Student Q&A with BSDH student Megan Campouris
Megan Campouris was a business major on track to become an accountant when she realized that it just didn’t feel right. An Instagram post connected her with SJVC professor Brenda Kunz, and Megan is now a current student in the Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene (BSDH) online program. She received her associate degree in Dental Hygiene (which is a requirement to enroll in the BSDH program) at Carrington College in 2015. She is expected to graduate this fall. Megan’s time at SJVC has shown her how much she loves the dental hygiene field.
Here, Megan tells us about her background and life before SJVC, what she likes and what is challenging about her program, and what she’s thinking of doing next.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’ve been a hygienist for nearly six years now. I work clinically, full-time. I’m in school to get my bachelor’s. I’m a dog mom and I’m an auntie.
Have you always been interested in dental hygiene? When did you decide to pursue a career in dental hygiene?
I was originally a business major. My parents really wanted me to be an accountant and I really did not. It just didn’t feel right. I’m the youngest of four, and one day my oldest sister, who is a nurse, was talking to me, and she said, “If I could go back and do it all over again, I would be a hygienist.” And it just kind of clicked with me. So I became an assistant, I did my pre-reqs, and then became a hygienist. Once I started getting that knack for dentistry, I never looked back. It just felt right.
What were you doing before you enrolled?
I started pursuing dentistry about 10 years ago. But prior to that, like I said, I was a business major and I was kind of lost. I didn’t know where I wanted to go. I was working part-time jobs here and there and going to school, taking business courses.
Why did you choose SJVC?
Actually, a former teacher of mine at Carrington, professor Brenda Kunz. She had posted on Instagram, saying, “Hey, if anyone’s interested in furthering their education this is a great way. Let me know. This is a great program.” I believe she helped develop it. I sent her a direct message and said, I’m actually really interested. I’ve wanted to get my bachelor’s since I graduated, and I ‘ve been looking for a good opportunity to go back. This was probably six months prior to actually getting involved in the program. And with it being COVID, everything being shut down, it was just kind of like, well, no time like the present, there’s not going to be a better opportunity.
How has COVID affected your experience with your duties and the way you approach your learning?
COVID itself has probably made it easier because it’s not as easy to be taking vacations or going out with friends and stuff like that. There’s not as many excuses as to why you don’t have time to get your degree.
Can you tell us a little bit about your current work as a student and what you find rewarding and what you find challenging?
Regardless of COVID, time management is not on my side, so that’s always challenging. I have a hard time saying no, whether it’s to friends, family, anybody that needs help. I do find the structure rewarding. It’s been nice to be able to establish my set days of the week or set hours that I will be strictly dedicating to school. So that’s been nice. I’m officially halfway through the program, so I’m very excited about this last half. I also took statistics a couple of classes ago and that was the first time I had ever taken it. That was really challenging and rewarding at the same time.
I’m really looking forward to my upcoming class that starts Monday. It’s about teaching dental hygiene in the clinical setting. Once I graduated, I always thought that would be something that I would go back and do, is teach (dental) hygiene.
Is there any advice that you received, or a motto that you use, to get through school?
I always tell myself it’s only temporary. If you feel like something is challenging, just look at it as something you’ll get through, because it’s only temporary and the reward is going to be so worth it in the end.
What would you say to someone thinking about going into dental hygiene or going to SJVC?
I’ve really had wonderful experiences with SJVC. I actually was telling my sister – who is a nurse and has her associate’s and wants to get her bachelor’s –that she really should look into it because it’s been really great.
Are there any staff or faculty members you want to shout out?
Absolutely. Professor [Brenda] Kunz is wonderful. She is always so motivating, so positive, so enthusiastic. She’s always reaching out and making sure everything is clear and that you understand. She truly wants all of her students to succeed and do well and understand.
Do you have a sense of what’s next for you?
I’m actually not sure. I initially thought teaching, but I don’t know. We’ll see. Ideally I would like to stay clinical. I really do love my interactions with my patients on a day-to-day basis, so that’s
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