Lindsey Shields is currently a dental assistant student at Ross, and she was nominated as a GEM for her perseverance and dedication. She has achieved a 4.0 in every module and she is always super engaging in the classroom. Her teachers never have to ask her to participate. Even though she has a job, she still comes to class everyday and studies every night. Moreover, she always helps her classmates out of the kindness of her heart. She is respectful to everyone, and she has a super positive attitude that is magnetic. She impresses everyone with her knowledge and desire to become the best version of herself.
We had the chance to get to know Lindsey and learn more about her.
Here is what she had to say:
Tell me a little bit about yourself.
My name is Lindsey Marie Shields, and I am 20 years old. I’m currently studying dental assisting at Ross. I was born in Sevierville, Tennessee. I was a cheerleader my entire life up until senior year of high school. I’ve always loved kids and I have a passion for working with them. I’d consider myself an outdoors person. I love being outside as much as possible. The mountains are my safe place. I spent half of my life in Fairhope, Alabama, so my favorite place to run away for a vacation is Gulf Shores, Alabama. But, you’ll never catch me without my little brother, Jordan, who is just a year younger than me. He is by my side at all times.
What led you to Ross? Have you always been in healthcare or was Ross your first exposure to healthcare?
The same person who leads me to everything, my brother. Throughout all my years in high school, I never really knew what I wanted to do for a career. Even after I graduated and started working some jobs, I still didn’t know what I wanted to do. Then, two years later, my brother went to the dentist and afterwards called me to tell me how it went. He was telling me that he talked to his dental assistant, who happened to be my age, and said how fun it sounded and how he thinks it could be something I might like. So a few months went by and one day I googled how to be a dental assistant and it brought me to Ross. Now I’m almost halfway done and I absolutely love it. It wasn’t one of those situations where I found dentistry, but more so, dentistry found me. Also, for once in my life, I don’t feel stuck or lost. I’m grateful for my brother’s confidence in me. He really motivated and encouraged me to keep going, even though I couldn’t see it in myself at the time. I truly never thought I would be doing this, but here I am.
How has your experience at Ross been so far? Do you have any memorable experiences or moments?
My experience at Ross so far has been better than imaginable. I was scared at first, especially being a new student, but the first day I was welcomed as if I had been there for months. For me, the biggest concern I had was the teachers, however, I quickly found that I had nothing to worry about. I am beyond grateful for how amazing my teacher has been. The staff are always giving recognition and congratulating all accomplishments. They really do care and they show you that.
What are some important lessons that you’ve learned so far?
One of the biggest lessons I have learned so far is that no matter how hard things may get, keep going. Never give up because you don’t know just how pretty the rainbow could be on the other side of the storm. So it’s important to never lose faith or hope.
Has anybody inspired you along the way?
My biggest inspirations along the way have always been my brother and my grandma. My grandma helped raise my brother and I for the most part so she means everything to us. Me and my brother actually have matching tattoos of her name. My brother is my backbone throughout life. We’ve always been really close. He is my best friend and that will never change. We have each other’s back no matter what, and at the end of the day I know that he will be by my side in a heartbeat if I need him. He is my other half and he is the reason I want to be a better person everyday. He makes me want to strive for more and to be better than the day before. I have a tattoo for him that says “my purpose” and he has one for me that says “my reason” and I don’t think anything describes our relationship any better, because he truly is my purpose in everything that I do.
What advice would you give to students who want to pursue a similar path as you? The advice I would give to students who want to pursue the same career is to always be the best version of yourself at all times. No matter what, always give 100%. This includes showing up to class everyday, making sure you turn your work in on time, playing the professional role, and always studying for tests to get the best grades you can. Be the best student you can be! I think the key to success in school is genuinely having an interest in what you are learning.
What are a few things that you wish you knew before going into the medical field? Something I wish I would’ve known before going into the dental field? Truthfully, I wasn’t 100% sure dental assisting was going to be something I wanted to do until I started learning about it. So
I can’t say that there was anything that I wish I would have known before I went into the dental field.
What achievements are you proud of?
I am proud that I am able to show my brother and anyone else that may have once been in the same position as me, that you won’t always be lost. There is light at the end of the tunnel. What I’m most proud of is being able to hand my brother my “4.0 GPA” certificates after every mod. He is the only person who stood by my side when I felt lost. He helped me find myself when I couldn’t do it on my own, and for that, all my accomplishments are for him!
What advice would you give your younger self?
The advice I would give to my younger self is to never give up. No matter the dream or goal, do whatever it takes to get there. Just take the risk to make sacrifices and don’t be afraid to fail. You can do anything you put your mind to as long as you want it bad enough. Don’t let anybody tell you what you can or can’t do. It is possible to turn your dreams into reality, and it’s impossible to have a dream too big for your accomplishment.
A fun fact about you.
A fun fact about me: I have a tattoo for my dog Gypsy. She saved me at times where I wasn’t sure I could be saved. She passed away two years ago and there hasn’t been a single day that has passed where she wasn’t on my mind. I miss her every second of every day. Just the thought of her is hard to bear.
What is something you feel proud about?
The greatest decision I ever made in life was choosing to turn my life over to God.