“I love that our dental school is really just a big family.”
You could say that Jamie Parado was born to be a dentist. After all, she comes from a long line of dentists, following in the footsteps of her parents, grandmother, great grandfather and aunt. Despite spending most of her childhood in her parents' dental office in Southern California, she wasn't quite sure if the profession was right for her. However, after careful consideration, thinking about security and stability in a career, she decided to pursue dentistry.
"I knew dentistry was something that I could always fall back on but I didn't know if I wanted to go in that direction," says Jamie. "I didn't realize how far it could actually take me until I enrolled in the 3 + 3 honors program at Pacific."
The 3 + 3 program enables qualified high school graduates to earn a bachelor's and doctor of dental surgery degree in six years, both of which are awarded at graduation. Students accepted into the accelerated program study chemistry or biological sciences for three years on the main campus in Stockton. They then continue to study for another three years at the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in San Francisco.
Having been accepted into this honors program, Jamie was excited to start school at Pacific, particularly at the dental school. She knew the Pacific sense of community would remain unchanged as she transitioned from Stockton to San Francisco, especially since she heard nothing but good things about the dental school from friends and faculty.
"I love that Pacific is really just a big family. I feel this is what the dental school has over any other," says Jamie.
While in dental school, Jamie isn't content with just managing the rigorous coursework. She has become involved in several clubs and organizations. She is an officer of the Student Community Outreach and Public Education (SCOPE) organization, vice president of the Alpha Omega dental fraternity and one of the editors of the student-run publication, The Articulating Paper, which is something that Jamie particularly enjoys.
"I think it goes back to high school when I wanted to be a journalist," she says. "But it ended up working out because I get to do both now. I'm still writing so it's a great fit."
Looking ahead to her career after graduation, Jamie feels she has many options. She hopes to enter an Advanced Education in General Dentistry or General Practice Residency program on the East Coast, but her ultimate goal is to open her own dental practice.
"I know the skills I learn during my three years here will allow me to follow in my parents' footsteps and have my own practice," says Jamie.