DDS Yemeni Applicant, Volunteer Work in Yemen, Middle East

My native land, where I was born, Yemen, is one of the poorest and most politically turbulent countries in the world. This is illustrated, most recently, by the country making President Trump’s list of 7 no-fly nations. Because of an acute lack of resources perpetuated by political unrest and destruction, oral health resources are extremely underdeveloped. Thus, it was the highlight of my life so far when a few months ago, in December of 2016, I was able to accompany a dental mission to Yemen, serving as a translator and assisting with extractions and fillings. I hope to contribute to the diversity of your general residency program as someone with fresh experience from the front lines of one of the most difficult dental missionary assignments in the world. Obviously, I could not be more pleased that dentistry is a global profession characterized by a great deal of human solidarity.

Earning my BS in Biology in May of 2013 and devoted to research since early on, I published a research paper in a scientific journal while still an undergraduate student and worked as a Dental Assistant for an Endodontist for 5 months in the beginning of 2014. I was also paid to do academic research as an undergraduate student and also during the summer of 2016. Currently working towards the completion of my DDS Degree at Meharry Medical College School of Dentistry, I am now very keenly looking forward to giving my all to a general practice residency program.

Early on in 2016, I started doing research at XXXX Medical College into tissue and saliva as sentinels of exposure to toxicants. In the summer of 2016, I was employed as a professional researcher at the University of XXXX, working on the role of TLR2-/TLR4- genes to bone resorption in mice. I was also accepted after my first year of dental school into the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as a Public Health Dentistry Scholar. I am especially passionate about doing research pertaining to preventative dental interventions that can prevent oral diseases. I am particularly proud of my role as IT tech for our dental school class, always making sure that our equipment is working properly. When it doesn’t, they call me and each time this happens I feel a special joy. I have also served as an Academic Vice President for our class and for the past 3 years I have been President of out Student Professional Ethics Association.

This past December, providing free dental care in the city of Aden in my native Yemen, my home, I came to more fully realize the gravity of the responsibility that I feel to help these people. The UN has recently issued a hunger crisis for the increasing number of children dying from hunger in Yemen and conditions are rapidly deteriorating. I am fortunate to be here in America and I would like to be able to one day open up my own free dental clinic in Aden. I also look forward to a professional lifetime of research into issues in preventative oral health interventions for many oral diseases. If accepted into your general practice residency program, I hope to distinguish myself in particular in assisting with medically compromised patients.

I am part of the Yemeni American Leadership Association. We try to serve as positive role models for young people in America’s Yemeni community. While in dental school, I have also volunteered to help with oral health screenings and education, with Head Start, going into different elementary schools, at the annual health expo, and at the Elam Mental Health Clinic. I have also helped out with RAM (Remote Medical Area) weekend events in different locations with as many as 1000 patients seen and treated at each event: mostly extractions, fillings and cleanings. Meharry is heavily focused on helping underserved communities so we have many opportunities to help.

I will be very pleased to be the first member of my family to earn a graduate degree. I attribute my success mostly to a lot of dedication and hard work. 10 years from now, I plan to be shuttling back and forth between my two dental practices, one in America and the other in Yemen. In both countries, I hope to have a special focus on the underserved, especially in the land of my birth where the underserved are the rule rather than the exception.

I thank you for considering my application.

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Skype: DrRobertEdinger

Middle Easterner in Canada, Dental Training in Hungary, DDS International Application

altBecause of excellent parental training, I understood the importance of dental maintenance from an early age and was determined to look after my teeth and maintain a good smile.  I had no fear of my dentist who was a sympathetic, friendly and skilled man and I was fascinated by the equipment in his office. At the age of fourteen, my school gave pupils the opportunity to ‘shadow’ a professional to help us choose a career. I chose dentistry without hesitation and shadowed a dentist who was as skilled and kindly as my own.  I soon became aware that his skills could be applied to turn groans of pain into smiles of relief and I greatly enjoyed seeing such transformations. I also became aware that his skills could actually be life-changing in that he could transform appearances and so give confidence and life chances that might not otherwise be available to patients. My mind was made up and I have never regretted my choice.

I obtained a B.Sc. from the University of Western Ontario in 2010 and then made applications for dental studies at Canadian universities whilst, at the same time, worrying about the funding of my studies because of family problems. At this time, I met a dentist who had been trained in Hungary. He told me that studying in Hungary provided some distinct advantages. The training is excellent but the cost is much lower than in Canada and, most importantly, the neglect by much of the, especially rural, population to dental and oral health provided very early exposure to a broad range of conditions and disease and that this would assist me throughout my career. I took his advice and gained a place at the prestigious University of Debrecen Dental Faculty which was recognized as a ‘Center of Excellence’ for dental training by the Hungarian government in 1996. The program was five years in length involving extensive practical training and culminating in the submission of a thesis. I completed my studies and was awarded my degree of DMD this year.

My special interest is in oral surgery and especially implantology in which I hope, eventually, to specialize. I am particularly drawn to this specialty because each case is different providing various challenges and possible solutions. I enjoy exercising the necessary creativity in forming treatment plans for complex cases. I am currently ‘shadowing’, on a part time basis, a specialist and am very excited by what I have seen of the dramatic and continuing advances in techniques and materials in this specialty. I am aware that dentistry generally, and oral surgery particularly, calls for characteristics such as confidence and empathy, and the ability to inspire confidence and cooperation in one’s patients. I greatly enjoy patient contact and in earning their trust and am blessed with a sense of humor. I am also aware that cross-disciplinary cooperation and teamwork are vital in maximizing effectiveness in the profession for optimizing outcomes.

After returning to Canada, I was invited to assist in research at the University of Toronto by a research Ph.D. professor that I met at a dental seminar when I discussed my interests with him. The research relates to regeneration of the alveolar bone and related immunology. This area of work is fascinating and is an excellent supplement to my dental education and in my special area of interest. My decision to study in Hungary provided advantages other than purely professional ones. The city of Debrecen is very beautiful and is in a beautiful part of the world. I was exposed to a new and very interesting culture and also had the opportunity to travel to other countries in Europe and the Middle East. The experience certainly broadened my mind and provided insights that I would, otherwise, have lacked.

I have happily studied, worked and socialized with people of many ethnic and social backgrounds. I enjoy learning about new cultures and sharing knowledge of my own, Arabic, culture. I am fluent in English, Arabic and Hungarian. I have been involved in assisting refugees to adapt to a new culture and it is my intention to seek opportunities to join a charity providing free treatment to those living in refugee camps. I have met several people who have done so and have been inspired by their reports and hope to emulate them in giving them the benefit of my skills and knowledge.

I believe that ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’, that it is important for those working in demanding professions should be able to ‘switch off’ through recreational activity. I love all sports, especially rugby, volleyball and American football in which I take part. I also swim, jog and attend a local gym regularly.

To summarize, I have been equipped with dental training that is both excellent and comprehensive. I have proved myself to be a flexible and determined in pursuing my passion for dentistry and, I believe, that I have the natural characteristics that will enable me to become an excellent dentist and specialist. I am sure that I can ‘add value’ to the program and look forward to sharing the insights and experiences that I have gained and benefitting from those gained by my fellow students.

Pakistani-American Personal Statement Sample for International Dentist Program

A sensitive and compassionate woman, now 34, a Pakistani American, I have already completed dental school in Islamabad, Pakistan (2009) and now I hope to also complete dental school in the USA, so that I will be prepared and qualified to practice global dentistry, in the USA as well as in Pakistan. Born in the USA, I grew up flying back and forth between the USA and Pakistan and I attended school in both places. I completed my undergraduate studies at XXXX Community College NY, USA. Then, I went back to Pakistan for dental school followed by 3 years of residency and practice in Islamabad.

Following my graduation from dental school in Pakistan, I stayed for several more years because I wanted the experience of practicing dentistry in a developing nation with great challenges in oral health. I was raised in both places, New York as well as Islamabad; and I take pride in being fully multilingual - English, Urdu, Punjabi, and Hindi - and multicultural. This drives my desire to complete dental school in America as well. At some point after earning my DDS Degree in America, I hope to use all of my languages as a dentistry professional, and as a volunteer. New York is my home and there is a great need for multilingual dental professionals.

I come from a family of health care professionals and they have always been and continue to be very supportive of my career in dentistry, especially my three sisters, two physicians and one oral surgeon. When the four of us are together, typical subjects that dominate the conversation are dental community clinics, research in diagnostic and biomedical sciences, and craniofasial birth defects. I have been especially inspired by my extensive work as a resident in the Children's Hospital in Lahore, Pakistan working with children suffering from cleft lip and palate. This has me enormously excited about the prospect of continuing to pursue my research in the area of craniofasial abnormalities both as a DDS student and beyond.

I am currently serving as a volunteer researcher for the Department of Diagnostic and Biomedical Sciences at the University of XXXX. I have also been employed since January of 2017 as a Registered Dental Assistant (RDA), since I received my certification.

I love the way in which dentistry is global and professionals in the Developed World feel compelled to go on missions to the Developing World to assist with the great need that exists in poor countries like Pakistn. Thus, I look forward to having things of value to contribute to discussions in my DDS program based on my professional experiences as someone who completed dental school and practiced for three years in one of the poorest countries in the world with vast challenges in the provision of even the most basic of oral health care services. These challenges are especially great in rural areas plagued by political violence and natural disasters with much of the country regularly flooded and many thousands of people displaced for long periods of time, their homes destroyed. All of these factors have dire consequences for oral health.

My background in the Developing World and my full time immersion in the dental challenges of practice in Third World cities like Islamabad and Lahore, has also left me inspired to always do what I can as a volunteer to help the underserved, here in the USA as well as Pakistan.  While working in as a dentist in a Children's Hospital in Lahore, I was able to gain a great deal of exposure to and experience with children with cleft lip and palate. This was the only hospital of its kind in all of the Punjab province of Pakistan. People traveled for days – sometimes for many hundreds of miles - to bring an infant only a few weeks old. These poor mothers from the countryside with nothing but a crying infant on their laps struck to the very core of my heart and sense of professional duty, making it seem natural to spend such long hours on my feet. I relished the complexity involved, and struggled as best I could against long odds, since cleft lip and palate children are not even supposed to breast or bottle feed without specially designed nipples. This provided me with a great opportunity to serve these children with special needs.

In Pakistan, given the limited availability and high cost of oral health care, few children other than those with cleft lip and palate ever see a dentist. All of the children that I was able to treat in Pakistan, however, touched my heart profoundly and inspired in me the desire to continue to develop a specialization in Pediatric Dentistry, continuing my education in this area after earning the DDS Degree.

While studying at XXXX Community College, my mother developed a tooth ache and since we had no dental insurance I took her to the local community clinic that was free of charge. There, I fell in love with the advanced technology, the spirit of cooperation, the volunteers and their profound sense of community and belonging, and the profession of dentistry.

I thank you for considering my application to your distinguished DDS Program for internationally trained dentists.

Sample 1st Paragraph for International Dentist Application, Jordanian

A Jordanian woman and dentist who is now a permanent resident of the USA, I hope to be selected for and complete your distinguished program for International Dentists so that I can become licensed to practice dentistry here in America, in addition to the country where I completed dental school, Palestine, and the country where I was born and raised, Saudi Arabia. My special passion lies in the area of Pediatric Dentistry and I hope to build a lifetime specialization. Most particularly, I look forward to many decades to come of providing dental treatments to special needs children.

Sample 1st 2 Paragraphs International Dentist Application, Iraqi Dentist, Refugee from ISIS, Mosul

I hope to be selected for your distinguished DDS Program for International Dentists because I am a dentist from Iraq who has shown a great deal of dedication to dentistry under difficult circumstances.  My father was a distinguished professor and a member of the university senate in our city. I hoped to follow in his footsteps and to also become a distinguished academic in Iraq but ISIS conquered our entire province and put an end to those dreams, at least insofar as they were based in our native land. ISIS was actively hunting my father so he was lucky to escape, as was I.

My father went to another country; I chose America, dreaming of dental school, coming here first as a refugee. I am now a permanent resident and hope to resume my career here in my new home. A hard worker with great optimism and drive, I have my sights set on years of study, continuing after earning my DDS Degree in the area of Orthodontics, an area in which I have already earned a doctoral degree in Turkey. I hope to return to my country of origin someday to help put smiles on the faces of children scarred by war.

Residency Position in Orthodontics, Kuwaiti

A Kuwaiti man born and raised in my country, I went to Egypt to study dentistry and graduated in that country (2003 to 2007), this enabled me to make lasting, important professional ties with dentists not only in Egypt, but also dentists from other parts of the Middle East. This has helped me to better understand some of the complexity of the many challenges facing us in this part of the world in terms of providing adequate dental care to our peoples. I now have 10 years of experience as a full time dentist providing a wide range of dental procedures and treatments and making a thoroughgoing exploration of general dentistry, long enough to realize in what area I want to now specialize and give my all for the balance of my career: Orthodontics.

Masters Periodontology, Saudi Arabian Applicant Sample

Periodontal Prosthesis is the center of my world and I look forward to a lifetime of research and practice on the cutting-edge of this field. My country, Saudi Arabia, has only a handful of well-trained professionals in this area and I look forward to contributing to the great need that exists in this area in Saudi Arabia, once I return home after completing your program. I spent much of 2016 in an intensive English Language Program at the University of Pennsylvania so as to bring my language skill up to the excellent level needed so to excel in your Periodontology program. At the same time, I also prepared and sat for Part 1 of the NBDE.

I see the University of Pennsylvania as a world leader in the area of Periodontal Prosthesis and I could not imagine feeling more honored and highly motivated to excel in your program should I be accepted. UPenn is definitely the optimal platform for me to continue to advance my career and realize my fullest potential over the long term. Ialso very much appreciate the developed and practiced multidisciplinary focus employed by dentistry at UPenn so that I can become the the kind of periodontist that I most want to become. I hope to be one of only a few who practice periodontics and prosthodontics in Saudi Arabia. Thus, I seek a full immersion experience in implants, from surgery through the entire process of restoration. I look forward to a lifetime of participation in research into my central areas of practice: periodontics, implants, fixed prosthodontics.

Following my graduation from dental school in Saudi Arabia, I served in the Ministry of Health Hospital as a Maxillofacial Intern for 2 months, doing mostly extractions in OR under the supervision of OMF surgeons. The rest of my internship was at King Khalid University Dental School clinics, gaining practice and in-depth exposure. For years now, I have constantly attended seminars and workshops. Throughout the course of my training and professional experience in Saudi Arabia, I have often been surprised at how many people in my country do not have even a basic grasp of the essentials of oral health care, even many of those who are quite wealthy and well-educated; they remain uninformed and continue to suffer the consequences. This has helped me to develop into a dentist who is especially conscious of and concerned with the imperative nature of public health education in the area of oral health care and prevention of disease. Being selected to you Residency and Master’s Program in Periodontics at UPenn will help me enormously to realize my long-term goal of making major contributions to the advance of public oral health care as a priority in the KSA.

I could not be more devoted to the study and engaged with the practice of Periodontics. Currently practicing in our university periodontal clinic, I see patients with periodontal diseases every day, often Chronic Periodontitis with very deep pockets and bad oral hygiene. Thus, I have developed a keen sensitivity concerning the enormous work that needs to be done with respect to raising community awareness of our public oral health challenges. For some time, I have also been volunteering as much as I can to work with an oral health education team in public venues, providing free dental services, answering questions about available resources and opportunities, etc. I see a huge prevalence of periodontal disease at these camps, gingival recession and other dental abnormalities, most clearly a result of the simple lack of basic hygiene and preventive care.

At King Khalid University Dental Clinic, I observed the large numbers of people always in long lines and the huge numbers of people seeking periodontal and other surgical treatments, especially dental implants. Those patients seeking dental implants at our clinic had to first patiently wait for weeks if not months on the waiting list since we only had one periodontist in our clinic that was licensed to perform dental implants. Hence, my great passion for Periodontics – driven by the great need to which I have been a first-hand observer. This is why I have dedicated my professional life to the central cause of the advancement of Periodontics in Saudi Arabia.

Thankfully, my current, two-year position as a Teaching Assistant in the field of Periodontology at my university comes complete with a full scholarship for postgraduate study in the USA, making it comfortable for me to afford my career advancement. Most of my duties at my current post involve the supervision of dental students in periodontal course clinics. I am grateful to be gaining valuable experience in teaching and tutoring in periodontal procedures – especially scaling and root planning as well as practicing full time in this area. I also appreciate very much having the opportunity to interact with particularly outstanding professors in Periodontology such as with Dr. Nabeeh, one of my role models, who completed a residency program and earned a Master’s Degree in Periodontology in the USA. He has been inspiring and encouraging me to follow his example.


Indian Growing up in Dubai, DDS International, Special Needs Children

As a child in Dubai, I used to join my mother at a hospital for special needs children where she was a volunteer. We would talk and play with the children and I enjoyed it very much. However, even though I was very young, it struck me that the appearance of those children who suffered dental malformation could be greatly improved and saw that some had difficulty eating for the same reason but this was, presumably, not regarded as a matter of priority and little was ever done.  At age 12, I suffered a chipped maxillary incisor and thought that it was the end of the world. I will never forget the enormous relief I felt on discovering that this could be easily fixed.  These early experiences made me very aware of the importance of dental health and esthetics and they set me on a career path that I have never regretted.

I have provided dental treatment in 3 different continents; Indian, Africa and America which has encompassed underdeveloped, developing and developed countries. These experiences have opened my eyes to the great disparities in oral health between economic classes and, have fired a passion for improving education in oral hygiene and helping to bring dental services to under-served communities. It has also given me a passion to assist in the development of new techniques and materials to enable the delivery of effective and low-cost treatments as widely as possible. I am also especially interested in the prevention of oral carcinoma, which is prevalent in India. My goal is to acquire expert skills and knowledge and, ultimately, to become a researcher and teacher. In addition I hope to join or found an organization whose aim would be to provide opportunities for dental students and dentists to join ‘dental missions’ in under-served communities across the world.

My decision to study in India was initially made with the primary intention of experiencing the country about which I had heard so much and from which my parents and ancestors came. However, I discovered that studying dentistry in India provided distinct advantages. I was exposed to a much wider range of dental and oral disease than might otherwise be the case. Three months of my one year internship was spent in a Rural Health Center providing treatments and education in difficult conditions. The balance was spent in a hospital which had both a private and a general clinic. The contrasts in conditions treated and oral hygiene awareness in the two types of patients was stark and brought home the need to help poorer patients to understand the need to give a much greater priority to early treatment and the adoption of a regular and effective oral hygiene regime. This part of my career has left a deep impression on me and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to provide relief to poor patients suffering severe pain and to enable people to smile and to eat painlessly. I gained very impressive results during my training, which will be an assurance as to my academic potential within the program.

My personal goals clearly call for a high degree of cultural sensitivity. I have happily worked alongside, studied with, and treated people of many different ethnic and social backgrounds and all ages. I enjoy sharing information about my own culture and experiences, and learning from others about their own. I am very widely travelled and am fluent in English and Hindi, I can speak Tamil and Malayalam and am learning Spanish, which I very much enjoy.

Since coming to the U.S., I have had the opportunity to ‘shadow’ a highly skilled and compassionate dentist in Texas who has generously given significant time to extending my informal training here. This has provided me with insights into the dental environment in the U.S. as well as exposing me to the latest techniques and equipment. I have undertaken attendance at dental conferences and extensive reading of professional journals to keep abreast of the latest developments in such a fast changing professional environment. I am also enrolled in a preceptorship program at Boston University which will last one month and commences in March of this year and will further extend and broaden my local dental education.

I consider that a busy professional in any field benefits from having outside passions and interests. I hold a degree in Classical Indian music and have been awarded the prestigious title of ‘Sangeet Bhushan’ because of my skills. I was also an enthusiastic member of my University’s Indian contemporary dance team which I headed for a year.

To summarize: I have gained unusually broad experience which was acquired in several countries and dental environments; I have gained impressive grades in my professional education and, indeed, in all those fields of study in which I have engaged; I possess a naturally outgoing and empathetic personality. However my main recommendation is a genuine passion to provide excellent treatment to patients and to assist in the constant search for innovative and effective techniques, materials and equipment. I believe that I will be able to ‘add value’ to the program and very much look forward to doing so.