B.S., Biology, Grand Canyon University
“ Midwestern not only has this technology in its clinic but also allows its students the chance to become a master in their clinical use. ”Nicholas Windauer
Dental Student, Class of 2024
Tell us about your path towards medicine.
I knew I wanted to be in the medical field early on in high school. I worked hard in my hometown of Polson, Montana, to figure out what field I would enjoy the most. I spent my senior year doing shadowing rotations in my local hospital learning about the different fields of medicine. I also worked as a CNA at a skilled nursing facility connected to the hospital at the time. I decided orthopedics was the route for me as I loved woodworking, and the challenging surgeries I observed were not all that different from a shop-class.
However, during my junior year of undergraduate, while studying for the MCAT I got a job as a tech at an oral surgery practice in Whitefish, Montana. I loved the work, and the two surgeons I worked with were incredible. They loved owning their practice and the connections they had with their patients. After this experience, I fell in love with the oral surgery career and rapidly evolving dental field. I decided during that time to switch over to an oral surgery route and started studying for the DAT. My twin brother was already studying for the DAT and helped me catch up to accomplish a great score. From there I applied to schools.
What made you choose Midwestern University?
I married my wife in March of 2020, an incredible woman who is pursuing a career in podiatry. When applying for schools I already knew of Midwestern's exceptional clinical education regarding dentistry and put them at the top of my list. In combination with their dental program, Midwestern has one of the top Podiatry schools in the country, of which there are only a handful. My wife interviewed first and was accepted, and a few months later, I also interviewed.
During the interview process, I appreciated the kindness of my interviewers and dental student guides. The student panel allowed me to learn about the quality of life at the school, and each student seemed happy and friendly. Each gave good advice and seemed to genuinely care about our questions and us. The tour of the sim-lab and clinic demonstrated the advanced nature of Midwestern's clinical preparation and practice. I love to practice a skill many times before performing it live, and it seemed Midwestern allows students plenty of time and resources to use in practice. I also believe that dentistry is currently developing at a blistering pace in regarding to technology. The use of CEREC, cone beam, implant software, and endo software are crucial to a successful modern-day practice. Midwestern not only has this technology in its clinic but also allows its students the chance to become a master in their clinical use. For these reasons and more, I am a huge fan of Midwestern and I am excited to be a part of the Class of 2024.
What are you most excited about going forward?
I am excited to meet my classmates and learn about what our next four years will look like. I am also excited to learn from my D2 partner and hear of their experiences so far at Midwestern. As the year progresses, I hope to get to know the faculty and learn about how a student progresses to become an oral surgeon, and what is required during dental school to achieve this career. I am excited to partake in research, and hopefully progress dental technology. The practice management practices are interesting to me and I am excited to start them learning about owning a business. More than anything, I am excited to be on this second lap of schooling, which will help me attain the career I want for myself.
Nicholas Windauer is a Class of 2024 student from the College of Veterinary Medicine in Glendale.