Dental Assistant, San Antonio - San PedroMiranda
“I came here a year after high school. I was just working. I wanted to start my career and establish myself.
My first day of school was good. Everybody was greeting us. They have this big cheer in here. You stand in the hallway and they do these crazy hands and go, ‘Ahhhh!’ as you walk under them. It’s fun. I was excited to start.
I love the teachers here. They have been really good. The clinic teachers were good, too. The doctors were really helpful, and the students were awesome. I made really good friends.
The toughest thing I’ve done is make temporary crowns. You have to hand-sculpt it and shape it. It’s pretty cool. You cement it on a person’s tooth. You use an impression, and then it becomes a kind of paste, and it molds and hardens. I never thought I’d be doing that. I didn’t know we could. I also was surprised to learn about lingual braces. They go inside the mouth, behind the teeth. I never thought I would be putting on braces. I never thought about it when I was younger, but now I look at everyone’s teeth.
“I never thought about it when I was younger, but now I look at everyone’s teeth.”
I was externing at an oral surgeon’s office, and I really wanted to work in oral surgery but they were already full. So I was looking for about a week. I had two interviews and then one hired me. I am now working at a general dentistry office, but the dream is to work at an oral surgeon’s office.
My boyfriend is a big supporter. He’s my right hand. We live together, and he’s been with me through all of these ups and downs. My mom is pretty excited, too. She’s happy because she knows I am going to do good, do better for myself than she had. I am the only one that graduated. My brother didn’t finish high school. So this is new for her. She cried when I graduated high school. My brother is happy, too. He’s like, ‘Oh, you’re going to go out there and make money!’
I am proud of my attendance. I tried really hard to not miss a day because it’s important. It’s a fast program and if you miss it, you’re going to miss out on a lot of things. I was also asked to give the valedictorian speech. That’s nerve-wracking. I am starting it now. It will be about family, obstacles and inspiring the other graduates. I don’t know what I am going to say, yet.
For new students, I’d say don’t be nervous. Just get in there. You know if you want to be here for a reason. Be yourself. Be here. Learn as much as you can.”