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Learning from Others

May 18, 2021

by Jennifer Wade, DDS

What has your experience with mentorship been like? I have had the privilege of being both mentor and mentee with the CMDA Dental Residency [+] program. It has been a wonderful experience learning the different ways mentorship can happen. Before going through the program, my idea of mentorship was very unimaginative. All I really heard about was people finding a good match for an associateship so you could have someone teach you all their wisdom and experience as you grew into who you were as a dentist. While that is a great way to be mentored, I have realized mentorship comes in many forms. Through doing the CMDA [+] program, I did have more experienced dentists work alongside me and coach me in how to be a better dentist clinically and in my communication with patients. Those same dentists also gave me great wisdom about how to deal with stress, burnout and life balance. The mentorship did not end there, however. Their spouses shared their perspectives on the same things, dealing with stress, life balance and gave insight that was so helpful in expanding the mindset out of just that of a healthcare professional. There was also so much wisdom to be had from working with the staff at my federally qualified health clinics who were from the neighborhoods we served and knew what struggles our patients dealt with. One of the gifts the [+] program gave me was seeking wisdom from the Lord by making sure I was listening to Him when He spoke through others. That has led to a greater capacity for empathy, compassion, understanding and love of others.

Have you thought of mentoring someone? Maybe you have your fill of dentistry throughout the week but want to share some of your other strengths. Asking a younger dentist or dental student over for dinner or to your Bible study can show them the beauty of life outside of dentistry. Your whole family can be a part of the process too! Spouses can give invaluable insight as well, and singles or young married couples need to be encouraged by others who have gone through the ups and downs of life. God has given you spiritual gifts, and there is most assuredly someone out there the Lord could connect you with to invest those gifts into. Ask Him today and wait to see how He moves in mysterious and awesome ways.

Jennifer Wade, DDS

About Jennifer Wade, DDS

Jennifer Wade, DDS, is a general dentist at Christ Community Health Services in Memphis, TN. She is also one of the first graduates from the CMDA Dental Residency program. The CMDA Dental Residency Plus, or The [+] Program for short, is preparing a generation of dental disciples to go throughout the United States and the World providing high quality dental care to the poor in the name of Jesus. Jennifer stays busy by also being faculty for the [+] program, taking care of her husband and two children, and occasionally enjoying time to paint and bake.

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