Roopinder provides all aspects of General Dentistry to her patients. This ranges from a basic examination to routine fillings, crown and bridge work to extractions and fighting gum disease.
Please can you give a brief history of your career since graduating from the University of Birmingham?
Following graduation, I completed my year of Foundation Training in Bromsgrove. After this contract was over, I moved to a smaller NHS and private practice where I gained a lot of confidence working independently. Now I work in a larger, 6 surgery practice in Erdington with great colleagues and look forward to going to work everyday! The work involves a lot of variety and is why I enjoy being a dentist.
What do you love the most about your job and what is the biggest challenge?
What I love most is how through my clinical skills I am able to improve a patient’s quality of life. Dentistry is not easy, it requires a high degree of precision and the best is expected of you all the time. All the pressure and hard work is worth it for the smile that says "thank you”.
How did your degree help prepare you for your career?
My degree was vocational so the whole 5 years are geared at training you for your specific job. The curriculum closely follows what the General Dental Council expects dentists to be competent in. As more time has passed since I completed my degree, I can safely say every module has prepared me for the job, even if it didn’t seem to at the time.
What attracted you to studying at Birmingham?
The traditional approach to teaching Dentistry appealed to me. I had an offer from an equally respectable University that used a lot of ‘problem based learning’ and I knew that this would not suit my learning style, I prefer the more traditional methods.
How would you sum up your time in Birmingham in three words?
Truly character building.
What inspired you most during your time at Birmingham?
The people who taught me on a daily basis were inspiring. One memory I have that always stands out, is of a small gesture made by my Head Of School (Profession P Lumley) when I was a first year student. I was due to have my first lecture from him, and I had not seen him before. On my way to the lecture theatre, whilst carrying a large pile of hand-outs, he stopped to hold the door open for myself and a few friends before he entered. This gesture taught me that above any form of status, courtesy is an important trait in how you treat anybody.
What tips/ advice would you give to people who are considering studying Dentistry at Birmingham?
Be prepared to work hard from day 1. Five years seems like a long time but you will never work harder than how you do at Dental School.
You’re here to be trained as a surgeon so work with that level of focus.
Take advantage of the opportunities / extra curricular that come your way as they broaden your horizons and lead to more opportunities.
Spend as much time as you can learning from your lecturers and clinicians – they really do know their stuff!
How would you advise people to make the most of their time on their course?
Clichéd but true, be organised and it will reduce the pressure you feel and you get the most out of your studies.