One year ago this month, Dr. Emily Ishkanian took the stage at Loews Philadelphia Hotel as one of the six inspirational women honored by the Lucy Hobbs Project in 2017 as the recipient of the Project’s Mentor Award.
The Henderson, Nevada-based dentist demonstrated commitment to education early, graduating as Valedictorian from her high school. Upon obtaining a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Colorado, Boulder, she returned to Nevada to pursue a career in dentistry. In 2010, she graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Dental Medicine and three years later was awarded UNLV’s Alumni of the Year for her continued commitment and dedication to students and alumni.
Her journey as a student is lifelong, though. Dr. Ishkanian is a member of the Academy of General Dentistry, where she attends continuing education courses in order to obtain a fellowship degree in general dentistry.
Dr. Ishkanian began practicing at Green Valley Dental Center in addition to serving as an adjunct faculty member at UNLV School of Dental Medicine.
This may come as a surprise, but even successful professionals have their doubts. Dr. Ishkanian faced some hurdles along the way. In an interview with Incisal Edge magazine, she said:
“You wonder if this is normal or if you made the right decisions, whether with a patient, a patient plan or your career in general,” she says. “Sometimes it’s not what you expected.”
Know someone helping others navigate their dental path?
There’s still time to nominate an Mentor for a 2018 Lucy Hobbs Project Award prior to the April 27, 2018 deadline.
Award categories include:
- Woman to Watch: An up-and-coming leader who utilizes her position to create positive change in the industry
- Industry Icon: A trailblazer who is consistently recognized and admired for her work in the dental industry
- Mentor: An advisor who recognizes the importance of supporting, educating and encouraging others
- Innovator: A groundbreaker who demonstrates a willingness to implement new technologies and business processes without fear of potential failure
- Humanitarian: An altruist who works tirelessly for a charity or cause that benefits the well-being of others
- Clinical Expert: A skillful practitioner who embraces advancements and adeptly integrates them into patient care.
If you know someone who fits the criteria above, click here to nominate her today.
Mark your calendar to attend this year’s celebration September 13 to 15 in San Francisco. Don’t wait to register: https://www.lucyhobbscelebration.com/
How does Dr. Ishkanian assist dentists in their transition from school to practice?
In her post as chair with the American Dental Association’s New Dentist Committee, she finds herself deeply embedded in national, state and local work to assist dentists in their transition from school to practice.
A member of the Pierre Fauchard Academy, Dr. Ishkanian provides oral health care to patients in Henderson, Nevada while dedicating time outside the operatory to create a path for others’ professional growth.
“I did not have a parent in dentistry, and if it hadn’t been for my own mentors, my path would have been an intimidating challenge,” Dr. Ishkanian says.” “I feel like now is my chance to do that for someone in my position.”
Her four years with the American Dental Association have been a nonstop flurry of networking, mentoring, counseling, and advising other young dentists.
Through it all, she told Incisal Edge, she has stuck to some simple advice: “In five years, you’ll feel much better about all of this.”
This advice applies to those recent graduates and other new doctors who, between seeing patients and being bogged down by student-loan debt, experience regular bouts of self-doubt.
“Just to get to five years, because you learn so much in the first five that you don’t know initially. Once five years hits, it all kind of clicks,” Dr. Ishkanian told Incisal Edge.
In 2011, she created the Southern Nevada New Dentists network to help others help themselves when starting out. The group initially brought together other young dentists in the Las Vegas area for continuing education, professional development, networking and mentoring.
SNND began to attract national attention. In 2013, the American Dental Association asked Dr. Ishkanian to serve on its New Dentist Committee. Through that organization, she has since led national, state, and local efforts to help new dentists transition from school to work.
Dr. Ishkanian calls the ADA group “the voice of the new dentist.” We call her the dentist with a voice.