Dean’s Page Alumnus: Santiago Tellez ’18, PCC, Dental School
By Ngoc Nguyen
Santiago Tellez ’18
Degree: B.S., polymer and color chemistry
Current position/employer: dental student at UNC Adams School of Dentistry
Dean’s page: May 2016 – May 2018
Tell us about your current role:
I am currently a third-year dental student and I love every aspect of it! Dental school is challenging, but getting to interact with my patients, professors, and future colleagues excites me each day. After graduation, I hope to either join a dental practice as an Associate Dentist or start a General Practice Residency program.
Other NC State/Wilson College activities:
Pre-Health Club, Pre-Dental Club, Kappa Tau Beta, Tompkins Textile Student Council, American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists, Sigma Tau Sigma, Wilson College of Textiles Student Ambassadors, the Centennial Scholars Program and the University Scholars Program. I was also involved in various intramural sports and enjoyed volunteering for organizations like Habitat for Humanity, North Carolina Missions of Mercy Clinics, and Wake Smiles among others! I had an internship and worked on a research project at UNC Adam’s School of Dentistry, and mentored other pre-dental students.
Looking back, what was it like being a dean’s page?
I found out about this position through one of the weekly emails sent out by the Career Services office. I was curious and decided to apply, admittedly not expecting to be chosen, but once selected I loved every aspect! My favorite part of being a dean’s page was working with Amanda Padbury because she was always coming up with random, fun tasks for the pages based on our unique skill sets. I enjoyed the open-environment workspace that came with the position because it allowed for easy and natural interactions with staff, professors and visitors of the college on a day-to-day basis. This constant interaction with people cultivated new relationships and provided networking opportunities that I did not expect from the position. As a dean’s page, I was able to build my professional skill set and improve my time management, while passionately representing the Wilson College of Textiles and Pack family.
What did you take away from the Dean’s Page Program that helped you in your current position?
One of the biggest takeaways from working as a dean’s page is to look for opportunities in everything that comes your way. Whether that involves a new relationship, task or idea, I quickly realized that opportunities will not always come around a second time or wait for you. So even if something is not your first choice, it may lead to unexpected surprises! As a dental student, I take this same approach when presented with a unique opportunity. This outlook has given me the opportunity to serve as a class representative in the dental student council, participate in interdisciplinary health sessions to provide medical students a foundational knowledge on performing head and neck exams, research projects with prosthodontic faculty. I’m thrilled to continue my dental education knowing that such experiences have only just begun.
What advice do you have for those who are new dean’s pages or interested in becoming one?
My two cents for anyone considering being a dean’s page is that this is without a doubt a unique experience that will positively reinforce why you chose to be a student at NC State and Wilson College of Textiles. Getting to interact with Dean Hinks and the rest of the Wilson College staff on such a personal level is exciting because you get to serve as a direct student voice. For current pages, I advise you to seek out every opportunity you can and if you have an idea, let it be heard!
What is the funniest time or most interesting experience you had as a dean’s page?
One interesting experience was when Wilson College was in the process of implementing its new strategic plan. I was chosen to help showcase some student events and activities that occur on a daily basis around Wilson’s campus. I was then featured on the strategic plan pamphlet that was released, and it felt like my very own ‘15 minutes of fame’!