|As part of their degree programme, fourth year IMU dental students are required to complete a research project under the Special Study Module. Completing and writing up the research project was not an easy task as every one of us had zero experience in this. My research partner and I faced many challenges along the way but we managed to overcome it by helping each other with the valuable input from both our research supervisors, Dr Ranjeet Ajit Bapat and Dr Sham Kishor. For this, I would like to express my gratitude my supervisors and the other lecturers for their guidance throughout this journey and I would especially like to thank Sugunadevi, my research partner for her assistance, guidance and cooperation.
After all the hard work towards the completion of this research, I wanted the opportunity to present and share our research findings. To achieve this, I entered the APDSA Scientific Research Competition (SRC) and was shortlisted among 15 finalists to present our research in the competition.
In achieving this, I believe that my learning experience in IMU has really helped in preparing me for this presentation. At the University, there are many student-led activities where students are given opportunities to present in class and that is where I am able to practice and improve my presentation skills. Besides that, I had also previously attended other dental conferences where one of my aims was to observe and learn from other speakers on how to present a paper. At the conference, I paid special attention to the quality of presentations that caught my attention. It was then that I realised that the presentation can make a difference even though the topic appears boring. So, based on what I have observed and learnt before, for my presentation at the APDSA Scientific Research Competition, I tried to make my topic interesting and easy to understand. As part of my preparation for the presentation, I read as many articles as I could in relation to my research topic so that I would be very familiar with it. I also tried to understand how my research would make an impact clinically. This had really helped me during the Q&A session of the research competition when I was asked some very challenging questions. Thanks to my hard work before the competition, I managed to pull through this difficult part of the competition. I was thrilled to be the winner of this competition and as the winner, I secured a scholarship to attend the International Dental Exhibition and Meeting (IDEM) in Singapore next year. Throughout my life, I have always felt that I have stage fright but the experience of presenting at this competition has helped me overcome this a little. The whole experience of presenting at an international conference was a wonderful journey and an invaluable lesson for me. Society grows through research. This could be the beginning of my research journey. I truly believe the world can be a better place if we can create impactful research. Winning the competition is a bonus. The most important thing is that I enjoyed the learning experience and journey. I would therefore like to encourage all students to gain the exposure that I got by presenting their research in conferences.