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All about SHADOWING. Cornell University Pre-Dental Society April 19, 2011. Why do we shadow?. Purpose: to gain exposure to the dental field and have a clear understanding of what life as a dentist entails

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all about shadowing


Cornell University Pre-Dental Society

April 19, 2011

why do we shadow
Why do we shadow?
  • Purpose: to gain exposure to the dental field and have a clear understanding of what life as a dentist entails
  • It’s important to shadow dentists in different fields of dentistry to gain a diverse range of experiences.
  • However, it is highly recommended that you shadow a general dentist.
what to look for
What to look for:
  • How? Observe dentists as they go through a routine day interacting, treating, and consulting with patients,
  • Also, observe the atmosphere in a dental office, the interaction between staff, practitioner, and patient.
ways to shadow a dentist
Ways to Shadow a Dentist
  • 1. At private dentist office
  • 2. At a hospital
  • 3. As a dental assistant
  • Seeking a position as a dental assistant for the sole purpose of shadowing is counterproductive and should be avoided
private practice dentistry
Private Practice Dentistry
  • Try contacting a family friend, or someone you know personally (your own dentist!)
  • You can also contact a local dentist in your town. Introduce yourself and politely ask if you can shadow for a couple of days.
  • Dentists are almost always willing to help out the future generation!
  • Have your resume ready to be sent out (if asked)
local dentists
Local Dentists


Bonniwell, Timothy

  • 2377 N. Triphammer Road
  • 607) 266 8600

Lewis, Jeffrey MD/DMD

  • 200 E. Buffalo St. Suite 304
  • 607) 277 7007


Hand, Stephen DMD

  • 102 N. Tioga St.
  • 607) 272 8550


Finger Lakes Endodontics

  • 2333 N. Triphammer Road
  • 607) 257 0539


Cardoza, Thomas DDS

  • 408 N. Tioga St.
  • 607) 272 1080

Conte, John DDS

  • 2333 N. Triphammer Rd.
  • 607) 257 2300
through cornell
Through Cornell
  • Cornell provides shadowing/clinical experiences for pre-dental students.
  • 1) Externship Program through Career Services
  • During the Winter Break, you get to shadow a dentist.
  • 2) FRESH Program
  • Only for freshman; during spring break
  • 3) Urban Semester
  • Fall/Spring OR Summer
hospital dentistry
Hospital Dentistry
  • A great alternative experience
  • Usually require filling out volunteer paperwork and interviewing – based on the hospital policy.
  • Specifically mention that you are pre-dental student
  • Interacting with residents
  • You see a different side of dental work as opposed to private practices – population, procedure, etc.
ask questions
Ask Questions!
  • Don’t just stand there and watch.
  • Ask questions, keep notes, and take advantage of every opportunity available in order to understand all facets of profession from client billing to cavity filling.
  • If you get to know a dentist well enough, he/she can be an invaluable reference on your application.
possible questions
Possible Questions
  • How did you become interested in dentistry?
  • What can I do in college to better prepare for a career in dentistry?
  • Do you wish you did anything differently during undergrad/dental school?
  • What is an average day like for a dentist in private practice?
  • What’s the best part of your work day?
  • What’s the worst part of your work day?
  • What is the future need for dentists?
  • How do you think any healthcare changes might affect the dental practice?
  • (If they are a specialist) What made you want to specialize?
keep track of your hours
Keep Track of Your Hours!
  • There is no real requirement for shadowing
  • But some schools DO require minimum hours of shadowing experience; others recommend it.