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Why Be a Dental Assistant?
Posted Monday, Sep 27, 2010 by Allen B. Ury
Dental assistants are in high demand in Florida.
According to O*NET, the online employment resource sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, employment opportunities for dental assistants within the state of Florida is expected to increase 32 percent in the 2006-2016 period. 
Why consider a dental assistant career? Here are some key reasons for choosing this career path:
- Flexibility. About a half to two-thirds of dental assistant jobs are full-time with 35- to 40-hour work weeks. The rest are part-time positions or have variable hours. You can seek a situation that best suits your needs.
- Work environment. Most dental assistants work in dentists’ offices or dental clinics. These facilities tend to be very professional and organized.
- Qualifications. Florida requires dental assistants to be licensed and registered. You can qualify for this license by taking professional training at a CODA-accredited dental assisting program. Such training can often be completed in less than a year.
- Income Potential. According to the State of Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation, the median annual wage for dental assistants in 2009 was $33,700, which meant that half of all dental assistants made more than that and half made less.  Those in the lowest 10 percent made just $23,600 per year while those in the upper 10 percent made an average $45,300.
- Job Prospects. As noted earlier, dental assistant jobs in Florida are expected to have grown 32 percent between 2006 and 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. That’s an increase of 720 jobs.
- Opportunities for Advancement. Dental assisting can be the first step on an upward career path to the more specialized — and higher paying — dental hygienist position.
Dental Assistant Training Offered at Everest University in Jacksonville
The Dental Assistant program at Everest University in Jacksonville, Fla., is approved by the Florida Board of Dentistry and offers a Dental Assistant career education program that can be completed in just eight months. Taught by dental assisting professionals, the program provides students with knowledge of the basic dental sciences, proficiency in laboratory and clinical skills, and practical experience in a dental office-like setting.
Everest’s Dental Assistant program includes hands-on training in:
- Dental Office Emergencies and Compliance
- Dental Radiography
- Dental Specialties
- Operatory Dentistry
- Laboratory Procedures
- Dental Anatomy and Orthodontics
- Dental Health
- Dental Assistant Externship
For complete information on class schedules, times and requirements, contact Everest University today!
Financial aid is available for those who qualify.
http://www.careerinfonet.org/occ_rep.asp?optstatus=011000000&soccode=319091&id=1&nodeid=2&stfips=12&search=Go updated 2010.