Su Lin Changing Smiles

Su Lin Lim (2006) always knew she wanted a creative, hands-on career, and it wasn’t long before she knew engineering just wasn’t going to cut it!

Su Lin shares her story with us.

What has your journey been since leaving Santa Maria College?

After high school, I studied engineering at university because I enjoyed the challenge of maths and science as a student. During my first year, I realised that enjoying a field and making a career out of it were two entirely different things. I wanted to be creative and hands-on and interact with people regularly, and thus I found my way into dentistry.

After dental school, I worked in a large dental practice in Perth while building my skills and exploring my passion for surgery. That’s when I knew I had made the right choice many years before because I never imagined my daily life would be so challenging and satisfying at the same time.

After growing tired of corporate culture, I partnered with an old friend to create a female-led dental practice and workplace that our staff would love going to every day. Our practice Simply Teeth has been such a rewarding journey so far, and I am excited to see it grow over the years. Having a team that is like family has always been a big ambition of mine, and I am so proud of achieving this.

What has been a highlight along the way?

Studying and learning from some of the best dentists and surgeons around the world has been a highlight for me. Dentistry opened doorways and opportunities for me that I had never dreamed about. I have travelled to America, Europe and Asia to meet and learn with people who had similar passions to me, and the experience I brought back was always memorable.

What are your fondest memories from your time at Santa Maria College?

I still remember meeting my closest friend for the first time in high school and not thinking much about it. When I look back now, I think of my memories fondly of being able to eat lunch together each day. As we get older and life becomes busier, making time for friends gets harder, but I appreciate it more now than I did back then.

Mr Ryan, my physics teacher, left the most memorable impact on my high school life, and I still follow his attitude towards learning to this day. Make everything you want to learn fun; then, you will never stop growing and challenging yourself.

I would not be where I am now if he hadn’t encouraged and supported my curiosity to learn new things. 

What would you say to someone thinking of a career in dentistry?

The idea of changing people’s smiles and confidence was really an attractive part of the job for me. Having confidence can affect your daily life, relationships, and life decisions. Being able to positively impact so many people who, as a result, impact others around them is not something you can do in many careers. Dentistry is also known to be a very hands-on job, and as someone who has always enjoyed making art, I think I fell into it quite easily.

I am a person who is easily influenced by the energy around me, so being in a positive environment daily is very enjoyable. Dentistry gives you a lot of freedom to explore different areas of the profession depending on your interests and strengths. Especially as a female with many non-dental passions, it is a flexible career that allows you to achieve other life goals. 

Thank you for sharing your story, Su Lin, and for the valuable advice to others considering dentistry as a career.

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