Kishan Patel

First Impression - Predental

Hometown: Maple Grove, Minnesota

Chapter: University of Minnesota

Graduation Year: 2021

Position Held At Chapter: Treasurer & Webmaster


Why do you want to be a dentist?
I was determined to pursue dentistry after I attended a six-week summer camp (SHPEP) at the University of Nebraska: School of Dentistry. During this camp, we were placed in classes with other pre-health students to assist with prerequisite courses. Pre-dental students took classes at the School of Dentistry where we were exposed to dental instruments and procedures. We performed oral screening exams, probing, cavity & crown preparations and making preliminary impressions. This program exposed me to many aspects of the dental field and motivated me to pursue dentistry. I have also done about 100 hours of shadowing and dental assisting respectively. Being involved in the dental field and meeting other dentists has sparked my interest further into the field of dentistry.

I have noticed that business skills are crucial in private practice dentistry. I have directly assisted my parents in running their small business. I conduct night audits, generate financial reports and create spreadsheets to track expenses. This skill set will be beneficial for me as a dentist in the future.

What are you most nervous about for dental school?
I am most nervous about the heavy academic workload during our first year. I plan to tackle this challenge by staying organized and maintaining a good school-life balance. On the other hand, I am most excited about meeting other dental students, and working with advanced dental technologies. Wish me best of luck!

Why do you think you’ll make a good dentist?
I will make a great dentist because I am manually dexterous. I play the table, which is a drum-like instrument that requires the use of all ten fingers. I have been playing this instrument for more than four years and plan to continue. The tabla develops finger strength and manual dexterity. I have also completed many swine phrenic nerve dissections using the blunt dissection technique, which helps with manual dexterity. In addition, I have a passion to help underserved communities. For the past few years, I volunteered as a dental assistant at a local free clinic and have enjoyed assisting during extractions. At the clinic, I am also exposed to office management, sterilization, patient-provider relationships and cleaning post-op rooms. While there, I also volunteer as an outreach specialist where I teach young kids about brushing habits. Being part of a clinic operation has given me the best idea of what the field of dentistry entails.

Share one thing on your bucket list:
Someday, I wish to go on an African safari to see wildlife and picturesque landscapes