Begoña Martí, Tom Hung, Jonathan Dixon, Anita Foroshani, Wan-Ting Lin and Bo-Jen Chiou: these six dentists and CEU UCH graduates were the protagonists of the international careers event, Jornadas Salidas Profesionales Internacionales, organized by the staff on the Bachelor’s Degree in Dentistry.
This event was aimed at current Dentistry undergraduates at the CEU Cardenal Herrera University, presenting them with a wide range of international career opportunities.
“I like a challenge”
Tom Hung is a CEU UCH alumnus and a member of our very first class of Dentistry graduates. At the event, he spoke about his career which started by setting up a dental clinic with a fellow student in Spain and which has now led him to work at a hospital in Taiwan.
“Dentistry in Spain is all about quality whereas in Taiwan it’s all about quantity. In Spain you can only work at a private clinic or clinics related to dental treatment, but not as a dentist in a large hospital,” he said.
Although he recognized that being your own boss has many advantages, Tom decided to work in a hospital because “it enables you to see different kinds of patients and to provide treatment which is more difficult to undertake if you work in a dental clinic.”
Bo-Jen Chiou also works in a hospital in Taiwan, but he combines his clinical duties with public engagement work as a dentistry expert on TV.
“The possibilities on graduation are endless”
Like Tom Hung, he was also a member of the first group of CEU UCH Dentistry graduates and he now works on a range of different educational and public engagement activities related to dentistry. He has even contributed to a book aimed at helping international students at CEU UCH improve their communication skills with patients.
Bo-Jen spoke about how he undertook different postgraduate programmes until he settled on oral surgery.
“We want to be good dentists and work in the profession, but we also want to enjoy life, our families and our friends. We want to be free to do everything that makes us feel good and be happy,” he said.
Lecturing in the UK
Jonathan Dixon is currently a Clinical Academic Fellow at the University of Sheffield in the UK.
A member of the second ever group of Dentistry graduates at CEU UCH, he looks back very fondly on his time at CEU UCH. During his talk at the event, he spoke about how his interest in teaching and restorative dentistry “began here in CEU’s lecture rooms, with lecturers such as Mar Jovani, Arlinda Luzi and Salvatore Sauro”.
He explained how, in the UK, there are 13 recognized specialties in dentistry and to specialize in one of these areas, students must undertake a three-year postgraduate programme, including 3000 hours of clinical and theoretical training.
He also highlighted how he must continue with a further 6 or 7 years of training, undertaking a range of postgraduate and doctoral courses, in order to obtain a lectureship at the University of Sheffield.
Begoña Martí, another member of the first group of Dentistry graduates at CEU UCH, also teaches in the UK.
During her talk, she emphasized the importance of ongoing professional training.
“Keeping your skills and knowledge up to date is a must rather than a just a good idea, as dentistry, like other medical fields, is constantly advancing and changing, due to the development of new technologies and materials”
Begoña explained how important it is for trainee dentists to speak with other professionals “for work and in order to be able to speak to patients about their diagnosis and treatment”. This learning process has helped her to become “a better dentist”, she believes.
Good dentists, better people
Anita Foroshani, a member of the second group of CEU UCH student to graduate in Dentistry, focused her talk on the different employment opportunities available for dentists in the UK.
“When looking for your first job, you must keep an open mind”
She encouraged the students to establish their own career roadmap, to get all the documentation together as quickly as possible from the University and the Spanish authorities, to carefully prepare strong online applications for posts of interest, to keep in mind the area they wanted to specialize in and then to do postgraduate training.
“You have to enjoy the experience and be flexible,” she said.
Anita also shared some tips with the CEU UCH students regarding keeping good records of all clinical cases with photos and X-rays “as this will help with your progression”, and advised them to publish their clinical cases on professional social networks.
“Those who study Dentistry at CEU UCH are better trained and have more clinical experience than those who study in Taiwan,” said Wan-Ting Lin in her talk at CEU UCH.
A member of the third group of CEU UCH Dentistry graduates, she reminded her listeners of the importance of taking advantage of the training opportunities the University offers.
“At CEU we can learn how to undertake research, to diagnose and to treat patients from the third year onwards. In Taiwan, you do a period of clinical training and then an exam to become a dentist. Studying at CEU is great preparation for that exam,” she said.
She also urged the students to work with other experienced professionals in order to learn more about the different specialties available and then to choose the right type of postgraduate training.
She also reminded the Dentistry students of the importance of showing commitment to society and those around you.
“Helping people who need help is rewarding and CEU has taught us this too”
CEU postgraduate programmes
The event closed with a talk from CEU UCH lecturer Arlinda Luzi, who presented the range of postgraduate programmes for dentistry at CEU UCH.
Dr Luzi highlighted the added value provided by the postgraduate programmes at CEU UCH, including the resources and technology used within each one. Although an expert in restorative dentistry herself, she encouraged the students to explore and discover the areas they are interested in and then choose a postgraduate programme on that basis.
The Vice-Dean for Dentistry at CEU UCH, Dr Mar Jovani inaugurated the event, which was moderated by the Dentistry Coordinator, Elisabet Palazón.