If you like helping people, enjoy working with your hands as well as your mind, and want a job with responsibility, a career as a dental assistant may be for you. The dental assistant is the dentist's "right arm," taking on significant responsibly as a member of the dental health care team. Assistants greatly increase the efficiency of the dentist in the delivery of oral health care and are valuable members of the dental health care team. If a career in health care appeals to you, but several extra years of school and a rigid work schedule don't, then dental assisting is a field you will want to explore.
The Dental Assisting Program at IVCC is designed to be completed in one year full time option 1 or two years part time option 2. The Dental Assisting Program has three fully equipped dental treatment rooms as well as dental laboratory equipment available for instruction in preclinical and laboratory procedures. Clinical experience is provided under the guidance of qualified dentists and dental assistants on campus and in private dental practices.
High school students interested in careers as dental assistants should take courses in biology, chemistry, health, keyboarding, and office procedures. Admission to the Dental Assisting Program at IVCC is selective. Please contact the Office of Admissions and Records, the Counseling Department, or a local high school counselor for complete details concerning application, selection, and admission requirements.
The Dental Assisting Program at IVCC is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association, a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council on Postsecondary Accreditation and by the United States Department of Education. Upon successful completion of this program, the graduate is eligible to take the Dental Assisting National BoardExamination to receive national certification. Graduates of the Dental Assisting Program are also certified in Expanded Functions as described by Illinois law.
Employment of dental assistants is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2010, reflecting dentists' interest in improving their productivity as well as increased demand for dental care. Most areas of the country are currently reporting shortages of dental assistants. There are excellent career opportunities for "nontraditional" dental assisting students. These individuals, who don't fit the usual profile of the dental assisting student, might meet one or more of the following criteria: over 23 years of age; individuals seeking career change or job reentry after a period of unemployment; or individuals with culturally diverse backgrounds. The Dental Assisting Program at IVCC offers a variety of educational options for these "nontraditional" students.
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