Kretschmar joins Destination Dentistry
Published: Thursday, August 8th, 2013
While Dr. Rebecca Kretschmar may be new to the Custer community, she’s finally home.
“I always knew Utah wasn’t my place to be. It just never felt like home,” she said. “I love the Black Hills. Since I’ve been here for a while, I feel like I’ve finally found my home.”
Kretschmar was born in Georgia before her family relocated to Montana, where she was raised until she was 6. She and her mother moved to Utah, where she grew up.
At a young age, Kretschmar knew she wanted to be a doctor, so she studied nutrition at the University of Utah.
“I was raised by a single mother, we were a low-income family and everyone struggled with dental health,” she said. “My mom was missing her two front teeth and struggled with confidence. I saw how much of a struggle it was and wanted to do something. I always wanted to be a doctor, so why not do this?”
Before graduation, Kretschmar shadowed area dentists and realized she wouldn’t be satisfied going into a nutrition career. Then and there, Kretschmar decided she would be a dentist and started applying for dental schools.
“At the time, there were no dental schools in Utah,” she said. “I wanted to see what else was out there, so I applied for dental schools in California.”
Kretschmar got into her top choice, University of the Pacific in San Francisco, Calif., where she spent three years earning her degree and graduated as valedictorian from her 143-person class.
“Dentistry has been a super rewarding career,” she said. “I changed my mom’s smile from toothless and scared to date to a bombshell. She looks so good. Just to be able to do that to help my family and other people in general, that is quite amazing.”
But even after graduating from dental school, she still wanted to learn more. While dentists are not required to have a residency, Kretschmar had a passion to further her education.
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