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Why I Teach - Marie Bakari, DBA

Marie Bakari and Dr. Tammi Cooper

I believe that we are guided to our destiny by others’ deeds and words. While working as a dental hygienist, I engaged with patients to learn a little about them, their lives, and their careers. During these conversations I could figure out what made them ‘tick’ so that I could find a way to teach each person how to achieve optimal dental health. What I did not realize was how inspired I would become by these interactions to learn, be curious about business, and to start a new career as an educator.

After earning two degrees in business, I started a company. I consulted with new and experienced business owners and provided bookkeeping, accounting, tax, notary, and investment services. Putting everything I learned to work for my family and the community has been a big thrill. While operating my small business, I pursued a practitioner’s doctorate in multicultural entrepreneurship.

Once I completed my DBA and began teaching graduate students, I realized how well dental hygiene and business ownership had prepared me for this new endeavor. I used the same technique of listening to connect so that business topics, theories, and concepts could be meaningful for each student; to flip the switch from off to on and watch each lightbulb glow!

Northcentral University feeds my enthusiasm for teaching. I have been using this one-to-one learning model for a long time; since 1993 when I began practicing as a dental hygienist. It’s really not rocket science, and it does not work every single time; but when I get to work with a committed student, it’s like magic. She or he learns, grows, and glows, and I am satisfied that I have been able to pass on knowledge, hone my teaching skills a little more, and most importantly, that I can contribute to the legacy that is NCU.