Becoming a Dental Assistant in San Jose, California

San Jose is the third-largest city in California and is located on the coast, just south of San Francisco. As the unofficial capitol of Silicon Valley, San Jose is a diverse city with a central downtown area surrounded by sprawling suburban neighborhoods. San Jose has a moderate climate and rarely experiences extreme temperatures. People enjoy an average of 300 sunny days a year and the great mix of cultural and outdoor activities.

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Dental Assistant Schools in San Jose

Dental assistants in California can train on the job, but formal training at a community college or technical school is recommended. If you are interested in training to become a dental assistant in San Jose, consider the following programs:

  • San Jose City College (SJCC). Located near downtown San Jose, SJCC has a rigorous 11-month accredited program geared for people who want to pursue a career as a registered dental assistant. This program is full-time and includes a four-week summer session. Upon completion, students are eligible to sit for the California Registered Dental Assistant Examination and the Dental Assisting National Board.
  • Dental Assisting Institute (DAI), Modesto, California. This 11-week accelerated program is ideal for people who are transitioning careers. The classes are held on Saturdays at a practicing dental clinic, so students can maintain their employment as they study. The program is not accredited, but it is certified by the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education. The DAI prepares you to work as an entry-level dental assistant, and they offer job placement services.
  • Carrington College. You can take either a one- or two-year dental assisting program at Carrington College. Located just north of highway 101 and east of State Route 85, this centrally-located campus is easy to reach by car or public transportation. These accredited programs prepare you for taking the California licensing examination. Upon completion, you will receive either a certificate of achievement or an associate’s Degree, depending on your program.

Career Outlook and Salary Expectations

According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, there were over 3,400 dental assistants in the San Jose area in 2017, and they made an average of $23.68 an hour, or approximately $49,230 a year.

San Jose is one of the most rapidly-growing regions of California. The number of dental assistants across the state is expected to increase by 16.5 percent from 2017 to 2026, and many of these jobs will likely be in San Jose.

Working as a Dental Assistant in San Jose

As a leading center for both technology and healthcare, San Jose is an excellent place to work as a dental assistant. Dental assistants in San Jose may find work in small or multi-dentist practices, at oral surgery centers and even at the local universities and community colleges. If you enjoy working with your hands and helping people, you might consider becoming a dental assistant in San Jose.

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Get information on Dental Assistant programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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