Ryan Beelman - Waterloo, Ill.
Ryan Beelman has seen quite a bit of success in his college career at SIUE-he won a major academic award during each year of his undergraduate education and maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout.
For Ryan, however, his proudest moment to date hasn't been accepting an award, or seeing "Summa Cum Laude" on his undergraduate diploma, it was getting accepted and making the smooth transition to dental school at the SIU School of Dental Medicine.
"After just three years of undergraduate education, I was able to go right into dental medicine studies through the BS/DMD program," said Ryan. "I looked at other schools, but I didn't find anything that allowed such an easy transition.
At SIUE, this seven-year program is built specifically for students who want a fast track to completion of dental school. Ryan and his classmates were able to take advantage of all the benefits of an excellent undergraduate experience, while staying one step ahead on their way to the School of Dental Medicine.
Although he is happy to be in dental school, Ryan speaks nostalgically about his time as an undergrad at SIUE.
"Campus life was really fun, with events like soccer and basketball games and intramural sports. There was never a dull moment."
He calls SIUE's campus "beautiful and welcoming," and he says that the whole environment made him feel safe and at home. After considering other schools that may have been bigger or further away from his hometown of Waterloo, Ill., Ryan is happy with his decision to call SIUE home for both his undergraduate degree and dental education.
"College has been an excellent time for meeting new people and having a lot of fun, all the while making the first step toward meeting my goals for my future."
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