Doctor Spotlight: Dr. Jane Whang, DDS

Position: Area Dental Director for Maryland
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Dental School: Columbia University College of Dental Medicine
Number of Years at Kool Smiles: 8

What did you do before dentistry?
“I was a teacher in inner city New York, and got my Masters specifically to teach in the inner city. I taught for about three years before deciding that I wanted to go back to school, and during my fourth year I applied to dental school.”

You spent some time in cosmetic dentistry. What made you switch to a more mission-based practice?
“While I met some great people in cosmetic dentistry, a lot of the work I did was elective rather than medically necessary. I came to realize that my true calling in dentistry was to help children get the care they need. Once a week I started working at a practice in New Jersey, where I’m from. The dentist there bought a firetruck at an auction and decided to transform it into a mobile clinic. I loved it—I was working with children and, having been a teacher, it was a great fit. I was able to provide dental care to children in need. After working there I realized that was the kind of job I wanted to look for.”

What made you decide to join Kool Smiles?
“I heard about Kool Smiles and was curious about it, so I came down to Maryland to interview. The person who interviewed me had the same views and values that I did, and I realized that the Kool Smiles mission matched mine. I relocated to Maryland and started working for Kool Smiles. As with any job, there are challenges, but I get to do the things that I love and that make a difference, and I get paid to do it.”

What is your current role at Kool Smiles?
I have been with the company for more than seven years, starting as an Associate Dentist. After that I was promoted to a dental director position where I helped with interviewing and training new doctors. Six months after that I got the Area Dental Director position. Now I spend three days a week with patients, one day visiting offices and one day as a leadership day.”

What advice do you have for new dental graduates?  
It can be overwhelming to graduate and have so many job options but still have the burden of loan repayments. However, I would like to remind new grads that this is an exciting time. You worked hard to get where you are and you’re finally done! Don’t be afraid to explore unexpected options and you deserve to find a job that suits you perfectly… one where you feel like you’re making a difference and impacting lives.

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