Content Dam Diq Online Articles 2018 10 Millennial 1

Millennial dentists are not lazy or entitled

Oct. 22, 2018
While millennials are often unfairly criticized, Dr. Salierno says the criticism is unfounded and explains why they should prove to be a motivated and contributing group to the dental profession.
Chris Salierno, DDS, Chief Editor, Dental Economics

This article originally appeared in the Principles of Practice Management e-newsletter. Subscribe to this informative twice monthly practice management ENL here.

Every now and then I hear more senior dentists make some grand generalizations about new dentists and dental students. These generalizations have included musings about millennials wanting everything handed to them, and how they lack loyalty to their jobs.

I’m not really sure where those opinions come from. I could present some theories but I’d rather not add to the already large pile of baseless opinions about an entire generation. What I can share with you, however, is the significant increase in the number of outreach programs that have appeared in dental schools across the country during the past decade. Students are donating their time—while often paying their own way if they must travel—to provide free dental care around the world, and sometimes they do not receive any credit toward graduation. If millennials were lazy and/or entitled, would they be flocking to these programs?

Check out what our friend Dr. David Rice set up at the igniteDDS 2018 Outreach Program Grants. I think you’ll be inspired by the students’ enthusiasm for helping out those in dire need.

Here’s what else I can say about millennial dentists. The world and our profession are rapidly changing around millennial dentists. Traditional pathways to education, practice, and ownership have drastically changed. I think this generation has upstanding folks who are ready to work hard, their energy is just going to be channeled differently than ours was when we became dentists. It would have to be channeled differently given the current landscape. If their passion for charity is any indication, they’ll be fine additions to our profession.



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About the Author

Chris Salierno, DDS | Chief Editor, Dental Economics

Chris Salierno, DDS, is the chief editor of Dental Economics and the editorial director of the Principles of Practice Management and Group Practice and DSO Digest e-newsletters. He is also a contributing author for DentistryIQ and Perio-Implant Advisory. He lectures and writes about practice management and clinical dentistry. He maintains a blog to answer patient questions at ToothQuest. Dr. Salierno maintains a private general practice in Melville, New York. You may contact him at [email protected].

Updated Dec. 4, 2020