Alum Spotlight: Jennifer Ong, MBS22

"Not only do I feel prepared and am self-confident in my ability to succeed, but I also gained so much more through this degree."
Headshot image of Jennifer

With a rigorous curriculum created to closely mirror the first year of Tufts' medical school, students feel more than prepared upon graduating from our MBS program. However, students get so much more from their time in our program. Hear from recent graduate, Jennifer Ong, MBS22, about her experience and how the MBS program prepared her to begin dental school at Tufts School of Dental Medicine.  

Why did you choose to pursue this degree?
"I chose to pursue an MS in Biomedical Science to prepare myself for the academic rigor of dental school. Not only do I feel prepared and am self-confident in my ability to succeed, but I also gained so much more through this degree. One thing I learned through MBS that really stuck with me is that 'your mouth is the window to your health.' With that being said, I believe that it is extremely important that medical and dental professionals have an interdisciplinary approach to treating patients. Having completed the program alongside incredible and intelligent classmates and professors, I know I have gained many invaluable relationships that I will be able to rely on and collaborate with in my career as a future dental provider."

Why did you choose Tufts to pursue your degree?
"Growing up in the Boston area, Tufts has always been known as a prestigious university. Although this played a small factor in my decision, I ultimately chose Tufts MBS after speaking to previous students in the program. They all shared experiences of being part of a strong community—where classmates worked together and everyone wanted to help each other succeed. I knew that if I chose Tufts, I would be around the same support and environment."

Describe your experience in the program:
"I joined the program during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in MBS being completely virtual. Although the classes were challenging, I was met with supportive classmates who shared study materials and professors that were readily available to help through office hours. Between the academic rigor of the courses and the pandemic, it could have been extremely isolating. However, the MBS faculty, Tufts’ SWO (Student Wellness Organization), and my fellow classmates did a fantastic job of ensuring a strong sense of community throughout my time. From virtual study groups to Zoom social hours, I genuinely felt part of the program and school—the same way I would have in person."

What is your favorite aspect about the program?
"I developed great relationships with the faculty and students. I have made lifelong friendships through this program, where I know I will continue to keep in touch throughout our respective careers. My favorite aspect about this program was that each individual I met was passionate about their work, made learning fun, and strived for success."

What was your proudest personal accomplishment while at Tufts?
"One of my proudest personal accomplishments at Tufts was my role in helping the transition to virtual learning as smooth as possible as one of the Audio-Visual (AV) assistants. My roles as an AV assistant included working alongside our professors to ensure that the Zoom lectures ran without any issues and recording/uploading class lectures for my classmates to watch/rewatch. This was a big responsibility as I had to be extremely organized and be able to effectively time manage to get lectures uploaded in a prompt manner and am pleased that I was able to accomplish my part. I knew that transitioning to virtual learning was difficult for both the student and the faculty. I am proud that I was able to do my part to help both parties make this transition as easy and seamless as possible."

What did you go on to do after graduating?
"I will be attending Tufts School of Dental Medicine (TUSDM) after graduating from MBS in May 2022! While at TUSDM, I am excited to carry the tools I have learned through MBS to become the best dental provider I can be."

What do you want a prospective student to know about Tufts?
"I would want a prospective student to know that Tufts' curriculum can be extremely challenging at times, but that the people you will meet throughout your time here will support you to overcome both academic and personal challenges. I would encourage them to not be afraid to ask for help and to make sure they take full advantage of the community they will undoubtedly build here. For me and so many of my classmates, Tufts’ collaborative student nature and its incredibly supportive faculty made it the best program to prepare us academically and emotionally for medical/dental school."

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