Student Spotlight: Elio Boschetti, from Italy to Canada

December 2014

_MG_5586editedElio Boschetti hails from the University of Cagliari, on the Italian island of Sardinia. He has just completed a three month exchange with the Faculty of Dentistry. Brenna Kaukonen, the Faculty Communications Officer, had a chance to sit down with him and talk about his experience in our new facility.

BK – Why did you choose McGill University?
EB – Because McGill University is the best university in Canada for Dentistry and Medicine and probably one of the best in the world! I had also heard from my professors that McGill has great Orthodontics program.
From my prior experiences, I knew that dentistry students don’t usually have the opportunity to properly practise orthodontics during their training at the Dental school. At McGill, this isn’t the case. Every student works a lot with the patients, plans the therapy and carries out the treatment on their patients.


At home I had two really great ortho professors, who’ve helped me learn the profession and been great teachers.

BK – What was the biggest difference between your experience at McGill and at home, in Italy?
EB – Unfortunately, I’ve been here for 3 months only so it’s a really short period to make an objective comparison.
One really big difference is the facilities; here they are state-of-the-art. The new McGill Undergraduate Dental Clinic is literally amazing! The students have the all equipment they need to learn every subject, in the best way. There is so much technology and every station has a computer. As for the professional interaction, I noticed that the relationship between teachers here is less formal than in Italy.

I also found that students here have much more hands on experience. In Italy there is a greater emphasis on theory and students don’t get as much time with the patients.

BK – What will you take away from your time at the Faculty of Dentistry?
EB – My greatest experience here has been working with Dr. Retrouvey and our research team (Tina Imbriglio, Natashia Bose-Roberts, Chloe Fung). Through this experience I learnt how to properly write a scientific article worthy to be published, how to do a literature review and how to collect and manage patient’s data.

I have also greatly improved my ortho knowledge while attending the Dr. Retrouvey lectures and in the Undergraduate Dental Teaching Clinic.

BK – How has your time with the Faculty of Dentistry helped you accomplish your goals?
EB – My time here has helped me accomplish my goals in two ways. The research training I received here will stay with me for my entire career. I’m very glad to have had the opportunity to work with my outstanding research team. Also, the time that I spent in the Undergraduate Dental Training Clinic has given me a lot of hands on practice and helped me feel more confident in my role as dentist.

I’ve met a number of great people and everyone was willing to help me without exception: students, staff, librarian, secretaries and professors. So it was easy for me to learn and accomplish what I came here for.

BK – Do you feel better prepared to move forward in your studies/career because of your experience here?
EB – Definitely! The knowledge I’ve acquired at McGill is precious for me. I’ve learned how to use orthodontic software, software to manage scientific literature, software that helps to elaborate patients’ data and make statistical calculation. I’ve also learnt in detail how one of the most popular orthodontic appliance works, its strengths and also its weakness.

I’ve always loved to work with people that have a different background and knowledge because I think that is extremely stimulating and enriching. Such teamwork is probably the best way to achieve great results. I sincerely hope that in the future I’ll have the opportunity to do research with some people that I met here. It would be great, indeed.

I’m really grateful to Dr. Retrouvey, McGill University and especially my university for making this experience possible.

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One Response to “Student Spotlight: Elio Boschetti, from Italy to Canada”
  1. Diana Pizzuti says:

    Bravo Elio! Great article.
    Best wishes for the new year and hope you and your family enjoy NYC!