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One on one time with Dean BEFORE an interview

bryan45876

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    Has anyone ever had some one on one time with Dean of Admissions BEFORE their interview?

    I would like to go and visit my state school (U of Memphis) and when I called the school the receptionist signed me up for an appointment with the Dean. She said he would also give me a tour of the facility and the whole thing would take 40 minutes or so.

    Maybe it?s just me, but I?m a little nervous about meeting the dean of admissions before I?ve even shadowed a dentist.
     
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    dentalarts

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      Bryan -

      You will be meeting with Dr. Wisdom Coleman I suppose. He is very personable and interesting to converse with. You have nothing to be nervous about.

      I interviewed at UT Memphis in late March. Dr. Coleman spent the entire day with us and answered every single question. Initially, he spoke about the school and curriculum for about 1.5 hours before the interviews began. The interview was in the committee format with Dr. Coleman present on the panel.

      You have a fun day ahead of you. The pre-clinical facilities at UT are state of the art.

      James H
       

      bryan45876

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        Yes, it is Dr. Coleman. I really will need to have a lot of topics/questions ready; otherwise I could see this as being a very long 40 minutes. On a side note, I don't own a suit and it will be the middle of May. :(

        I was hoping to be able to meet some current students, but from what the receptionist told me, my time will be spent with only Dr. Coleman. Maybe some current students/fellow SDNs will see this thread.
         

        Calculus1

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          bryan45876 said:
          Yes, it is Dr. Coleman. I really will need to have a lot of topics/questions ready; otherwise I could see this as being a very long 40 minutes. On a side note, I don't own a suit and it will be the middle of May. :(

          I was hoping to be able to meet some current students, but from what the receptionist told me, my time will be spent with only Dr. Coleman. Maybe some current students/fellow SDNs will see this thread.

          Then I would find at least a shirt and tie. As for the middle of May, I had my first interview at the end of August for Univ of Texas San Antonio, it was over 100 degrees. Also, most dental schools will let you wander around after a tour and some ,if not most, even encourage it so you're bound to run into students.

          P.S. unless it's a money issue, if you were to get a suit now because you'd no doubt use it for your actual interviews. I got mine fitted one week and I had an interview the next, so I cut it pretty close time-wise.
           

          LNinlove

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            I also have an appointment with a dean in May. I JUST went back to school and I am very far away from completing my 4 year, but he said that it is never to early to start. He said that he would "advise" me on what classes to take that would benefit me the best among other things. I am very excited about this opportunity and I can not wait. He sounds like a very nice man and he also sounds very busy, so I need to come up with a few more questions before I meet with him. Good luck in your interview!
             

            Yah-E

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              I don't believe you need to "buy" and "wear" a suit to this meeting! Simply look representable and have fun with it. The goal of this meeting is to introduce yourself, demonstrate your motivation to the school and get some of your questions answered.

              Since this meeting is unofficial and informal, there is absolutely no need to dress up. Don't show up in a Budweiser shirt and cutoff jean shorts, just look presentable. Don't get too serious about it.

              Things to bring:

              1) your transcripts
              2) your DAT transcripts
              3) your personal statement (if you have it)
              4) parents (if they have questions also)

              Things to ask:

              1) scholarship availability
              2) what type of applicant they look for (do they emphasize on DAT or GPA more, x amount of time to shadowing dentists)
              3) clinical experiences (how early do you see and touch patients)
              4) how did their seniors do on their SRTA (Southern Regional Testing Agency) licensure exams (passing rate for 1st time takers)
              5) How many seniors end up specializing (what percentages)
              6) where they rank in NBDE Part 1 scores
              7) Research opportunities
              8) Clubs and organizations availability
              9) with showing him everything you have that day, "what can I do to make or maintain my competitiness as a future applicant"
              10) Can you spend a day in the clinic with an upper classman for a day
              11) New technology? Do they have digital radiography yet, do they use laptops, do they have DentSim (virtual reality restorative machine)
              12) ask for a thorough tour of the facilities (if not given)

              If I guess right, your meeting will not take longer than 15 or 20 minutes at tops! These informal meetings are usually pretty short. If you get the tour, then you'll have more time to ask questions. I know you may have a ton of questions to ask, but try not to overwhelm the guy as he can get annoyed (I don't care how nice the guy is, we, human beings, always get annoyed)!

              Your mission and goal for this meeting is simply to demonstrate your motivation and dedication for this particular school. Good luck and don't be nervious, they can pick that up very easily!

              I've met, spoke to, and have written to many dental admission coordinators/deans/directors in my life and now I meet/talk to/write to many OMFS residency directors, there's nothing to be afraid, you're just that much more focused.

              One last thing, smile, not a "perma-grin", but smile to show you're interested.

              :thumbup:
               

              critterbug

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                Yah-E said:
                Don't show up in a Budweiser shirt and cutoff jean shorts, just look presentable.


                I totally disagree. Just throw on a sportcoat, it should be fine. Budweiser shirts are good for any occassion. Cut off jeans are a little seasonal, not my preference, but should be OK. Make sure and wear knee high tube socks, but only if the stripes match your sport coat. Thats the key. Tube socks MUST match sport coat

                ALRIGHT, now your good to go. KNOCK 'UM DEAD :thumbup:
                 

                LNinlove

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                  Awesome Yah-E thanks a lot for the help! I printed all the info out as most of it pertains to me. I did have a couple other questions since I am new to this forum...(maybe this isnt the right thread for these questions)

                  Being from the midwest, I am curious about two schools in particular. These schools are UMKC (University of Missouri in Kansas City) and the University of Colorado School of Dentistry. While viewing the threads on this forum I have seen UCSD mentioned once and UMKC no times. Are they not as desirable as other schools or just not as big or some other reason that I am unaware of? That is all for now....thanks!
                   

                  Sam Spade

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                    Don't worry. It's an extraordinarily friendly gesture for the dean to offer a meeting with you before you've even submitted the standard application. Such generosity must reflect the personality of the dean and admissions committee at this school. Use the opportunity constructively and be sure to express proper gratitude. Learn something about the school in advance and be able to explain why you're interested in Dentistry and UT Memphis in particular. Come with questions prepared. I met with the dean at UNC last August before applying [in casual attire] and the meeting was extremely helpful... You don't need a suit.
                     

                    Calculus1

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                      LNinlove said:
                      Awesome Yah-E thanks a lot for the help! I printed all the info out as most of it pertains to me. I did have a couple other questions since I am new to this forum...(maybe this isnt the right thread for these questions)

                      Being from the midwest, I am curious about two schools in particular. These schools are UMKC (University of Missouri in Kansas City) and the University of Colorado School of Dentistry. While viewing the threads on this forum I have seen UCSD mentioned once and UMKC no times. Are they not as desirable as other schools or just not as big or some other reason that I am unaware of? That is all for now....thanks!

                      My mom went to UMKC (class of '80) and it's a good clinical school. As a sidenote, I've noticed that a lot of the people on here are either from the east or west coast, so they wouldn't be looking at a school like UMKC because it's damn near impossible for an out of stater(esp. one from a state that has a dental school i.e. California) to get in. I don't really know a whole lot about Colorado, but I bet you can get a good dental education there as well. Again, just because it's not talked about a lot on this forum doesn't mean it's a bad school.
                       
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                      ItsGavinC

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                        Yah-E said:
                        10) Can you spend a day in the clinic with an upper classman for a day
                        This is an awesome question! Be sure to ask it. Chances are it will result in a day that you will never forget. You'll see the school firsthand from the student's standpoint and you'll get really pumped up about going to dental school. Don't pass that opportunity up! :D
                         

                        trypmo

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                          I did this, and it's a terrific experience! I agree with most of what's previously been posted.

                          I didn't wear a suit, but rather went "business casual," and it turned out fine.

                          I brought a list of questions. I thanked myself for it, because I got a little nervous and had to look at the list. Having stuff on paper generally makes you look organized and well-prepared, so I don't think I seemed as nervous as I really was. The Dean seemed to think it was perfectly okay when I looked at my paper.

                          In fact, I brought a whole folder full of relevant papers (like the ones listed in previous posts). I ended up not needing some of the stuff, but it was great to be able not only to talk about some issues but to pull out a printout and say "hey, I was reading about this thing, and I noticed blah blah blah," instead of "well I've heard from somewhere, I think it was the school's website, uhh, that blah blah blah."

                          During our conversation, the dean actually offered to let me "shadow" a student for a day, and a few weeks later I did, and it's THE awesomest experience! Definitely don't pass it up!

                          One more thing I'd add: think really hard about a question you'd like to ask: not just any question, but one that will show your intelligence and your interest in the school. Ask something that requires some knowledge of the school. Show you've been doing your homework, both about the school and about the profession. Tailor your question to whether the dean is a Ph.D. or a D.D.S./D.M.D. (e.g., probably back off on any questions directly regarding clinical practice if they don't have a dental degree). Whenver I go to meet anybody for the first time, I try to do this, and it usually succeeds in making a good impression (plus the background research re school & profession is always really, really good for us to do anyway!).

                          Hope this maybe helps a little. Have a great time at your meeting! :thumbup:
                           

                          Jessicasmiles

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                            bryan,

                            don't forget to send a thank you letter after! this will make a big difference i think. thank the dean for his time and maybe tell him that you look forward to applying and that you will stay in touch with him.

                            jessica
                             

                            Calculus1

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                              Jessicasmiles said:
                              bryan,

                              don't forget to send a thank you letter after! this will make a big difference i think. thank the dean for his time and maybe tell him that you look forward to applying and that you will stay in touch with him.

                              jessica
                              I agree with Jessica, THIS is when a thank you note matters. I've said in other threads that sending a thank you note to your interviewer is really not all that necessary because once everyone sends in thank yous it loses its clout. Dr. Coleman is taking time out of his day to show you around. I sent thank yous when the head of oral surgery at Baylor let me observe over my spring break last year. Always a good move when someone goes out of their way. JMHO
                               

                              LNinlove

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                                hey calc,
                                I had my meeting with the dean of CU a few days ago. It went really well, I was rather nervous, but he was very nice and sincere. I had a printed page of questions for him and he seemed to be impressed that I was so prepared. I walked by a classroom, and it really got me excited for dental school! Also, seeing everyone in their scrubs made it kind of a reality for me. I am going to send him a thank you tomorrow....thats about it.
                                 

                                Halitosis

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                                  trypmo said:
                                  I did this, and it's a terrific experience! I agree with most of what's previously been posted.

                                  I brought a list of questions. I thanked myself for it, because I got a little nervous and had to look at the list. Having stuff on paper generally makes you look organized and well-prepared, so I don't think I seemed as nervous as I really was. The Dean seemed to think it was perfectly okay when I looked at my paper.

                                  i like your style, trypmo. do you think you'll write down your questions on paper during the actual interview?

                                  also, did you meet the deans of all three dschool? or just the dean of the most popular one, san antonio?
                                   

                                  trypmo

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                                    Halitosis said:
                                    i like your style, trypmo. do you think you'll write down your questions on paper during the actual interview?

                                    also, did you meet the deans of all three dschool? or just the dean of the most popular one, san antonio?
                                    Yes, I actually did write down my questions on paper, but before the meeting, so that when I got to the meeting I had a "cheat sheet" in case I got nervous & forgot what to say (which, of course, happened). :D

                                    I've only met with Dr. Thomas (San Antonio) so far, and that's just because it's my personal first choice school, not because it's popular. I'm planning to try and make appointments with the deans of the other 2 texas schools, but I'm actually not sure when that's going to happen because my schedule's gotten quite a bit worse than it was a couple of months ago. :(

                                    What are your plans? Are you applying this year?
                                     

                                    Halitosis

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                                      trypmo said:
                                      Yes, I actually did write down my questions on paper, but before the meeting, so that when I got to the meeting I had a "cheat sheet" in case I got nervous & forgot what to say (which, of course, happened). :D

                                      What are your plans? Are you applying this year?

                                      oh, no, what i meant by "the actual interview" is the interview you are granted after submitting your appl. yeah, i know you took a "cheat sheet" in to the semi-formal meeting w/ the dean, but i was just wondering if you'll do the same for the formal interview that's going to decide your fate....

                                      that's right trypmo, i'm applying right now also. i don't think i'll do what you did though....
                                       

                                      trypmo

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                                        Halitosis said:
                                        oh, no, what i meant by "the actual interview" is the interview you are granted after submitting your appl. yeah, i know you took a "cheat sheet" in to the semi-formal meeting w/ the dean, but i was just wondering if you'll do the same for the formal interview that's going to decide your fate....

                                        that's right trypmo, i'm applying right now also. i don't think i'll do what you did though....
                                        Ahh, I see what you're saying. If I got any interviews, I'd probably do the same thing for those because if anything I'd be more nervous then.

                                        I guess the main reason I set up an early pre-application meeting is that I'm a non-traditional applicant and I had some complicated questions about my situation that the Health Professions counselors said to take directly to admissions deans, so I did.

                                        It ended up being a really positive experience that I'd recommend to both traditional & non-traditional applicants who are scoping out the d-school scene.
                                         

                                        bryan45876

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                                          Well, I got back from my trip to Memphis yesterday, and it was phenomenal. I met up with fellow SDNer DATMATT for lunch, thanks for all the information Matt, and then I met with Dr. Coleman at 2 oclock. Not only did Dr. Coleman sit with me for half an hour and answer every question I had (yes, I did have a list, thanks for the advice trypmo), he then gave me a complete tour of the school that lasted over an hour! He also said that I COULD come back and shadow a 3rd or 4th year student in the clinic (thanks, Yah-E), but I don?t think I?ll be able to do it until October because of my schedule.

                                          Memphis is a large city and has many of the problems that a city that large does, but the dental school seems to be in its own little world. Everyone I walked past smiled and said hello. And this wasn?t just while I was with the dean, but while I was by myself as well.

                                          The pre clinic lab at Memphis is amazing. They have over 40 dent sim machines set up in a lab. I saw 2nd year students working in the pre clinic area, 3rd year students in actual clinic, and 4th years in OMS. As I was walking by one of the students asked if I wanted to see an extraction and I relied ?Sure? and then I watched as 2 teeth were pulled out from an elderly women.

                                          I would definetly recommend any interested pre dent to go to their school and meet with the Dean of Admissions, you will have a great time. Oh, I almost forgot, I'm going to be sending a thank you card tomorrow.
                                           
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