We have all heard the adage that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” This saying refers to the idea that a large amount of information can be communicated through a single image. This concept is one of the reasons why I believe that PowerPoint presentations are such a popular teaching tool. Well, if a picture is worth a thousand words, then I believe a video is worth a thousand pictures—and at 30 frames per second (which is a standard frame rate in television and digital cinema), a 30 second video literally can be. The power of a video cannot be overstated.
One of the pillars, at all levels of organized dentistry, is advocacy. As members of the American Student Dental Association, advocacy is not something to be viewed as an entity that is merely provided to us. Advocacy is a personal task that should be actively engaged in so that we can serve as a voice to our colleagues, law-makers and the general population.
For today’s dental student, the utilization of social media is at times used to vent about a rigorous week at school, post pictures of your latest sim clinic work-of-art, or even share that infamous “stab lab” photo op. The ‘likes’ and comments these posts generate can be astronomical and are comprised of other dental students, family members and friends. It is easily apparent that through our postings we have the ability to reach a variety of different individuals.
Every chapter struggles to some degree in spreading the word about an event. Reaching predental students can be especially challenging since they don’t usually have a direct connection to your school or ASDA chapter. Here at Colorado ASDA, we are no different. Despite our recent outreach to the predental clubs in the area, we were still only reaching a fraction of the potential students with our e-mail advertisements. With the first week of our newly organized Summer Pre-Dental Academy quickly approaching, this was not an issue that we could afford to overlook. So we decided to do something about it.
Last summer, I read an article on Forbes.com titled “20 Things 20-Year-Olds Don’t Get.” While the title may make you bristle, it’s a good read with some great advice. Here’s one point that stood out and reminded me of my work with dental students: “Your reputation is priceless, don’t damage it – over time, your reputation is the most valuable currency you have in business. It’s the invisible key that either opens or closes doors of professional opportunity. Especially in an age where everything is forever recorded and accessible, your reputation has to be guarded like the most sacred treasure. It’s the one item that, once lost, you can never get back.”