In 2015 upon receiving an offer to study dentistry at university, Yewande uploaded her first YouTube video, explaining her journey into dental school. She never intended to start YouTube fully, rather had the aim of helping aspiring dentistry students through her experience. Her channel soon escalated into a lifestyle, offering knowledge and advice concerning the field of dentistry and gaining popularity from aspiring students and the general public. This is the story of Yewande, a dentist who expresses her passion through her creative skills in graphic design and video editing.
It was not until after her first year of dental school that Yewande decided to continue posting videos offering tips and advice on dentistry. She describes her motive as “to inspire people who may have been in a difficult situation or who didn’t get in the first time.” Aware of the difficulty of applying to dental school, she wished to reassure people who were like her. She particularly emphasises the importance of sharing your failures and often receives messages of praise from students explaining how through the videos they decided to try again and not give up on their path to dental school.
Attending a Dental Elective in Ghana prompted Yewande to take video editing and her YouTube platform seriously. It was there that she built a passion for educating the public about oral hygiene after learning things that most everyday people were not aware of. She mentions an example of how one should not rinse their mouth out with water after brushing their teeth as the fluoride in the toothpaste is what helps strengthen the enamel.
So what exactly does Yewande’s channel revolve around? It consists of a combination of advice to dental students and oral health education. Why exactly did she start posting consistently? It was her desire to educate and empower an audience and to encourage the younger generation through her platform.
A career could in some cases be well thought out and something that you have dreamt of becoming your entire life. But in Yewande’s case, growing up in a single-parent home with no dentists in the family given that her mum worked as a hairdresser, her interest in dentistry was very much unexpected. Her first encounter with the field of dentistry was through research. Nevertheless, she knew that she wanted to pursue a career within the healthcare sector as she enjoyed studying science, particularly biology. She was interested in working with others, communicating and working in a hands on profession. Searching for work experience was a demoralising experience for Yewande. Receiving a countless number of ‘no”s’ for the very requirement needed on her personal statement was challenging. Despite this, her perseverance persisted and eventually, after about 30 to 40 emails she finally received an opportunity to do work experience at a dental practice that was a two-hour journey away from her home. It was this work experience that confirmed her decision to pursue dentistry.
In pursuing her career in dentistry, Yewande has often branched out through her use of creativity. As a creative person who enjoys making videos and posting content, she could showcase her creativity on the popular app Instagram. She taught herself skills in graphic design and film editing enabling her to offer knowledge and advice regarding dentistry through creativity.
Whilst university is an enriching experience, it tends to affect those who are simultaneously working in the creative industry. I was intrigued to find out whether her university experience at Plymouth had an impact on her output of creative content. She explained that she found it difficult to balance her studies with YouTube, hence she took a break. Her main goal was to prevent anything from getting in the way of her path to obtaining her degree. She experienced nightmares of her failing university so she decided to take a break from YouTube and focus on studying. But she made sure that she did other things outside of academia such as fitness and socialising with friends. She mentions the importance of not merely focusing on studying and rather maintaining a balanced lifestyle at university.
Being a creative in the UK is an experience in itself. I questioned Yewande as to whether or not she believes that UK creatives get the recognition that they deserve. She believes that UK creatives are getting more and more recognition due to the rise of social media. According to Yewande, “the world is starting to appreciate creative talent a lot more than in the past”. Although she still thinks that creatives are quite underappreciated in the UK, for instance, how if one were to tell their parents that they wanted to pursue a creative career, they may not be as supportive due to preconceived beliefs that the field lacks financial security and stability. Further, Yewande debunks the misconception that content creation is simple and expresses her appreciation of all UK creatives. Overall, she believes that UK creatives do not get the recognition they deserve but believes that it will improve as time proceeds.
I asked Yewande about advice she would give to an upcoming creative? She encourages creatives to master their craft and use every opportunity to learn and grow. She assures creatives that even if you are not getting enough recognition, that does not necessarily mean that your content is bad, it takes time to build an audience. The last words of Yewande are as follows – “Do not write yourself off too early and keep on pushing with your content. If I gave up after my first video I would not be where I am today. Believe in yourself and your craft and do not give up.” Quoting Nelson Mandela “In life you never lose you either win or learn” she continues – “Take every loss and failure as a lesson and keep on going. When the going gets tough you have to keep on pushing. To anybody reading this, you have your own individual aspect about you that people love and never take that for granted. Being you is your superpower and don’t try to emulate other people, be authentic to who you are because that is what will take you far.”
Written by: Claudia, founder of Space2Uplift
Interested in following Yewande’s journey?
- Instagram – @dr.yewandedental
- Youtube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/user/YewandeLee
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