When people hear that I go to NYU College of Dentistry, they think that I’m studying to be a dentist. However, NYUCD has an undergraduate program for dental hygiene. Teeth have always fasicinated me from a young age, I knew that I wanted to be in the field of dentistry. Why not get an early start and go into dental hygiene?
I'm going to be a rising junior and looking back, my college experience is very unique. My transition from high school into college was a difficult one. I didn't have the college experience of living in a dorm. I was commuting to NYC from New Jersey. Getting use to commuting and college was very hard for me. When I started classes, I was expecting to be with people that were my age and that were fresh out of high school. That wasn't the case, I was in class with people as old as 40 and maybe older. In my class, there were at least four of us that were fresh out of high school. It felt pretty intimidating. I felt very isolated, I did not have a lot of friends my freshman year. Majority of the people in the program were in the two-year associate's program while I was in the four-year bachelor's program. The two programs have the same amount of classes but the bachelor's program is more spaced out while the associate's program is more compact.
During my freshman year, I really did not take any dental hygiene related classes. It was just general ed classes like english or chemistry. As much as I had a fascination for dentistry, my freshman year was definitely crushing my dream. By second semester, I wanted to transfer out of NYU because I hated it but my mom talked me out of it. I decided to give it another year. My sophomore year came, I was actually taking dental hygiene related classes. One of the classes I took was pre-clinic. So you learn how to use all the various dental instruments and how to work with patients. Here's the catch, you practice on your classmates and vise versa. You are also tested on these various skills in order to go onto clinic and actually treat real-life patients.
As much as my first semester of sophomore year stressed me out, I rediscovered why I love the field of dentistry. I was pretty happy, I was making friends and felt like I belonged in my program. It was nice to actually have friends in the program because we were stressing about the same things and supported each other when times were rough. Luckily, I passed pre-clinic and the rest of my dental hygiene classes that I was able to advance into clinic and the second level of the dental hygiene course. My second semester of my sophomore year was rough yet interesting. Having that hands-on experience of working with patients in clinic was actually amazing. My sister was actually my very first patient. Don't worry, she came out of that appointment alive and so did all the other patients I treated this semester. So if you need a cleaning, hit me up!
The semester came and ended so quick and I passed all my classes! *Thank God* They say next semester is going to very hard. So keep me in your prayers that I pass. I feel very optimistic about my future in dental hygiene school. My college experience is way different than I expected but I would not trade it for the world.