Advice from admissions officers

If admissions officers could directly counsel all potential applicants on successfully navigating the dental school application process, they would emphasize the following:

  • Passion is vital to producing a winning personal statement. Grammar and creativity are important, but demonstrating both why a student chose dentistry and a passion for the profession are the critical components to a captivating personal statement.

  • Highlight critical thinking skills. Students must illustrate that they can successfully problem solve and deal with conflict in a calm, collected manner.

  • First comes general dentistry. Help students understand they must become a general dentist before they can become a specialist.

  • An informed applicant is a successful applicant. Potential applicants who thoroughly research the application process and spend time carefully and candidly evaluating dental schools as they relate to their individual career goals will stand out from the crowd.

  • Be careful about the imprint you leave. Educate students that social media and other online activity hangs around forever.

  • The DAT should be taken when the student is prepared, not merely to practice. Remind students that scores from each test stay in their record.   

  • You’re admitted! Now what? Encourage students to read their admission letter carefully and follow through on actions needed before their first day of dental school. 

Since dental school admissions officers are not in contact with every applicant, they rely on you, the advisor, to educate and guide students through the application process.