If you asked little Nav what she wanted to be when she grew up, a Dental Hygienist was probably nowhere on that list, mostly because she had no idea what that was. A professional NASCAR driver was #1 on that list, followed by a news reporter for ABC7, and a Bollywood actress. So how did I stumble upon the rewarding profession of Dental Hygiene? It all started with my lovely inspirational mother! Bored of clocking in 9-5 at a boring retail store, she decided, at the age of 36, that it was time to go back to school to provide a better future for her two children. She went New York School for Medical and Dental Assistants and became a dental assistant by the time I was 10. Through middle school and high school and even my first year at Queens College, my heart was not set on a definite route of where I wanted to take my life. All I knew was that no matter what I did, I wanted to be happy and stress-free! During my 6-month recare dental hygiene appointment at the office my mother worked at, the hygienist (who graduated from City Tech’s Dental Hygiene Program) asked me what I was studying in college. I explained that I still had no idea, that I was taking whatever classes for now still trying to figure out what made my heart happy. She told me about dental hygiene as a profession, how she had a flexible schedule, she enjoyed waking up and going to work every day, and most importantly she was happy. She allowed me to shadow her for the rest of her appointments that day. I saw an older woman who was very grumpy and did not smile once while she was sitting in the waiting room. After the hygienist was done with her appointment, she smiled and the whole room lit up. This was when I realized the power that dental hygiene had on people. It improved their self-confidence and made them smile ear to ear. I was sold. I went home that night and looked up everything there was to know about dental hygiene. I transferred to city tech and took all of the prerequisites. The day I received the acceptance letter into the dental hygiene program, I was on jury duty. My mother texted me a picture of the acceptance letter and the terrible-ness of jury duty was instantly turned into an optimistic day. My life has been a roller coaster since then, balancing the many ups and downs of dental hygiene school, along with life’s many turns and twists. I must say, I wouldn’t have my life any other way. I am forever grateful for the last two years: for the skills I’ve learned, the many life-touching connections with patients I’ve encountered and the lifelong friends and memories I’ve made. Thank you, everyone, who played a role in my journey. I am happy.