My name is Kyle Wong and this is my story about how one summer became an eye-opening turning point in my life.
During the summer between my junior and senior year in high school, my parents gave me a choice to decide how I was to spend the summer. The condition: it must be educational and I am to write a brief essay about my experience at the end of the summer.
Kyle Wong’s Pledge
One day at my dental appointment, I suddenly became aware of the dental clinic’s environment. In all the years I have been going to see my dentist, Dr. Stan, it dawned on me that I never felt dread or fear going to my appointments. In fact, the office was very warm and friendly. I decided to take the initiative to ask Dr. Stan if he has an internship program so that I can learn about the field of dentistry. He told me that his practice currently does not have any official or formal program to provide practical or learning experience for beginners in the occupation or profession. However, he liked the idea and told me that the office cannot pay any intern right now. I informed Dr. Stan that I would gladly volunteer my time if he would have me.
During the summer of 2018, I followed the dental assistant like a newly adopted little puppy. She was very thorough and clear when explaining office procedures and patient etiquette. Through her I was given an opportunity to "peek behind the curtain" to see how a typical dental office operates.
The most notable aspect at The Perfect Smile is the aura of the office. There is a sweetness of friendship and warmth in the air. I hear sharing of laughter and personal stories when the office is quiet.
The doctors and staff genuinely care about one another. It is this very aspect that seems to combine work and enjoyment so perfectly that makes the environment highly efficient and productive.
As an incentive, my parents offered to pay UP TO $2,000 after reviewing my essay, similar to a scholarship. At that moment in my life, I enjoyed the typical teenager joys such as playing video games and competitive sports, but was rudderless as far as thinking about my future. I only knew my interest lies in Life Sciences, but I did not know, specifically, what I want to study in such a broad field, nor did I have an inkling of a possible career path.
Observing Dr. Stan interacting and consulting with patients is truly a unique experience. He is the epitome of how people skills are extremely important in this industry as the client base will either grow or shrink based on customer service and "bedside manner." Dr. Stan shared with me that his philosophy is to make a difference on a personal, individual level - one person at a time. He also strives to be an exemplary representative of what the field of dentistry should be, a profession that engages in serving humankind by improving health and way of life.
Dentistry is truly a rewarding profession where people get to help others, are constantly learning, and regularly change people’s lives for the better. I am able to now decide with confidence my field of study and a career path, because Dr. Stan and his team graciously welcomed a young, eager-to-learn teen with open arms into their professional world and taught me how it feels to give to and serve others.
I pledge to match my parents' scholarship gift in order to give the same opportunity to another deserving high school junior. For years, I have been saving up money from my allowances and gifts to purchase my first car. However, after my rewarding experience at The Perfect Smile and with Dr. Stan's assistance, I have set up a grant or scholarship to create an internship program at Dr. Stan's clinic for the summer of 2019.
The internship will begin in June 2019 and will pay $500 a week for up to eight weeks to the qualified high school individual. More information and application will be available for download beginning on March 31, 2019 so please continue to visit this site for more details. Dr. Stan and I will review all applications together, and determine the final selection in May 2019.
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