placebooooo

2+ Year Member
Jun 22, 2015
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Pre-Dental
Some background:
I am currently a senior undergrad beginning my fall semester. I only need 17 more credits to graduate and decided to cram it all in the fall rather than take only 1 course in the spring (my original fall schedule was 14 credits without that one extra course). It's a difficult load, but hopefully I can manage. I wanted to save money than attend again in the spring for a course or two (I'm graduating in 3.5 years as opposed to the full 4).

In any case, I wanted to ask who here was in a similar situation to me? I am currently waiting to hear back from dental schools for interview invites. I don't know what I'll be doing in the spring (and summer). I am a chem major and was thinking maybe I could potentially pick up a 6 month contract job of some sort, but I know that this would be very difficult. It feels weird to graduate in the fall rather than the spring. I just don't know what I'll be doing for the spring and summer and would like to discuss this with you guys and some things you have done in the past.

Aside: more than anything, one of my biggest concerns is getting back to school once it begins. I feel like being off from school spring and summer time (that's like 8 months!) will either make me lazy or make it difficult for me to get back to books. Has anyone felt this way or got over this feeling?

Care to share your thoughts, suggestions, and/or experiences?
 

juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Some background:
I am currently a senior undergrad beginning my fall semester. I only need 17 more credits to graduate and decided to cram it all in the fall rather than take only 1 course in the spring (my original fall schedule was 14 credits without that one extra course). It's a difficult load, but hopefully I can manage. I wanted to save money than attend again in the spring for a course or two (I'm graduating in 3.5 years as opposed to the full 4).

In any case, I wanted to ask who here was in a similar situation to me? I am currently waiting to hear back from dental schools for interview invites. I don't know what I'll be doing in the spring (and summer). I am a chem major and was thinking maybe I could potentially pick up a 6 month contract job of some sort, but I know that this would be very difficult. It feels weird to graduate in the fall rather than the spring. I just don't know what I'll be doing for the spring and summer and would like to discuss this with you guys and some things you have done in the past.

Aside: more than anything, one of my biggest concerns is getting back to school once it begins. I feel like being off from school spring and summer time (that's like 8 months!) will either make me lazy or make it difficult for me to get back to books. Has anyone felt this way or got over this feeling?

Care to share your thoughts, suggestions, and/or experiences?
Hey! I'm also finishing undergrad this December. I'm going to be working at a dental laboratory or try doing some field research just to kind of have fun before I start dental school. From what I hear, the summer before you matriculate is one of the last free summers you have so you should enjoy yourself but still do something meaningful.
 
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placebooooo

placebooooo

2+ Year Member
Jun 22, 2015
303
198
Status
Pre-Dental
Hey! I'm also finishing undergrad this December. I'm going to be working at a dental laboratory or try doing some field research just to kind of have fun before I start dental school. From what I hear, the summer before you matriculate is one of the last free summers you have so you should enjoy yourself but still do something meaningful.
Hey!
Working at a dental laboratory sounds cool! I would love to get involved with something like that.

But yeah, your advice on enjoying the summer while still getting something productive/meaningful done is the way to go. I'll make sure to do just that.

How do you feel about being off from school for a while? Do you think it'll be hard for you to hit the books again?
 
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juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Hey!
Working at a dental laboratory sounds cool! I would love to get involved with something like that.

But yeah, your advice on enjoying the summer while still getting something productive/meaningful done is the way to go. I'll make sure to do just that.

How do you feel about being off from school for a while? Do you think it'll be hard for you to hit the books again?
To be honest, I think so. I think I'll try to stay sharp by trying to learn Korean and studying for the GRE. Not really sure yet.
 

juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Why a

Why are you taking the GRE? Going for a masters, PHD?
Possibly Ortho. Not really sure right now but I know I don't want to take the GRE 3 years later when I have 8 months this December to August of not doing much.
 

juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Hey!
Working at a dental laboratory sounds cool! I would love to get involved with something like that.

But yeah, your advice on enjoying the summer while still getting something productive/meaningful done is the way to go. I'll make sure to do just that.

How do you feel about being off from school for a while? Do you think it'll be hard for you to hit the books again?
Also, I just thought about this but a lot of people begin dental school having been out of school for years so that's just something to keep in mind too!!
 
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placebooooo

placebooooo

2+ Year Member
Jun 22, 2015
303
198
Status
Pre-Dental
Possibly Ortho. Not really sure right now but I know I don't want to take the GRE 3 years later when I have 8 months this December to August of not doing much.
Wait, you need to take the GRE to specialize in orthodontics? I did not know that...
 

caffeine jitters

2+ Year Member
Apr 1, 2017
631
681
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Pre-Dental
I also graduate in December (3.5 yrs) and I'm taking 17 credits as well lol. My plans for the spring are to learn another language, travel, spend time with family, and work part time. I really wanna just soak up as much time with family and friends as possible, because it is going to be scarce during dental school.
 
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Dec 31, 2015
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I also graduate in December (3.5 yrs) and I'm taking 17 credits as well lol. My plans for the spring are to learn another language, travel, spend time with family, and work part time. I really wanna just soak up as much time with family and friends as possible, because it is going to be scarce during dental school.
*Plays video games during spring semester* haha
 
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placebooooo

placebooooo

2+ Year Member
Jun 22, 2015
303
198
Status
Pre-Dental
I also graduate in December (3.5 yrs) and I'm taking 17 credits as well lol. My plans for the spring are to learn another language, travel, spend time with family, and work part time. I really wanna just soak up as much time with family and friends as possible, because it is going to be scarce during dental school.
I'll be honest and say it makes me feel better that other people are in a similar situation. What are the odds haha.

I think it's really cool that you have all of this planned out. Family is definitely a must. Learning a new language is awesome and very helpful (I can speak/write Arabic. I learned it once during some free time I had in the past).

I always dreamed of travelling (But I'm broke. But, by picking up a job, I should be able to go to a few places here and there no matter how little) So this is something I may also do. Instead of learning a new language, I'm thinking about learning how to code (I've always had an interest in it but never got to it).

How about you? Do you feel it'll be hard to get back to dent school and studying after being off for so long? I am :/
 

caffeine jitters

2+ Year Member
Apr 1, 2017
631
681
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Pre-Dental
I'll be honest and say it makes me feel better that other people are in a similar situation. What are the odds haha.

I think it's really cool that you have all of this planned out. Family is definitely a must. Learning a new language is awesome and very helpful (I can speak/write Arabic. I learned it once during some free time I had in the past).

I always dreamed of travelling (But I'm broke. But, by picking up a job, I should be able to go to a few places here and there no matter how little) So this is something I may also do. Instead of learning a new language, I'm thinking about learning how to code (I've always had an interest in it but never got to it).

How about you? Do you feel it'll be hard to get back to dent school and studying after being off for so long? I am :/
Learning how to code sounds cool, definitely go for it! I'm not too worried about getting back into the swing of things. At the end of the day, we've been in school for the majority of our lives so I don't think we'll ever forget how to be a good student. Kinda like riding a bike, ya know?
 

juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Seems risky unless everything works out as planned.
I mean I'd much rather take it now when I have more free time then take it in my 3rd/4th year of dental school or after graduating from dental school.
 
Dec 31, 2015
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I mean I'd much rather take it now when I have more free time then take it in my 3rd/4th year of dental school or after graduating from dental school.
I know what you mean. I'm just saying sometimes things don't go as planned and the scores might expire worst case scenario. Hopefully they don't and good luck to you sir.
 
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SmileItsLife

2+ Year Member
Jan 4, 2017
436
275
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Pre-Dental
I know what you mean. I'm just saying sometimes things don't go as planned and the scores might expire worst case scenario. Hopefully they don't and good luck to you sir.
In my eyes, it's better to have something ready and not use it then scrap it together in the last minute. I hope Justin gets a great score.... Plus it's easier to relearn then learn anew for the first time
 

doc toothache

10+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2006
8,185
2,339
Status
Dentist
Sad state of affairs when, after a college degree, one is competing with high school dropouts for a position in a dental lab.
 
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pookatooth

2+ Year Member
Apr 28, 2017
88
177
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Pre-Dental
Sad state of affairs when, after a college degree, one is competing with high school dropouts for a position in a dental lab.
But Doc, undergrad degree is the new high school dropout! Nothing to be ashamed of. Also if you have that acceptance in hand December 1st ain't nothing going to bring you down for those eight months.

My two cents, find a way to enjoy yourself. Don't work in a dental lab because you will be doing this stuff for the rest of your life. Play video games if that makes you happy. Travel if you have money. Get coddled by your parents at home if they are still down for that and haven't converted your old room into an office. Life is short.
 

smallmediumbig

2+ Year Member
Feb 14, 2016
101
133
Status
Dental Student
I was in your exact position last year. I ended up graduating in December to save money. In the spring, I just lived at home and worked full time at a job that had nothing to do with dentistry. Luckily, this was a job I already had and worked whenever I was home for breaks, so I didn't have to look for a job that I would quit in a few months. As far as getting back into school after all those months off, it was like riding a bike. You'll fall back into your study routine, and it will be fine. Good luck!
 

aggietxdent

2+ Year Member
Aug 30, 2016
236
465
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Pre-Dental
Best thing you can do (as long as you get into dental school in December) is to take an anatomy course and any other hard classes you will be taking D1 year. Maybe Histology, Immunology, or Physiology. Go to a community college, stay at your current college, or do it online. Whatever works for you. Trust me it will help so much in D1 year once you've seen the material. The reason I say only do it if you get into a dental school in December is because anything longer than a summer and you will forget absolutely everything, so it really ruins the whole point.

I know that sounds super lame but even if you did that for your Spring semester, you still have a whole summer to travel/vacation. I wouldn't work in a dental lab or as an assistant. Honestly that would bore the hell out of me and other than some dental jargon and how to use the suction, I don't think it will translate well for later use. However, an anatomy class will lift a lot of weight off your shoulder that first year. Also, at our school if you fail Anatomy or Physiology, you have to repeat the ENTIRE year, so it's a good little safety net knowing you have the knowledge under your belt!
 
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Dasaniii

2+ Year Member
Mar 10, 2016
165
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Best thing you can do (as long as you get into dental school in December) is to take an anatomy course and any other hard classes you will be taking D1 year. Maybe Histology, Immunology, or Physiology. Go to a community college, stay at your current college, or do it online. Whatever works for you. Trust me it will help so much in D1 year once you've seen the material. The reason I say only do it if you get into a dental school in December is because anything longer than a summer and you will forget absolutely everything, so it really ruins the whole point.

I know that sounds super lame but even if you did that for your fall semester, you still have a whole summer to travel/vacation. I wouldn't work in a dental lab or as an assistant. Honestly that would bore the hell out of me and other than some dental jargon and how to use the suction, I don't think it will translate well for later use. However, an anatomy class will lift a lot of weight off your shoulder that first year. Also, at our school if you fail Anatomy or Physiology, you have to repeat the ENTIRE year, so it's a good little safety net knowing you have the knowledge under your belt!
I've been working at a lab for a few months now, and I don't think it's boring at all! :)
 
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juustinkim

D.D.S. Candidate
2+ Year Member
Feb 1, 2017
258
454
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Best thing you can do (as long as you get into dental school in December) is to take an anatomy course and any other hard classes you will be taking D1 year. Maybe Histology, Immunology, or Physiology. Go to a community college, stay at your current college, or do it online. Whatever works for you. Trust me it will help so much in D1 year once you've seen the material. The reason I say only do it if you get into a dental school in December is because anything longer than a summer and you will forget absolutely everything, so it really ruins the whole point.

I know that sounds super lame but even if you did that for your fall semester, you still have a whole summer to travel/vacation. I wouldn't work in a dental lab or as an assistant. Honestly that would bore the hell out of me and other than some dental jargon and how to use the suction, I don't think it will translate well for later use. However, an anatomy class will lift a lot of weight off your shoulder that first year. Also, at our school if you fail Anatomy or Physiology, you have to repeat the ENTIRE year, so it's a good little safety net knowing you have the knowledge under your belt!
Thanks for your recommendation. What would you recommend if I already took Anatomy and Physiology with labs and Immunology. I could look into taking a histology course.
 

aggietxdent

2+ Year Member
Aug 30, 2016
236
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Pre-Dental
Thanks for your recommendation. What would you recommend if I already took Anatomy and Physiology with labs and Immunology. I could look into taking a histology course.
Every school is different but if you took Anatomy in undergrad, I'm guessing you did the whole body. Maybe see if you can find another course that focuses on the shoulder up? Honestly we haven't got there yet but at our school, head and neck anatomy is over half the course, and we barely hit on it in my undergrad Anatomy. You could self teach too! Half the stuff I learn at school, I end up looking up and watching a Youtube video on anyways haha.
 
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knewstance

2+ Year Member
Jun 19, 2016
414
356
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Dental Student
Some background:
Aside: more than anything, one of my biggest concerns is getting back to school once it begins. I feel like being off from school spring and summer time (that's like 8 months!) will either make me lazy or make it difficult for me to get back to books. Has anyone felt this way or got over this feeling?
I spent 1.5 years between my BS and SMP. It wasn't too much of a problem finding the studying routine again. In fact, I think it came back to a better degree.

Sad state of affairs when, after a college degree, one is competing with high school dropouts for a position in a dental lab.
The unfortunate part is that the labs will hire the high school dropouts over a college grad because they know the high school dropouts are there to stay. That is exactly what happened to me when I applied for a lab.
 
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doc toothache

10+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2006
8,185
2,339
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Dentist
The unfortunate part is that the labs will hire the high school dropouts over a college grad because they know the high school dropouts are there to stay. That is exactly what happened to me when I applied for a lab.
They hire high school dropouts because that is all the academic prep required to be a gofer for a dental lab.
 
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Aug 29, 2006
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Teach English in a foreign country. Work as a PA on a movie set. Get a job in Yellowstone of Yosemite. See the Indy 500. Do something fun. Or get a job and start making money. All of this is based on you being accepted to dental school for the fall. What if that does not happen? Even qualified applicants don't get in first shot. Or, you'll get in. Either way, have a plan for both results.
 

ncide

2+ Year Member
Mar 2, 2015
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Dental Student
I had a gap year of 3 years where I was working and making money as an orthodontic assistant, and worked with other docs too. Applied to dental school 2nd year out from undergrad.

I didn't find the transition difficult. Sitting towards the top of my class now. Didn't take anatomy, histology or physiology and did just fine.
 
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