Updates from Johnson County Community College: Preparing students for a degree in dentistry

Students provide hands on, real world service-learning care to the community through our Dental Hygiene program.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, dental hygienists make an average annual salary of $72,000. It’s ranked as one of the fastest growing healthcare occupations, which means job security for graduates and an increased demand for qualified professionals. JCCC’s dental hygiene students graduate with the experience and skills needed to work in the oral health field. In fact, the program boasts a 96.4 percent first-time pass rate on the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination (NBDHE) and clinical licensure exams.

JCCC’s Dental Hygiene program provides invaluable training experiences

JCCC offers the only accredited dental hygiene program in Johnson County. After only two years of rigorous curriculum, students graduate with an Associate of Applied Science degree and are equipped to provide educational, clinical and therapeutic oral healthcare services.

Education extends beyond the classroom at JCCC and includes a variety of hands-on training opportunities. Here’s what Dental Hygiene students experience in their lectures, labs, clinics and coursework:

  • First semester: Students learn foundational skills and practice techniques on classmates.
  • Second semester: Under faculty supervision, students treat patients from the community in JCCC’s Dental Hygiene Clinic.
  • Third semester: After refining their skills and incorporating more science-related coursework into clinical situations, students treat patients in affiliate site locations such as veteran’s hospitals, Truman Medical Center locations, Vibrant Health Wyandotte’s Children’s Clinic and through JCCC’s Oral Health on Wheels mobile dental unit.
  • Fourth semester: The skills and information learned help prepare students for the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam (NBDHE) and other licensure exams.

As part of JCCC’s commitment to students, and to the greater community, our dental hygiene program provides practical experience through local volunteer and service-learning opportunities.

One way JCCC accomplishes this is through the mobile Oral Health on Wheels (OHOW) unit and the state-of-the-art on-campus Dental Hygiene Clinic. Students can treat patients directly by providing comprehensive oral healthcare services using the latest technology in these community-focused facilities.

Why should a student choose JCCC for dental hygiene?

Students in a program as extensive as dental hygiene benefit from personalized teaching and one-on-one attention from instructors. JCCC offers smaller classes sizes with a 4:1 student-to-professor ratio in clinical teaching. Additionally, all full-time faculty members have at least a master’s degree and are considered experts in dentistry – which makes them valuable mentors and key resources for our students.

Additionally, qualified students in JCCC’s Dental Hygiene program can have their tuition, books and other course-related materials paid for through the Kansas Promise Scholarship. Designed to provide Kansas students paths to high-demand, high-value jobs, Kansas Promise offers the perfect opportunity to earn a degree to launch a new career, gain new skills or advance in a current position.

Take the next step

Dental hygiene is a selective admission program, and all applicants must meet the admission requirements to qualify. Interested students can view the program details and start planning early – the fall 2023 program application opens Sept. 30, 2022.