One of the challenges dentists face after graduating is working in isolation. Dental offices frequently lack mentoring or colleagues to bounce ideas off. There’s no longer that sense of community that was experienced in dental school, where there were professors and other professionals to help guide them—which is one of the reasons we see young clinicians opt to work for DSOs or large group practices.
Twenty-six years ago, Dr. Michael Cohen set out to change the way we network with our dental community. He developed a study club network that, as he calls it, is a “university without walls.” Each club has a director who coordinates eight to 10 meetings a year. The goal is to help dentists understand the big picture through extensive treatment planning and hands-on experiences. The study club offers a collaborative learning experience, giving dentists access to local and domestic experts in all clinical, didactic and academic fields of dentistry.
I actually taught a hands-on course for a Seattle Study Club last year. This was the most engaged and interactive group of dentists I’ve had the pleasure of teaching in a long time. I had such a good experience that I was thrilled when they invited me to speak at their annual symposium, which was held in January. This was a truly fascinating experience. The meeting offered a great mix of high quality learning opportunities in a relaxed atmosphere.
If you are looking to improve your skills in all aspects of dentistry, I highly recommend looking for a nearby club. If one does NOT exist, then consider starting your own! This group has more than 260 clubs, with many new ones forming every year. If you decide to start a club, they’ll give you the blueprint and the support you need to make the process seamless.
Click here for more information on Seattle Study Club.
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