Student Loans

Your Student Loan Journey

As you grow from the classroom to your first office, Crest® + Oral-B® are here to support your aspirations with information and education.

Whether you’re just beginning your journey or you’re about to graduate, it’s important to understand your student loan finances. That’s why we asked trusted dental professionals how they’ve managed their student loans.

Plan your path ahead with the facts using this infographic from Crest + Oral-B.
VIEW JOURNEY
REAL EXPERIENCES FROM REAL DENTAL PROFESSIONALS
Martelle Coke RDH

MARTELLE COKE, RDH

“In May 2012, | completed my AAS in dental hygiene. As a first-generation college student with a 2-year-old baby, I wasn’t prepared for the cost of hygiene school. | took out subsidized and unsubsidized student loans for school and my living expenses. My main piece of advice to dental students would be to work your network and find a mentor—a "big sister" or “big brother" in hygiene school—and ask their advice. Find a student loan counselor. Understand your options when it’s time to repay, the grace period before repayment begins, and how to refinance your student loans."

“Today, | help dental hygiene students with their loans through BrownGirl, RDH, a nonprofit organization that offers scholarships and support to remove cultural and economic barriers to joining the dental hygiene field.”

Jordan Brown DDS

JORDAN BROWN, DDS

“| graduated from Morehouse College with a BS in biology and later attended the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. | distinguished myself in dental school by being the only student in my class to be selected for the highly competitive National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program (NHSC SP). In this program, | committed to practicing in underserved communities that have a severe limitation in their ability to access dental care. When students hear “underserved communities,” they may think of a place that’s far from a major city. But that isn’t always true. By participating in this program, students can avoid taking out student loans by committing to 2 years of serving these communities."

“| would encourage students to look into programs like the NHSC SP as an alternative to student loans. | created an educational eBook series on the subject called Plaque Masters Academy.”

REAL EXPERIENCES FROM REAL DENTAL PROFESSIONALS
Martelle Coke RDH

Q: WHAT IS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH STUDENT LOANS?

A: “| wasn't prepared for the hidden costs of hygiene school: books, your uniform, your boards. | took out subsidized and unsubsidized student loans for school and my living expenses. If | could do it again, | would have done better research on what it means to take out a subsidized loan vs an unsubsidized loan.” — Martelle Coke, RDH

Jordan Brown DDS

Q: WHAT TIPS DO YOU HAVE FOR STUDENTS AND RECENT GRADUATES ON MANAGING THEIR STUDENT LOANS?

A: “Paying back loans is just like a diet—there’s no one-size-fits-all diet. | recommend working with a student loan counselor and creating a budget. Cut back where you can. Live with a roommate, if you can.” — Jordan Brown, DDS

Martelle Coke RDH

Q: WHAT SHOULD STUDENTS DO IF THEY’RE WORRIED ABOUT AFFORDING THEIR PAYMENTS?

A: “If you’re worried about repayment, it’s important to understand your options, like the grace period before repayment begins or refinancing your loans.” — Martelle Coke, RDH

Jordan Brown DDS
A: “The National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program is a federally funded program that awards scholarships to students pursuing careers in dentistry and medicine. This is how I paid for school. You are awarded a scholarship in exchange for practicing dentistry after graduation in an underserved community, which may be closer to where you want to live than you may think. Many major cities have underserved communities.” - Jordan Brown, DDS
Martelle Coke RDH

Q: WHAT’S SOMETHING THAT STUDENTS MAY NOT REALIZE ABOUT STUDENT LOANS?

A: “A lot of hygienists are paid hourly without benefits or a 401(k) plan. A higher hourly wage may seem better, but without benefits, that can catch up to you. It’s easier to save when you have benefits and a retirement plan with a 401(k) in place.” — Martelle Coke, RDH

Jordan Brown DDS
A: “Practice ownership can allow you to eliminate debt faster. | know a dentist who was able to eliminate a majority of their student loans after one year of practice ownership. You do not need an MBA to operate a dental practice if you invest in finding mentors to guide you through the process.” — Jordan Brown, DDS

Want to hear more from Martelle Coke, RDH and Jordan Brown, DDS?

RESOURCES
Remember… Crest + Oral-B want to support you as you continue your education and commitment to making more patients smile.
Keep your student loan borrowing information in one electronic file.
Keep all your student loan borrowing in one electronic file, so you can see the impact of additional borrowing every time you take out more loans.
Choose a repayment strategy.
Choose a repayment strategy based on your debt, your repayment objectives, and your career plans, including any plans for advanced dental education, whether academic based title or hospital based.
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