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dental careers and practice transitions dental careers and practice transitions

“Some people are destined to be dentists.”

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Some people just know exactly what they want to do with their lives. Even from a young age, these individuals have no doubt about the direction they want to take and where they want to end up. You might be just such a person. Dr. Sophie Campbell certainly was, and she reached her mountain top with flying colors. But that doesn’t mean she wasn’t thrown a few curveballs along the way.

Ever since she was a kid growing up in Iowa, Dr. Sophie Campbell’s life seemed to say to her, “You’re going to be a doctor.” She was a natural leader, preferring to take charge of every situation and see it through. She was drawn to the sciences and always aced her biology and math classes. And she has always had a firm desire to help other people. Even her high school career assessments pointed her to medicine! All in all, she had the right stuff for a doctor in the making. The puzzle lay in what type of medicine, and that one wasn’t quite so easy to figure out.

At the age of 12, the future Dr. Campbell seized an opportunity to explore her interest in medicine by going with her cousin to get a mole removed. “I thought it would be a cool experience to see a doctor in action, and not be the patient,” said Dr. Campbell. It didn’t quite go as planned however, and as soon as scalpel hit skin Sophie passed out. She recovered quickly, and although she would eventually get past her discomfort with blood, the experience took surgeon off the table as a career option. It probably doesn’t help that to this day her family still won’t let her forget that moment.

A short time later, Sophie went in to get braces. Upon entering the orthodontist’s office, her interest was once again peaked. “I was really intrigued by my orthodontist,” Dr. Campbell said. “I was always asking him a bunch of questions and watching everything he did. Even his assistants took notice and offered to explain things to me and showed me their methods.”

Then the final piece of the puzzle fell into place. Sophie had become so interested in dentistry that after she had her braces removed, she started shadowing her general dentist to learn even more. After a few days in the practice, she made her decision. She would be a dentist. And she never looked back.

Sophie had been an athlete most of her life, and she ended up going to Graceland University in Iowa to play softball. With her penchant for science, she pursued degrees in biology and chemistry. But it was here where she also learned she had a knack for business. “I became a project leader in the Students for Free Enterprise group,” said Dr. Campbell. “My biggest achievement was organizing an annual downtown carnival that is still going strong to this day. So not only was I confident that I could be a good doctor, but I also felt I had what it took to lead a practice.”

After graduating, Dr. Campbell interviewed at the Iowa School of Dentistry. She immediately knew she didn’t want to go anywhere else, and she even removed applications to all other schools. It was Iowa, or bust. She was accepted and went on to become president of the Delta Sigma Delta dental fraternity. This is where she had her first experience with Midwest Dental.

“Midwest Dental sponsored one of our tailgate events, and at first I assumed they were just another corporate DSO,” Dr. Campbell admitted. “But my conversation with Kayla from the recruitment team was casual, personable and fun, and she never pushed anything on me. She made it very clear that Midwest Dental cared about what interested me and what I wanted in a career. It was a nice change from the sales pitch conversations I was used to hearing.”

After graduating, Dr. Campbell needed to decide on her first career move. “I had been in contact with my old dentist back home and could have found a job there,” she said. “But I wasn’t ready to go right back home and settle down, and I feared that if I took the job, I would never leave again.”

At the same time, she was dating her future fiancée Ian, who was a long way away in Mississippi. He was applying to go to oral surgery school and Dr. Campbell was going to go with him wherever he ended up. Suddenly Sophie found herself with limited career options and an uncertain future. That’s when Midwest Dental reentered the picture.

Ian got interviews to schools in five states, four of which were home to Midwest Dental practices. Recalling her pleasant experience in dental school, Sophie reached out to Kayla and mentioned she would love the opportunity to work with them if the circumstances allowed. Midwest Dental was happy to oblige.

Dr. Campbell ended up going to Minnesota, and Midwest Dental sprang into action. Sophie was living in the Twin Cities, which was her first choice for a practice location. There were no immediate positions open in the area, but Midwest Dental had an idea. They had an opening at their practice in Hinckley, Minnesota, about an hour drive north of the cities, and made a proposal.

“Hinckley was a longer drive, but Midwest Dental accommodated everything,” Dr. Campbell exclaimed. “They worked my commute time into my weekly hours to ensure I could enjoy a regular work day and spend time at home with Ian, whom I had just recently married by that time. They also offered me first right of refusal as soon as a position opened closer to home. I’m just so thrilled about everything they have done to make sure I’m happy with my career choice.”

After a few suspenseful moments along the way, Dr. Campbell has found her dream career. “My experience with Midwest Dental has been nothing but positive, and they really stood out from the pack,” Dr. Campbell exclaimed. “I remember when the Hinckley job was first mentioned to me, Kayla met me in Iowa City and drove with me all the way to Hinckley and back in one day. It was over eight hours in the car and I don’t think there were more than a few seconds where we weren’t chatting and laughing. I can’t think of a better way to describe how wonderful my new colleagues are.”

Neither can we.