Starting a new job is a massive challenge for anyone, but starting a new job in a new country is even more challenging still – especially when the first language is not your own! After qualifying in Tartu, Estonia in 2003, Maryana Milerman moved to London in 2005, where she began working as an Associate. Though when she first moved to London she didn’t know anyone, and struggled to find her feet in the local dental community, a colleague invited her to attend a meeting held by the Alpha Omega London Chapter.
“I graduated from dental school in Estonia in 2003 and moved to London a few years later. I now work at City Smile Dental Practice, Hackney,” says Maryana. “During the course of my work I met a dentist who was a member of Alpha Omega, and he invited me to come along to one of their regular meetings. I can’t really say one thing in particular attracted me to attend – it was everything really: to make new friends; find some connections; to learn more about dentistry in the UK; to meet other dentists. It’s strange to think that when I moved to the UK I didn’t know anybody at all! I didn’t even know what the NHS was or how it worked, so I was looking for people to help explain it all really as when I first came over here, nothing seemed to make sense!
“It was just so nice to become part of a community of people who all do their best to look out for one another. Everyone I met at Alpha Omega tried to help me and explain different things to me. A few of the members even pointed me to the Eastman to do some postgraduate study, which they said was very good, so I went to study there and improve my understanding of dentistry further still. I even met some Alpha Omega members there who were working as tutors!”
As well as lecture evenings, Alpha Omega also organises a number of other events throughout the year. These include the annual Annenberg Lecture day, as well as trips to conferences and social events held overseas.
“The social side to Alpha Omega is very important to me,” says Maryana. “I have already been to Israel to take part in the Jerusalem Conference. Whilst we were there we visited The Hebrew University: School of Dental Medicine, Hadassah – Ein Kerem Campus, attended a conference day, and took part in an exhausting social programme. I really enjoyed the trip, my first with Alpha Omega.”
All in all, Maryana is delighted to have discovered Alpha Omega, and is looking forward to continuing her membership for many years to come.
“Alpha Omega is such a great resource, I recommend it to anyone,” continues Maryana. “It’s a fantastic pool of information for any dentist. With so many highly skilled, knowledgeable dentists a part of the group, it’s very easy to get answers to your questions, and get second opinions on difficult cases. The strength of the community is another important factor for me. It’s nice to have things in common with fellow members, and you know that everyone is always looking out for one another. All in all it’s a really nice organisation to be a part of.”
For more information on the Alpha Omega London Chapter, visit www.alphaomegauk.co.uk