Two schools, Heald College and the University of Hawaii Maui College, offer accredited dental care assistant programs in Hawaii. Founded in 1863, Heald College–modeled as a business-career institution–has a campus in the state capital of Honolulu (in addition to 11 other campus, including its main one in San Francisco, California). The University of Hawaii Maui College–a public, co-educational commuter college–is located at the island of Maui and forms part of the University of Hawaii system. The dental care assistant programs from both educational institutions are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA).
Dental Assistant Schools in Hawaii
UH Maui lists its dental care assistant training offering as one of its health-related certificate programs. The curriculum is divided into two semesters within an academic year. The classes cover subject areas such as dental office management, oral biology, chairside dental assisting, dental radiography, and dental materials. Overall the core subjects in UH Maui’s dental assisting program total 23 credits. Also required are two pre-requisites (in English and biology). By comparison, Heald College provides an Associate of Applied Science degree in Dental Assisting, which can be completed in two years. Boasting of 99 credits, the program has a more elaborate body of general education requirements, with subject areas like anatomy and physiology, public speaking, algebra, psychology, and English composition. The collection of core courses are also beefed up, with subject additions like biomedical sciences, pharmacology, office emergencies, coronal polishing, and pit and fissure sealants. Other additions are externships and seminars for more practical knowledge and a trio of classes for professional development.
SALARIES FOR DENTAL AID/ASSISTANTS IN HAWAII
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), dental care assistants in Hawaii had an annual mean wage of $32,740 ($15.74 per hour) in 2012. Honolulu specifically had a yearly mean salary of $33,180, which was more than anywhere else in the island. By comparison, the annual mean wage of dental aid in the U.S. was $35,080 ($16.86 per hour). In 2010, there were 1,730 dental aid in Hawaii, with 1,120 of those in Honolulu alone. The BLS expects a 10 percent growth in job opportunities for the dental assisting field in Hawaii between 2010 and 2020.
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