Personal Narrative: a Career as a Dentist
My story begins with being taught how to ride a bike. With great fear inside, I initially couldn’t do it until my father said, “Enough teaching, you will never be able to ride a bike!” At this exact moment, I learnt how to overcome my fears. I practiced cycling relentlessly, despite numerous falls. However, each time I stood up stronger than before and finally achieved my goal of riding a bike perfectly. This experience taught me the value of persistence in pursuing my dreams.
As a child, I was raised in an environment that valued science and research. My mother, a professor at a medical school, devoted her life to researching stem cells and nanotechnology. This scientific atmosphere greatly influenced me, helping me appreciate the power of research and teaching for future generations.
Additionally, I’ve travelled to various foreign countries, including Bangkok, Austria, Spain, and Turkey. This exposure to diverse cultures taught me intercultural adaptation, as I quickly adjusted to new customs and ways of life. It also made me more self-reliant. I also joined the International Association of Dental Students (IADS). First, I interacted with students from different cultures in the Training for Trainers program (TNT). This experience promoted my team-building skills and conflict management. Later, as an IADS certified trainer, I organized a short motivational course. Mentoring students boosted my self-confidence. As a child, I attended conversation courses at the British Council, my first exposure to diverse cultures. I became friends with a Korean who, surprisingly, wanted to learn Arabic and belly dance. These courses transformed me from a shy person into a confident individual who enjoys giving presentations. Furthermore, I participated in numerous volunteering activities. One notable effort was with the International Hepatitis Club (IHEPC), where I joined medical convoys to impoverished regions to raise awareness about Hepatitis C prevention. Communicating with uneducated citizens required delivering messages in the simplest and most respectful manner. As community service was a pillar of my university, MIU, I also volunteered in diagnosing dental diseases and initiated public awareness campaigns in rural schools.
Marked by a commitment to excellence and dedication, I graduated from dentistry as one of the highest achievers among my peers. A positive work ethic is critical to me, and I uphold it with my colleagues, faculty members, and patients. I am imbued with a strong sense of responsibility towards every task I undertake. The key to sustained success is consistency, a trait that helped me achieve my goals. I’ve learned not to simply go with the flow, as I believe uniqueness comes from working when others might not. Immediately after being accepted into dental school, I joined a small clinic as a dental assistant to deepen my knowledge about the field and to better accommodate patients.
What Fulbright offers is a major achievement that takes my career to the next level! Dental materials are the field of my passion. By specializing in a U.S. master’s program, I will have the chance to take part in a research-based learning course within an advanced laboratory setting. By conducting research, I can develop new dental materials like Nanoscience-inspired materials, which are an upcoming invention that prevents dental caries. On top of that, having the privilege of becoming an Egyptian ambassador to the United States is a great honor. Moreover, the “multiplier effect” of my acquired training on other Egyptians is quite crucial. Thus, with this opportunity, I will be able to fulfill my teaching career in which many students will benefit from my practical-based knowledge.
To fulfill my goals, I have been working in an internationally certified dental center for four years, which has given me a sense of belonging to my second family: my dental team. Being mentored by an outstanding clinician in this clinic has paved the way towards my career. Most importantly, the clinic has a laboratory where I gained experience with digital technologies in dental materials. I became fond of the wide variety of dental materials and understood how the proper knowledge of their characteristics influences clinical outcomes.
To sum up, Fulbright is a life-changing experience which will have a profound impact on my professional and personal endeavors. However, I believe I am an ideal candidate for this scholarship due to my commitment to excellence and persistent learning until I pursue my goals.