2975 Westchester Avenue, Suite G02, Purchase, NY 10577
The Secret to Becoming an Oral Surgeon WHAT YOU GET
One thing a lot of people don’t know about becoming an oral surgeon is there are two tracks you can follow. There’s a four-year program after dental school, which is just oral-surgery training, and there’s a six-year program that requires going to medical school for an MD degree. I decided to take the second option and trained at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. The school has since been renamed the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in honor of New York businessman and philanthropist Carl Icahn. It was a privilege to attend Mount Sinai. Admission is very competitive, and I was thrilled to get accepted. Attending Mount Sinai was one of the most exciting times of my life. Everything was new
As I worked to become an oral surgeon, I was constantly reminded that what you put in is what you get out.
and interesting. Don’t get me wrong, it was hard work, but everything I did and every class I took was pertinent. It was all preparation for my future career, so I gave it my all because I wanted to be the best once I got my license and started practicing. As I worked to become an oral surgeon, I was constantly reminded that what you put in is what you get out. Nothing good comes easy. It all requires hard work and putting in the time. There were countless nights and weekends when I wanted to go out with my friends or, better yet, be sound asleep in bed, but I would have paid the price in class. Instead, I gritted my teeth, buckled down behind those massive textbooks, and kept plugging along. Sometimes it felt like those six years at Mount Sinai would never end. Then the day came when I was standing there with my diploma in hand, and I knew it had all been worth it. At this point in my career, I’ll sometimes talk to high school students or those about to graduate from dental school who ask me about getting into oral surgery. When students express interest in the field, my first piece of advice is to spend time with residents in training and seasoned oral surgeons. I’m certainly happy to spend time with students who are interested in the field. It is very rewarding to share your knowledge with
others and help them along their career paths. Not every student I’ve worked with has committed to oral surgery, but I was happy to help inspire those who did. In my second year of dental school at Columbia University College of Dental Medicine, I had the privilege of meeting Dr. Louis Mandel. He taught the oral and maxillofacial surgery course and ran the salivary gland clinic at the university. Dr. Mandel became a great mentor and instilled a passion for oral and maxillofacial surgery in me. If you can spend time with oral surgeons, be humble and ask a lot of questions. To say this job is demanding is an understatement — I highly recommend making sure this is something you want to do before getting into the four- or six-year program after dental school. When I first applied to Mount Sinai, I knew I wanted to become an oral surgeon. I had a vision for my future, and I was ready to do whatever it took to get there. Today, when I walk into the practices I run with my partner, Dr. Graffeo, I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished. I can’t imagine doing anything differently.
–Dr. Harrison Linsky
Westchester Office • 914-251-0313www.oralsurgeryofwestchester.com
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