Hinman Connects Blog

A Journey from Dental Assistant to Hygienist to Dental Student
Posted: 9/11/2018

Recently, the Hinman Board of Trustees visited The Dental College of Georgia to award scholarships to dental students and recognized a familiar face… Hinman Hygiene Scholar Hardikkumar (Henry) Dalsania from the 2016 Hinman Dental Meeting! That year, he was featured in our Hinman Scholars Video as a hygiene scholar from Georgia Perimeter College. 


Since we met Henry two years ago, he has since applied for and been accepted to dental school. We were so intrigued with his story, we asked him to share it with us.

Q: How did you first hear of Hinman?

A: After I earned my Certified Dental Assistant certification in 2011, I shadowed and volunteered as a dental assistant. One of the dentists I shadowed informed me about the Hinman Dental Society and Hinman Dental Meeting. I was new in Atlanta, and I did not have any dental contacts at that time.

I decided to attend Hinman in 2012 which was the 100th year of the Hinman Society. There I met a lot of dental professionals from all over the United States. I met a periodontist in one of the CE classes who happened to be looking for a hardworking assistant. After speaking with her in the course, she asked me to come in for an interview. With the help of Hinman, I found my first job as a dental assistant.


Q:  What made you consider dentistry as your profession?

A.      My brother is a physician and has been my role model since childhood. He was always extremely busy with residency and work.  I knew that I also wanted to work in the healthcare field.  I wanted a personal and professional balance and to be able to help people improve their overall health. I also shadowed a dentist during undergrad who helped facilitate my decision to enter the field as a dentist.


Q: You’ve attended the Hinman Dental Meeting in different roles (a dental assistant, a hygienist and next year as a dental student). What has been beneficial to you at the Hinman Meeting?

A: Obviously helping me find my first job as a dental assistant was very helpful.

After a few years working as an assistant, I decided to go to dental hygiene school to expand my knowledge of dentistry. As a dental hygienist, I earned continuing education every year at Hinman which helped me not only maintain my CE hours but also kept me abreast of the current innovations in the dental field. I am extremely excited to attend the Hinman meeting next year as a dental student. Hinman as certainly been part of my journey to become a dentist.


Q:  This is the second Hinman scholarship you have received. Do you have any special plans for how you will use the scholarship funds?

A: I am honored to receive my second Hinman scholarship. I received my first Hinman scholarship as a dental hygiene student while at Georgia Perimeter College. This generous gift from the Hinman Dental Society helps deserving candidates financially. I plan to use the scholarship fund for my education. This gift will reduce my financial burden and will allow me to focus on studying.   


You can see why we were so impressed with Student Doctor Dalsania. We are so pleased to be part of Henry’s journey and look forward to following his career!

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