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Endodontics, Black Muslim, South Central Los Angeles

November 12, 2017

I hope to be selected for your distinguished, advanced training program in Endodontics at XXXX University at least in part out of considerations for diversity, since I am a black dentist born and raised in South Central Los Angeles. I also hope to be chosen, however, on the basis of my long term goal in dentistry, starting a dental clinic for the underserved members of that community.  I look forward, in particular, to discussions of some of the special issues in Endodontics - and dentistry generally speaking - that tend to arise in an inner-city context. My mother raised six children alone while battling the unforgiving constraints of rheumatoid arthritis. I saw little of my father as a child since he gave his life to being a Black Muslim until he was murdered by the LAPD when I was an adolescent. My mother and her older sister had been active members of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Black Panther Party of Self Defense in the late 60's early 70's. By the time that I arrived, however, in the wake of my older brother, she had lost interest in politics and struggled each day to put food on the table.

The combination of my father’s untimely death and watching my mother’s slow deterioration inspired me to reach out beyond my own circumstances and I became the first male in my family to earn a college degree. Since graduating from dental school, I have successfully completed two hospital-based, general practice residencies and currently work as a general practitioner. Throughout my training, my interest in Endodontics has matured into a great passion and I have excelled clinically in the area of third molar extractions (simple and surgical), non-surgical molar endodontics, anterior retreats, draining fascial space infections, and the management of minor odontogenic trauma. Currently, I am the only dentist at my clinic that does molar Endodontics. I am very excited about current studies on regenerative Endodontics and apical microsurgeries. I have taken numerous continuing education courses, attended AAE conferences and I am a member of the American Dental Association and American Association of Endodontists. I have focused my training in the area of root canal therapy and look forward to many decades to come on the cutting edge of Endodontics, enabling patients to maintain their natural dentition.

My mother took me to church growing up and I continue to attend church as it fortifies me in every way, perhaps especially in my service to others as a dentist. As a dental student at Howard University I was actively engaged with Campus Ministries. I currently attend The Father's House in Rochester, NY, a nondenominational, multi-cultural, multi-generational church. We like to think of ourselves as placed on this earth to serve God, and I understand that my service to him is through dentistry. Some of my greatest volunteering experiences so far have been with a non-profit organization called Project Hospitality where I help almost entirely homeless people, substance abusers, and people with HIV/AIDS. I mentor young boys with Big Brothers of America and hang dry wall with Habitat for Humanity.

I look forward to a very high energy environment in your Endodontics program and I am ready to hit the ground running; especially as a result of my experience as a GPR resident at Rochester General Hospital, where I very much enjoyed the unpredictability of an intense emergency rotation with a very heavy call schedule. I found it exciting to enter the exam room not knowing exactly what to expect. Collecting patient medical histories, evaluating symptoms, and determining the proper diagnosis has always been a gratifying challenge, the continuum of intellectual stimulation upon which I thrive. 

I thank you for considering my application.

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