Coming to HSDM as a first year is one of the most unique experiences. Although I never took the MCAT nor applied to medical schools, I am now practically a first year medical student at Harvard Medical School! I’m currently delving into the ins and outs of medical policy such as Medicaid and Medicare and ethics in my Essentials of the Profession course. And I find it so captivating. However, I have yet to pick up my first explorer or even do anything with my hands. Therefore, when I first heard of NLC, I immediately jumped on the opportunity, eager to open the doors to converse with other dental students and hear from successful clinicians and business-owners.
Coming to NLC Chicago, I was mesmerized by all the plethora of talks we were offered. Essentially, we had 5 talks a day to choose from with topics ranging from dental policy to successful business strategies to ways to maintain work-life balance! From each talk, there was always something new to take away and learn. Listening to all these successful professionals share their experience and input into the profession was honestly my highlight of first semester. I left Chicago with a re-energized passion for the field. Here are some of my biggest takeaways.
3 Biggest Takeaways:
- Studying effectively isn’t about how much time you put into it. It’s about the quality: it includes engaging 100% entirely, making imaginative connections among the concepts, and using spaced repetition! The memory palace technique is also a nice way to store information in an ordered manner. As a D1 taking primarily didactic courses, this advice was immensely useful!
- Although teledentistry in orthodontics can be a controversial topic (such as with SmileDirectClub clear retainers), teledentistry can be a useful strategy to combat access to care issues. Virtual dental visits are being currently trialled in California. These visits reach a lot more people, emphasize prevention, and lower costs!
- Sometimes, dentists feel a sense of guilt about wanting to make money, but I learned that your growth can help you pursue impactful campaigns and projects that reach more people. For instance, the speaker dentist spoke about how she used her profit to fund a successful project to build houses in Kenya. Intent matters a a lot.