of a holistic approach to a patient.

 

In conjunction with my coursework this fall, I will be engaged in a research project in physiological psychology. My project evaluates stress responses on students' cardiovascular systems to indicate people at high risk of cardiovascular disease. The project involves physical measurements and psychological surveys. This research will be applicable to dentistry in understanding the stress dental patients undergo.

 

Dentistry interests me because it would enable me to make sure of my personal qualities gained through communication and a variety of interests. I'm attracted to the skill and service aspects of dental work. I've also chosen dentistry not only because of its scientific, technological, and humanistic nature, but because it allows me to utilize my broad academic background in a career.

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