As discussed in a blog post earlier this week, 2020 grads faced challenges obtaining their dental licensure until ASDA stepped in to assist with this effort. Elizabeth Stapleton, a 2020 graduate in Virginia, shared, “The original plan for my licensure included a manikin exam with ADEX for prosthodontics and endodontics, and a live-patient exam for restorative and periodontics.”
In March 2020, many dental schools shut classroom and clinic doors. A deadly virus was circulating the globe, known as SARS-CoV-2, or more commonly referred to as COVID-19. With many clinics and testing centers closed, students were prevented from taking licensing exams. Additional barriers stood in the way of students in states that required a live-patient exam, or a live-patient component of the exam, that could not be fulfilled under a state of emergency.
This time of the year usually signifies great celebration for graduating dental students across the country. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, graduation ceremonies look a lot different this year with virtual walks across the stage and celebrations at home in quarantine. How graduates will become licensed is different as well, and non-patient-based alternatives are now coming to the forefront.
Congratulations on the final stretch of your dental education. Although different from what you expected, your accomplishment is no less amazing.
With dental schools closed across the country, many seniors are navigating what the next steps in their dental career look like. Sandya Athigaman is a fourth-year dental student from Carlsbad, New Mexico, attending Texas A&M. After graduation, she plans to practice as a general dentist, serving in Texas. Here, Athigaman talks about the experience at her school and her tips for staying optimistic during these uncertain times.
My four years of dental school flew by. When I was trying to survive dental school, it seemed long and arduous — unending. However, when I stood on the stage to receive my doctoral hooding earlier this year, I couldn’t believe how fast those years came and went. It seemed like just yesterday I started my dental school journey and looking back on it now as a prosthodontics resident, I realize there are a few things I learned throughout the process.
Update your ADA Find-a-Dentist profile so potential new patients can find you wherever you land. Digitize your records for credentialing and learn about your student loan refinancing options to get a step up on paying off your debt.