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News > Collegians > Holly Ho is helping people smile

Holly Ho is helping people smile

Dentist and Collegian Holly Ho (Harington Day | Fitchett 2011 - 2013) has always been drawn to people’s smiles.
Holly Ho (right) at work, helping people smile
Holly Ho (right) at work, helping people smile

Holly Ho (Harington Day | Fitchett 2011 - 2013) has always been drawn to people’s smiles. Now as a registered Dentist on the Gold Coast, Australia, she is fulfilling her dream of helping people feel confident to smile.

“I loved art at high school but also liked the sciences,” she says. “Dentistry is a unique blend of art and science, where the skill of a dentist to do procedures such as shaping and contouring teeth is a form of artistry, all with the goal of helping people improve oral health. It’s a great combination for me.”

Being a dentist comes with its own set of challenges, but it is also incredibly rewarding. In her daily work, Holly encounters common apprehensions from people visiting the dentist’s office. “Sometimes the first thing a client says is, ‘I absolutely hate the Dentist.’” An essential part of her work is to create a welcoming environment and help people overcome those fears. “It’s important to me to show them that a dental visit doesn’t have to be a scary experience.”

During her school years, Holly was involved in the musical production, chapel band, chess club, hockey and the choir. She fondly remembers her time in the 2012 school production of Les Misérables. “It was an unforgettable experience filled with laughter, growth, and incredible memories.” Mr Francis Cowan (music teacher), Mr Ian Campbell (singing teacher) and Mr Nick Clothier (drama teacher) passionately guided us as we poured our hearts into practicing and perfecting our performances. It was a testament to the power of teamwork and dedication.”

Holly’s adventurous spirit provided her with an eye-opening experience of volunteering for an outreach programme in a remote region of Nepal. There she partnered with local Nepalese dentists to provide free dental treatment to those in need. She also visited schools and provided oral health education to children. This rewarding experience further prompted her to become an ambassador for dental volunteering in Nepal and later, another volunteering program which provided free dental care to a remote region in Australia.

Her academic commitment earned her recognition, including three prestigious awards at the final Dentistry prize-giving ceremony. She received ‘The Australian and New Zealand Society of Paediatric Dentistry award for highest mark in paediatric dentistry over the course of the degree’; ‘The Australian Society of Orthodontists Queensland branch prize award for highest mark in orthodontics over the course of the degree’; and ‘The Head of School Commendation for Academic Excellence’.

Finding a balance in life is key to Holly. She emphasised the significance of embracing the passions we develop during high school and continue to nurture them throughout our professional lives. Despite the demanding nature of her work, Holly continues to pursue her passion for music within her church community where she aspires to grow as a worship singer. She recently visited St Paul’s to catch up with staff who had guided her during her time here and she is excited to reconnect with peers at the ten-year reunion in April.

Her advice to her 18-year-old self echoes a sentiment of faith and resilience.

I would tell myself to study hard but not worry so much,” she says. “Trust in the Lord and have faith in His plans for your life. Make the most of your time at St Paul’s. Treasure the safe and nurturing space St Paul’s provides to learn, grow, and ask questions.

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