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An accomplished and experienced dentist from Brazil, I have now made my home in the United States primarily because my husband, also Brazilian, practices medicine here. After completing dental school in my home country, I spent 2.5 years working in a private practice that afforded me the opportunity to treat a great diversity of patients and cases. My last 2.5 years in Brazil before immigrating to America were spent in the arena of public health, serving in numerous public dental clinics that assisted underserved communities.
I currently live in Tucson, AZ where my husband is almost done with a five-year general surgery residency. We are moving to Houston, Texas in July, 2016, because he wants to advance his career and has been selected by the XXXX College of Medicine for a two-year, vascular surgery fellowship. The University of XXXX Health Science Center in XXXX is the only DDS program in Texas for International Dentists, and, therefore, as close to Houston as possible. As soon as I start your program in San Antonio, I will already be utilizing the best professional help that I can find to care for my first baby, XXXX, who was born in January this year. In this way, I will be able to give my all to your distinguished program as it is my intention to excel. On his time off, my husband has promised to fly in from Houston and baby sit.
XXXX is very well known for providing an array of outreach programs and research experience to students. This serves to confirm my conviction further that I am the best fit for our program. This is particularly true because I noticed that several faculty members are doing enormously important work in the area of Endodontics where my own special passion lies.
Of central importance to my contribution to professional discussions and collaboration at XXXX is my enthusiasm for learning as much as possible concerning the development of new therapies for oral cancer. In this way, I will be able to put my background in cancer biology research in melanoma and the restoration of salivary gland function to work on behalf of a most noble cause in which I plan to continue to develop special expertise.
I have been working here in Tucson at XXXX Community Health Center as a volunteer dental assistant. The entire staff is bilingual English/Spanish and this has helped me to continue to make rapid progress. I am making a special effort at Spanish because this is so frequently the language of the underserved where I now live here in America and I want very much to be capable of treating them in their mother tongue.
Fully dedicated to lifelong learning, after earning my DDS Degree at UXXX I plan to immediately begin specializing in the area of Endodontics and earn a Master’s Degree in this area. I am also experienced in research as part of my clinical background in Brazil and here in the USA I have been serving as a Research Assistant in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Arizona under the tutelage of Dr. XXXX, PhD. for the past two years. I have continued to learn a great deal in this position about everything ranging from cancer therapy side effects to animal experimentation.
Putting a priority on volunteer work was inspired early on by mother who has continued since her retirement to work as a volunteer in the area of HIV/AIDS. Coming from a family of low-income wage earners, and parents that divorced, my academic success came only through a sense of inner strength that always pulled me together and taught me how to look beyond myself to a life of service to the least fortunate. My godmother, a dental hygienist, also inspired me to serve my community as a dentist, improving the quality of life of her patients. I shadowed her on numerous occasions while I was in high school and in college. When I graduated from one of Brazil’s most prestigious dental schools were I mastered a wide range of dental procedures and amassed impressive research experience, I became the first member of my family to not only complete but even attend college.
Being dedicated almost exclusively to handicrafts during my school breaks throughout middle and high school also helped propel me forward to a career in dentistry. I can still recall the excitement of spending most of my afternoons doing arts and crafts in my grandmother’s house. As a single mother of three daughters, my mother needed to work full time in the public health sector to support our family and could not afford childcare. My grandmother was also a great inspiration not only as a master sewer and crafter, but also as a very brave survivor of nasopharyngeal cancer. Through sewing, crocheting and embroidery, I gained the steady precision and control needed for detailed manual work along with a continuous thirst for self-improvement and a sense of satisfaction for every crafted piece that I completed.
For the past month, I have shadowed a dentist in Tucson, Arizona, in order to acquire a more comprehensive knowledge of the dental environment here in the USA and I will continue to engage on a daily basis with dentistry until I begin your program.