is dentistry worth it if i am interested in pursuing a second career later?

tbee

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Mar 11, 2008
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I am in the process of applying to dental school...I applied last year and got waitlisted at several schools. However this year I have raised my GPA and feel more comfortable with the interview process as I have already gone through several interviews and think there is a chance I might get accepted for fall 2009.

My dilemma is that I have gained some exposure to the business field this past year and have gained an interest in possibly pursuing a career in business...so now I feel stuck between dentistry and business. Some people are saying that dentistry is such a good career and opportunity and business is more risky...so if I get in, I should obtain my degree and work in the field and if I get bored, I can get pursue a career in another field later on. However I'm not too sure this is a good idea considering how much time and money I am investing into becoming a dentist. If I don't see myself staying in this field for more than 10 years for example, is it even worth it for me to go down this route?? Another thing is I would like to have a family and kids in the future so by the time those 10 years has passed, I might not have the luxury to even start a new career because of my obligation to my family...i might be thinking too far down the line here, but who knows. Just wondering if I could hear different people's thoughts on this matter.
 

Quattro DMD

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May 20, 2008
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Honestly, if you're not 100% sure that you want to be dentist then don't fill up a spot that could go to someone else that dreams to be a dentist.
 
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tjdent

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May 29, 2008
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A good option may be to go to a school where you can get your DDS/MBA. That way there will be no schooling later when you have a family and want to switch careers. I think Columbia, UCSF, Temple, and USC have the program, along with a couple others (UCLA maybe?)
 

AggieDDS

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because the kind of business i'm interested in is different from that of running a dental practice
Hey man, I wanna run a playboy mansion too but im saving that til retirement. :xf:
 

seaweed719

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Apr 21, 2008
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you need to focus on finding out which aspects of business interest you the most. is it the extensive social interactions involved? or is it the sheer satisfaction of selling a product? once you have this narrowed down, then you need to ask yourself, can i find the same excitement and satisfaction from dentistry? if the answer is absolutely no, then dentistry might not be the best fit for you. you might want to go through the same process for dentistry as well, and see which aspects of these two fields matter to you the most.

i would say dentistry is by far one of the most flexible careers out there. you don't have to be a practitioner for your entire life. there are tons of dentists who, after getting sick of running a solo private practice, ended up being an entrepreneur or went back to school to do research and became an academician.
 

Ranelar

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Mar 14, 2008
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A good option may be to go to a school where you can get your DDS/MBA. That way there will be no schooling later when you have a family and want to switch careers. I think Columbia, UCSF, Temple, and USC have the program, along with a couple others (UCLA maybe?)
I dont remember USC mentioning it, but UNLV has a combo program. You have to apply separately to the business school though, and it costs additional tuition.
 

Jake8

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Think hard about it because you are about to voluntarily walk into hell for the next four years well at least until you pass part 1 of the boards. Then the fun is just starting as you begin to practice. I am looking forward to it but if I had any doubt I would be high tailing the other way.
 

klutzy1987

StudyingSucks Letsgo Mets
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Jan 28, 2008
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If you only plan on being a dentist for like 10 years I would say not to bother. Its gonna take that long to pay off your debts.
Penn also has the combine degree.
 
A

aguacero

What sort of business are you looking to go into? I know lots of working dentists that have all sorts of business ventures on the side. Real estate, restaurants, etc.
 

Enso

Dr. Troy
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May 24, 2008
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Miami Beach, FL
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I am in the process of applying to dental school...I applied last year and got waitlisted at several schools. However this year I have raised my GPA and feel more comfortable with the interview process as I have already gone through several interviews and think there is a chance I might get accepted for fall 2009.

My dilemma is that I have gained some exposure to the business field this past year and have gained an interest in possibly pursuing a career in business...so now I feel stuck between dentistry and business. Some people are saying that dentistry is such a good career and opportunity and business is more risky...so if I get in, I should obtain my degree and work in the field and if I get bored, I can get pursue a career in another field later on. However I'm not too sure this is a good idea considering how much time and money I am investing into becoming a dentist. If I don't see myself staying in this field for more than 10 years for example, is it even worth it for me to go down this route?? Another thing is I would like to have a family and kids in the future so by the time those 10 years has passed, I might not have the luxury to even start a new career because of my obligation to my family...i might be thinking too far down the line here, but who knows. Just wondering if I could hear different people's thoughts on this matter.
This is a route I plan on going. Is it worth it? Absolutely.

One thing success in business (usually) requires is a foundation of stable money and assets for investment. Is there a better way to build consistent equity than a secure job in medicine? Not that I can think of.

It's quite common for doctors to pursue business ventures after acquiring the monetary assets to do so. My old man has been a thoracic surgeon for 30 years and has since opened up a successful real estate development firm with my uncle.
 

Enso

Dr. Troy
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May 24, 2008
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Miami Beach, FL
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Think hard about it because you are about to voluntarily walk into hell for the next four years well at least until you pass part 1 of the boards. Then the fun is just starting as you begin to practice. I am looking forward to it but if I had any doubt I would be high tailing the other way.
People often forget it's 4 years of hell that shape the next 40 years of their working life.

My take? Those 4 years will pass anyway, whether I'm sitting on my ass with a beer or in the library setting a foundation for success. You'll have plenty of time to have fun when you're referred to as "Dr."
 

toothhead

10+ Year Member
Jul 14, 2007
44
6
Status
Dental Student
I agree with Enso completely. There are plenty of dentists and physicians with business ventures on the side, and not one of them that I know of has ever been sorry to have gone into a medical career first.
It's one of those things where I can almost guarantee that 10 years from now, you won't regret having put off business for dental school. Especially now! People from Wall Street are trying to get into dentistry! :laugh:
 

who knows...

Member
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Jun 15, 2006
137
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Do dental school!!
And then have whatever business you want on the side...
Why not?
That way, if your business ends up failing or not as good as you thought...at least you're not losing out and you're stable..

I myself want several projects on the side...Not necessarily in business...but projects nonetheless that will cater to the needs of others in different ways...
 

Aceofspades

10+ Year Member
Dec 26, 2007
443
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Status
Dental Student
I am in the process of applying to dental school...I applied last year and got waitlisted at several schools. However this year I have raised my GPA and feel more comfortable with the interview process as I have already gone through several interviews and think there is a chance I might get accepted for fall 2009.

My dilemma is that I have gained some exposure to the business field this past year and have gained an interest in possibly pursuing a career in business...so now I feel stuck between dentistry and business. Some people are saying that dentistry is such a good career and opportunity and business is more risky...so if I get in, I should obtain my degree and work in the field and if I get bored, I can get pursue a career in another field later on. However I'm not too sure this is a good idea considering how much time and money I am investing into becoming a dentist. If I don't see myself staying in this field for more than 10 years for example, is it even worth it for me to go down this route?? Another thing is I would like to have a family and kids in the future so by the time those 10 years has passed, I might not have the luxury to even start a new career because of my obligation to my family...i might be thinking too far down the line here, but who knows. Just wondering if I could hear different people's thoughts on this matter.
A second career or business ventures? It seems like you mean business ventures but your post says second career. If you are going into a second career in 10 years or less I don't see a point of doing dentistry, especially since going to dental school takes 4 years and you will be paying off loans for a while as well. If you mean business ventures then I'd say go for it. Many people, especially doctors and other professionals, have business ventures on the side.
 
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