One of the less obvious – but still very important – roles required of a true professional is the mentoring of new members of the profession. At Rockingham Dental Centre, many graduate dentists have been mentored – including Drs Howard Holmes, Maya Nadarajah, Hari Menon, Sally Whitmore, Claire Porter and most recently Sivitra Sivarajan.
We have also played a role in the practical education placement for dental assistants from the two educators in this state, TAFE and DNA Australia. Since the moth-balling of the Perth Dental Hospital (only Russell and Gerard are old enough to remember “PDH”), practical placements for student dental assistants have been performed by private practices who are specifically approached by these educators. Rockingham Dental Centre has been happy to play its part in this important yet understated role, and the range of personalities and ‘stories’ of the student dental assistants adds quite some vibrancy to our staff, if only for a short time.
In 2017 alone, we mentored a straight-out-of-school student, a more mature-aged mum returning to the workforce, and an Afghan-born student who came to Australia with her family on a humanitarian visa – but who is now an Australian citizen and considers herself as Aussie as Vegemite!