These four dental graduates from the University of Toronto turned to research and teaching

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For some students, higher education is a way to launch their careers. But others plan to stay in academia to research, teach, and advance their specialty.

Justin bubola, a graduate of the master’s program in oral pathology and oral medicine at the University of Toronto, falls into the latter category.

“I achieved my goal,” says Bubola, who recently joined the Faculty of Dentistry as a part-time assistant professor, education stream. He balances his work, which involves researching and teaching undergraduate and graduate students in pathology, with a few days of private practice each week.

Bubola received a doctorate in dental surgery from Western University before enrolling in a four-year master’s program at the University of Toronto that included hospital residency, research and teaching. The college prepared him well for his busy schedule as a teacher, researcher and clinician. “It was a very intense program with so many facets,” he says.

“During the program, I learned a lot about teaching dental students and really developed a passion for teaching,” he adds.

In addition to passing his Canadian Council and Fellowship Exams, Bubola passed the US exams with flying colors, winning the William G. Shafer Award for achieving the highest score on the American Academy of Fellowship Examination. Oral & Maxillofacial Pathology.

For Hebatullah Hussein, returning to college as a faculty member instead of a student has long been the plan. The dental doctorate graduate arrived at the University of Toronto in 2016 on an Egyptian scholarship. She received funding to complete her doctorate and return to teach at her alma mater, Ain Shams University in Cairo.

“Before coming here, I was doing cutting-edge basic scientific research [at Ain Shams University] was not feasible, ”says Hussein. “I will go back and try to apply what I have learned here.”

In the teacher Anil kishen, Hussein studied root canal materials based on nanotechnology and host-bacterial interactions.

“He’s like a coach,” Hussein says of his supervisor. “It inspires me on how I should mentor my own students later on.” She is currently completing a post-doctorate at the University of Toronto and hopes to return to Egypt within a year.

Alice (Fang-Chi) Li also learned the art of teaching by researching with Kishen. The doctoral and master’s degree graduate in endodontics divides her time between working as a partner in a practice in Toronto, as a clinical teacher in the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Toronto and as a postdoctoral researcher in Kishen’s laboratory. “When I learn from him, I always think, ‘Oh, I didn’t know it could be so clear,’ she says. “He was just born to be a teacher.

Her master’s degree, which she obtained last fall, allows her to practice as an endodontist (a specialty concerned with pulp diseases) in Canada. “Being well trained both in research and in the clinic helps me be a complete endodontist,” she says.

During her PhD, Li focused on using bioengineered nanoparticles to improve root dentin in root canal treated teeth, but she looked at inflammation and wound healing at the root canal. cellular level. “I feel like I broadened my skills to other aspects of research,” she says.

While some had known for a long time that they wanted to enter academia, Nashat Cassim discovered a passion for research and teaching later. The Doctor of Dental Surgery and MSc in Pediatric Dentistry completed a week-long internship at SickKids in the last year of his first degree, followed by a one-year residency at the hospital , which heightened his interest in children’s oral health.

Cassim thought he was not interested in research until he started a project on the experiences of dental students treating patients with intellectual disabilities (under the responsibility of pediatric dentistry).

“I didn’t know I was interested in research until I started doing research that interested me,” Cassim says. “I also realized that I am passionate about education. His new part-time position as Assistant Professor, teaching stream at the Faculty of Dentistry, allows him to work closely with students while doing research on dental education.

Cassim shares his time teaching, working in private practice and working as a dentist at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.

The combination of teaching, research and patient treatment helps Cassim keep abreast of the latest developments in his field, he says. “You are a better clinician if you have a solid foundation for what’s new. When you have that foothold in the academic space, it makes you a more informed practitioner.

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