“At SGS, teachers take great pride in watching their pupils succeed. Having somebody fighting my corner and installing confidence in my ability allowed me to thrive.”
Billy Thorley, class of 2014, is a qualified dentist currently completing postgraduate training in Sheffield.
How do you feel SGS helped to shape the person you are today?
At SGS, teachers take great pride in watching their pupils succeed. Having somebody fighting my corner and installing confidence in my ability allowed me to thrive. By encouraging me to explore new challenges, I was able to develop my character. I try to be the same hardworking, respectful individual that I was taught to be all those years ago at SGS.
What was your experience at SGS like?
I had a great time at SGS. I love all things sport-related and SGS provided sporting opportunities in abundance, whether it be football, cricket, running or tennis, just to name a few. Academically, I was lucky to receive brilliant support throughout my time at the school which set me up perfectly for University.
Were there any teachers who inspired you or made a particular impression on you?
Mr Craig was a great influence upon me during my time at SGS. He was an extremely knowledgeable and charismatic individual who inspired his pupils. I honestly don’t know anyone who didn’t like the man!
During sixth form, Dr Johnson made a lasting impression on me. He was a very good teacher and the Chemistry department’s examination results reflect this.
Lastly, I owe a great deal of gratitude to Mr Harwood who was responsible for many great sporting memories during my teenage years.
What did you do after SGS?
Firstly I studied at the University of Sheffield and graduated as a Dentist in 2019. I then completed my dental foundation training at Southey Green dental practice in Sheffield. I am now completing a postgraduate Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery dental core training post in Sheffield.
I have kept links to SGS with my brother Tom teaching in the Prep. School, and calling upon my services to teach Year 3 about teeth! Hopefully a few more budding Dentists in the making!
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Having graduated in 2019 my career as a Dentist has really only just begun. However, I’d say my highlights definitely include getting recognition for my hard work. I have been lucky to receive 3 undergraduate dental awards from the University. Additionally, I won the British Endodontic Society Foundation Dentist of the Year award and first place in the ‘verbal presentation’ category at a regional presentation day.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to follow a similar path to you?
Make the most of your time at school and enjoy every minute of it. If you are considering a career in Dentistry, I’d recommend doing plenty of work experience to ensure you actually find staring into people’s mouths all day interesting (I appreciate it’s not for everyone!). If you are applying, I’d suggest contacting a dentist/ dental student for advice on personal statements and interviews. It’s a long and stressful path, but it’s also a very rewarding and well looked after profession!
What are your ambitions for the future?
Next year I plan to head back into general practice. My short term goal is to undertake postgraduate qualifications which will increase my knowledge and clinical skills. I hope that in gaining these additional skills, I will be in a position to start accepting referrals for more complex treatment.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I spend a lot of time walking in the peak district. I like to keep active, playing football for a local side. I enjoy going to the pub with friends.