Interview series: Anuya’s ITI Scholarship experience

Anuya Patankar
ITI Scholarship interview

Every year in June, the ITI opens the application portal for its Scholarships. We took this opportunity to ask one of our previous Scholars, Anuya Patankar from India, about her experience, her daily work and what she liked the most about it. She spent her Scholarship year from September 2019-2020 at the ITI Scholarship Center in London, United Kingdom.

What are the three most memorable things you will take away from your Scholarship year?

The 3 most memorable things from the ITI Scholarship year were:

  1. Spending a year full of work and play in one of the most magical cities of the world was indeed a dream come true
  2. Like-minded colleagues and friends, a wonderful mentor in Prof Shahdad and a highly inspiring work environment
  3. It was a challenging year, both personally and professionally. With the pandemic raging, being away from family and friends, the initial days were tough. What made the year memorable for me was learning to adapt to the new normal. I think the entire experience has made me a better person and has shaped me to face bigger challenges in life.

Could you give us an idea of how your working week was structured?

The working week at QMUL was a mixture of clinical and research activities. The ITI Scholarship program at the Center is very closely associated with the post-graduate prosthodontics and periodontics training program. Hence a lot of lectures, clinics and demonstrations are with the trainees at the hospital. As an ITI Scholar, I had clinical sessions 3 days of the week and the other 2 days were dedicated to administration and research.

Why did you choose this specific Scholarship Center?

I chose the Scholarship Center at QMUL, London as I had attended a talk by Prof Shahdad at the ITI India Congress during my post-graduate training days and was very impressed by the multi-disciplinary treatment approaches adopted by the team here at QMUL. This was very much along the lines of the training I had received from my post-graduate mentor and guide, who is also an ITI Fellow. Another reason was that the program was in English, which is my primary language.

Did you get enough support to do your job well? 

Yes, I got lots of support. Prof Shahdad and his entire team were very approachable at all times.

Do you feel you learned a lot?

Yes, I can definitely say I learned a lot in the limited time that I got with the pandemic. I think I can say that I made the most of the opportunities that were presented to me. I managed to do a few clinical cases and was a part of a few research projects as well.

In which ways did the pandemic affect your year abroad?

It was a tough year, both personally and professionally. Being away from family and friends in a foreign country was tough initially, but it soon got better. The dental hospital at London was shut for a period of almost 3 months and re-opened only for emergencies. Elective dental work only started towards the end of the Scholarship year.

Why would you recommend our Scholarship program to other young professionals

The ITI Scholarship program is one of a kind. In the Scholarship year, as a young professional at the very beginning of your career, you get to spend an incredible year abroad, learning from the best in the field. It was a turning point in my career, and I am sure that it will definitely be an inspiration to any young professional who decides to pursue the Scholarship.

Each year we enable young implant dentistry talent to spend a year abroad at a highly regarded university being mentored by an ITI Fellow at one of our 32 ITI Scholarship Centers around the globe. Are you keen on getting insight into every aspect of implant treatment? Would you like to dive into the complex world of case planning, implant surgery and prosthetic restorations in an international context? Our application portal is open from June 1 to June 30. Don’t hesitate any longer and apply now!

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Anuya Patankar
Anuya Patankar
Anuya Patankar, MDS, graduated in dentistry from the prestigious Nair Hospital Dental College, Mumbai in 2014. In 2018, she completed her masters in Prosthodontics and Implantology from the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences, India. From 2019-2020, she spent her ITI Scholarship year at the Royal London Dental Hospital and Queen Mary University, London. Anuya Patankar currently works in a private practice in Mumbai, India, and extensively deals with implantology and prosthodontics.
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