Nozrin Laskar '14 - Religion Major and Dentist-in-Training

Photo by Gina Eide

Humanities: Knowledge for the human side of healthcare.

"Dentistry is a social career. It's a career where you are a service to your community -- you interact with everyone, of all backgrounds and walks of life. So you need to be culturally sensitive."

-- Nozrin Laskar '14, majors in Molecular Biology and Religion, minor in Chemistry

Nozrin Laskar '14 is heading to NYU's College of Dentistry this fall. She has a solid footing in the sciences with a background in Molecular Biology, Chemistry, and Biomedical Sciences from Rutgers University (MS program) and Montclair State. But she's also ready for the interpersonal side of the field thanks to a major in the humanities.

In addition to her Molecular Biology major and Chemistry minor, she added a second major, in Religion, once she got to Montclair State.

The breadth of knowledge will make her a better dentist, she says. "Dentistry is a social career. It's a career where you are a service to your community -- you interact with everyone, of all backgrounds and walks of life. So you need to be culturally sensitive."

The coursework in Religion broadened her mind and she found it fascinating. "Religion penetrates every aspect of human culture," she said. It "has always played a crucial role in history. Its fundamental role has existed in all civilizations, and it helps us understand people and their behavior."

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The humanities worked in tandem with the scientific studies. "My background in Religion trained me to be an independent thinker and allowed me to philosophically appreciate my scientific knowledge,” she said.

Peak experiences
While she said she enjoyed all her classes, she especially enjoyed courses such as Jewish Spirituality, as well as Mysticism and Spirituality, and Religious Experience. Memorable faculty members include David Benfield, Mark Clatterbuck, Michael Kogan, and Lise Vail.

Would you recommend becoming a Religion major?
Laskar recommends majoring in Religion, saying "it truly educates you to be a global citizen... You will open your mind and understand society's challenges in a new and unique way..." It's a time to "ask questions, be respectful of others, and broaden your scope of thinking."

Why Montclair State?
Laskar grew up in Clifton so Montclair State was a convenient and logical choice. Plus her sister, now a registered nurse, studied at Montclair State and majored in Religion and minored in History.

In the end, the University was a good fit and paved the way for success in a career of science and human interaction. "Truth be told, I have grown and discovered a part of myself as a student at Montclair State," she said.