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Young Dugoni alumna fulfills career dream, opens dental practice in Stockton

Sharon Manaois

Sharon Manaois ’08, ’12 at her dental practice in Stockton.

Jun 16, 2020
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Sharon Manaois is feeling overjoyed. This month, the 34-year-old finally was able to open the doors to her dental practice in her hometown, the culmination of more than a decade of hard work, perseverance and plenty of bumps in the road, including a worldwide pandemic. 

“I feel very happy,” said Manaois, a 2012 Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry graduate. “I’m very proud.” 

Manaois had initially thought about settling outside of California. She and her husband had looked at cities in Texas and Arizona, but a sense of duty to her community and family drew her back to Stockton. 

“No (dentist) wants to set up shop in Stockton if they’re from a big city,” she said. “The only people who are going to have passion for this city are the people who are born and raised here. Who else is going to take care of this town? We can’t just have providers who come in for a few years and move. I want to be able to grow with my patients.” 

This month, Manaois was finally able to welcome her new patients to her Porter Avenue office. Construction issues and then the COVID-19 pandemic halted progress and delayed her opening for two months, but with help from family, Manaois toiled day and night to ensure she could open once the green light came. 

Sharon Manaois with a patient

“My family is really proud,” she said of her family’s support through this process. “They look up to me, they know this journey has been going since I was in high school. They knew that this was going to be my path, and for it to finally come into fruition, they are happy.” 

Manaois has pursued her dream of opening her own practice since she was a teen growing up in Stockton. It was during her high school years that she made the determination that after community college she would transfer to University of the Pacific because it would allow her to reach that goal.

“When I was looking for dental schools, UOP came highly recommended,” Manaois said. “It felt like it was meant to be. This was a no-brainer.” 

Manaois earned her undergraduate degree in biological sciences and a minor in business from Pacific in 2008. She was intentional in choosing her degrees so she could enroll at Dugoni and eventually open her own practice. At Pacific, Manaois joined a chemistry fraternity along with other predental students, which she said was like having a built-in family who were on the same journey. Having that community helped tremendously, she said. The students helped each other with applications, interviews and preparing for exams to get into dental school. 

“We were all in this together and all the mentors helped out, too,” she said. “UOP is really big on trying to help people succeed and that humanistic approach from Dugoni (has had a lasting impact).”  

“At Dugoni they are big on treating patients and treating students (as equals). They treated us with respect.” 

Manaois said she has applied that personal and humanistic approach she learned at Dugoni with her throughout her career, which includes serving in the Navy for eight years (four of those on active duty) after graduating dental school, and five different dental offices. And it will be a hallmark of her practice. 

To learn more about Sharon Manaois and her practice, visit

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