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Recent graduate shares benefits of being in ASDA

Members learn networking and sense of community

Paru Gopalan

Paru Gopalan, a 2021 graduate of the West Virginia University School of Dentistry was an active member of the American Student Dental Association during her dental school career. She shared her comments on the WVU ASDA facebook page


“My dental school experience has shaped me in ways that I did not expect. My experience has taught me that victories are incredibly rewarding but the setbacks and mistakes are probably what I learned from the most. Our dental school is unique in that our professors truly care about our success and wellbeing and for that, I am so grateful. The tight knit family that we have here has shaped my experience by reassuring me to give myself some grace on the hard days and count even the smallest of victories as a noteworthy accomplishment. After speaking with students from other schools at ASDA conferences, it is evident that our professors strive to mold us into the best clinicians both academically and clinically. While perseverance does not award you a letter grade, it translates to so much more... so on the really hard days when you just want to scream or cry... don’t give up... persevere. The journey is worth all the hard work and effort.

ASDA has strengthened my sense of community here at the school and throughout District 6. By attending conferences, my classmates and I had the opportunity to network with students from different schools, vendors from all over the country, dental professionals and financial planners. We heard some of the most inspiring talks at these conferences and always left a conference feeling energized and excited about the profession we have chosen.

I’m not quite sure I can pick just ONE fact I love about ASDA because I am incredibly passionate about every facet of it, but I will say that it is an organization that has allowed my classmates (my best friends) and I to unite to advocate for the common good of our profession and patients. Does it get much sweeter than that? I cannot think of a more perfect ending for my dental school education than to be surrounded by my peers and faculty members who not only make me better but also inspire me. Thank you, ASDA—you’ve made my social media game so much stronger and my heart even bigger!” - Paru Gopalan, DDS