Gerald O’Connor shares how his experience at simplyendo has allowed him to reach his professional goals

In 2013, I was working as a GDP in the UK when I decided to return to Ireland with my family. I took a hiatus for two years before setting up my new practice and, once I did, I realised I wanted to make my clinical practice more niche.

I always had a love and a draw towards endodontics in general dentistry and the fastidiousness to achieve the ideal outcome – I enjoy using a microscope – and I’ve sometimes viewed endodontists as miracle workers, so that’s why I decided to undertake a post-graduate endo course.

Due to family and work commitments I needed to take a part-time course rather than a full-time university one. In addition, I was looking for one with an academic end point that would give me the qualification and training required to allow me to eventually develop a referral-based clinic.

I started to look around for options, of which there were many, I asked for recommendations from other dentists online and in Facebook groups and one name kept popping up, which was simplyendo. I felt like the gods were conspiring to draw me back to my childhood football team of Liverpool, but now I know it was Mike subliminally messaging me from Formby – endodontic wizards can obviously do that! I ended up choosing simplyendo and I’ve never looked back.

Thoroughly enjoyable

Everything about the course has been enjoyable; there’s an enthusiasm from everybody on the simplyendo team that’s very infectious. This helps us as students to think about things more, which makes for some memorable and animated debates.

Meeting new peers and colleagues on the course is also enlightening, I had the opportunity to meet people of all ages and walks of life, from every avenue of dentistry, which had a much untold benefit. It’s refreshing to be able to meet others and chew the fat because our profession can be quite isolating at times. The community spirit I found at simplyendo was another facet that made it thoroughly enjoyable – it’s a more mature college experience without any of the hangovers!

There is a wealth and breadth of knowledge that I’ve never seen elsewhere. I really enjoyed the lectures, the teaching modalities are very informative and they use up-to-date literature as evidence underpinning the endodontic principles that they advocate and follow.

The hands-on sessions are exemplary – I have been able to try every filing system available, which is invaluable for developing the level of learning that you can actually use in practice.

I’m also a tremendous fan of the Victoria sponge!

Enhanced clinical confidence

Many post-graduate courses are often very esoteric and don’t provide many of the practical skills that are required. However, from day one with simplyendo I brought the knowledge and practical skills back to my practice where they translated into my day-to-day routine immediately.

I found what I was learning to be very useful straight away. Their simplified protocols made my endo more predictable and with that comes that increased level of confidence to take on more complex cases.

I’m now more certain of my diagnosis and treatment plans, and even with the more complex cases I know Mike and the team are just an email away to give advice, guidance and encouragement to take them on. The simplyendo team have instilled within me the confidence of knowing what’s needed to be done and, more importantly, the ability to do it.

I’ve been with simplyendo for two years now and within that time I’ve seen my scope of expertise dramatically increase. My results are more predictable and I have more satisfied patients. To top things off, I have even started receiving unsolicited referrals from colleagues now, which I guess is the marker of professional improvement. Everything I wanted from this course has absolutely fallen into place.

Considering taking the course? Here are Gerald’s top tips…

• Buy loupes and/or a scope if you can afford it
• Speak to Louise and the team at simplyendo
• Download Mendeley software for your articles
• Sign up to the Journal of Endodontics
• Develop an interest in planes an aeronautics to impress Mike at simplyendo
• Arrive early for snacks, the pain au chocolate is not to be missed!

First class

I have no hesitation recommending the simplyendo team.

The facilities are first class and their enthusiasm and passion for endodontics is absolutely genuine, as is their care for the experience and learning that you are receiving. Louise and the staff are very calming and supportive, and they are genuinely interested in your career pathway and helping you to achieve your goals.

I don’t think I’ve ever met people who are so efficient and generous with their time than the team at simplyendo, and it truly comes from the heart. It’s very refreshing!

There’s a tangible divide on some courses between academia and wet-handed dentistry , but this is broken down with simplyendo. It’s nice to immerse yourself in the welcoming and approachable atmosphere they create without the sense of stuffiness that sometimes pervades the academic world. However, their friendliness doesn’t take away from the seriousness of learning – they strike the perfect balance between professional integrity and academic principles.

Whatever you want from your endo learning they have it all – you can do as much or as little as you like and I found that, as a working dentist with a family, I was able to easily fit this course into my life – I really don’t think there’s a better one available.

Postgraduate Certificate

Year 1 of the MSc in Endodontology. An additional 6 days of study, perfecting everything you have learned from the 10 day programme to OSCE standards.

Postgraduate Diploma

Year 2 of the MSc in Endodontology. 12 days of studying advanced topics such endodontic microscopy, innovations in endodontics, research methods and statistics.

MSc in Endodontology

Year 3 of the MSc in Endodontology and the final component for the Masters Degree. You’re given approximately 12 months to submit a dissertation based on an endodontic topic of your choosing. You’ll be appointed a personal supervisor to who will provide 1:1 coaching.