• Crystal Lee

Finally Decided Where

I have been MIA for awhile due to taking couple of prerequisite courses for dental school at a community college. But during those 3 months of studying and working (woohoo to student loans and interest to pay back), I finally decided which school to attend!

It has been one crazy roller coster ride to decide which school I will feel most comfortable.

After taking off most of the out-of-state schools from my options due to high tuition and long distance from home, it came down to NYU and Rutgers.

Since I lived in Jersey my whole life, NYU and the city life that came with it attracted me more initially. I mean, who would say no to the opportunity to live in NYC?

NYU is a great school with large class size and a large pool of patients.

I loved every minute I spent visiting the campus and meeting the professors.

Most of the faculties I got to talk to resembled so much of my professors from Emory.

They really cared about the students, and the clinic seemed to be always busy with various interesting cases.

(FYI, if you ever go to NYU for an interview, always remember that they offer free lunch afterwards. You can get anything you want from their cafeteria and they have steak AND salmon!)

However, at the end, I chose Rutgers Dental School.

Many friends and family members wondered why since I set my heart on NYU for awhile.

Well, I went and talked with several dentists in my community, and they opened my eyes; I had been forgetting to think about myself when choosing which school I should go to.

  1. I definitely work better in a small class size setting.

  2. I value time spent in community service/outreach more than in lab work.

  3. I want to be able to come home and be with my family as much as I can.

  4. I have an interest in learning about providing medical services to low income community.

After writing down what I want first before concerning about the location, name value, or programs that the schools emphasize, the answer became so clear.

Rutgers School of Dental Medicine (RSDM) located in Newark, NJ, focuses highly on community service. Although the campus itself is safe, it is located in the one of the most low income community in New Jersey.

Therefore, the school has been a great resource for those who can’t afford to visit private dental offices for their dental injuries.

Also, it only takes 20 minutes to get back home, which means I can get home cooked meals on weekends. (saving bucks on food cost!)

Thinking about what type of a student I am and what I like or dislike helped me to make a decision once and for all.

I don’t think which dental school we end up going to actually matters in terms of affecting our ability as dentists. I believe every school is able to offer the best education for its students. The most important part in making this type of decision is really knowing who we are as individuals.

I was able to figure that out in a given time and I can’t wait to start my journey in the upcoming August.

Here we go class of 2022!

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