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We Can't Help But Smile with Excitement for Heewon Yang

It’s joyful. It connects people. And it’s a big part of 18-year-old Heewon Yang’s future.

“I think smiling is one of the most beautiful expressions a person can make. I love making people smile, and I want to help people feel confident in their smile.”

Heewon always knew she wanted to go into the medical field, but was never quite sure in what specialty. It wasn’t until she enrolled in the Career and Technical Education Center (CTEC) that she found her calling in dentistry.

Heewon participates in CTEC’s dental assistant program, and loves all the hands-on learning in the school’s fully outfitted dental classroom. Just a few weeks ago, she earned her dental assistant certification, and it’s helping her get one step closer to her goal.

“I want to go to dental school after this and become an endodontist. I thought the dental assistant program here would be a good stepping stone for that.”

In addition to taking classes at CTEC, she is a student in the STEM Academy at LEE High School. She is graduating next month with a 100+ grade point average, and after receiving several acceptance letters, is still narrowing down her college of choice.

One thing is for sure. She wants to make a difference. In addition to taking care of her patients’ smiles, she wants to remove barriers to good dental care. Her personal experience helped inspire this.

“One of my goals is to make dental health care more affordable for lower-income families. I come from a lower-income family, so it’s been difficult for my family to afford healthcare. And I think taking care of your smile and getting that dental treatment is so important.”

Heewon credits her teachers and the innovative programs at North East ISD for getting her this far. But had it not been for a friend who enrolled in the medical assistant program at CTEC, she might not have ever learned about the different programs. Now, all she wants to do is get the word out about how amazing it is.

“I’m just super grateful that I found CTEC.  A lot of students don’t know about it. I found out about it through a friend. I’m letting my friends know more about it, especially incoming students. Because I think it is a great program. I am so glad that I got this.”

Congratulations, Heewon and all our other 2021 graduates!

Posted by Kristina Perez
April 8, 2021