Dental Hygiene (A.A.S.)

Image of Dental Hygiene

One of the original health science programs at the college, the Dental Hygiene degree program prepares you to become a qualified Licensed Dental Hygienist.

Course material is divided between theory and technique, and utilizes modern laboratory and clinical facilities. The clinic, dental anatomy/preventive dentistry/dental materials laboratory and radiographic facilities are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, and are used to provide individualized instruction.

This academic program is primarily designed for those who wish to enter the workforce immediately following graduation, however, the program has articulation agreements in place for graduates of the program who wish to complete a bachelor's degree after graduation. Licensure is obtained by successfully completing the National Boards in Dental Hygiene and the Commission on Dental Competency Assessments Clinical Licensure Examination.

Program Specific Information (including Criteria and Procedures for Admission):

  • Guidelines for Selective Admission
    This is a very competitive program; some students may be advised to choose another option or reapply in the future and complete additional coursework in order to strengthen their application for admission. A published set of guidelines highlighting the criteria used to evaluate candidates can be found on the Guidelines for Selective Admission.
  • Technical Standards
    All students interested in this program should review the Technical Standards Policy. applicants accepted into the Dental Hygiene Program must be able to meet the department's technical standards as outlined in the Technical Standards Policy.
  • All students interested in this program should also review the mission and competencies of the Dental Hygiene program.

This program is offered by the Dental Hygiene Department.

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Program Highlights

  • Job placement for our graduates has traditionally been very high. For the past several years, 100 percent of our graduates who choose to enter the field have found employment.
  • Several students each year continue their education at a four-year college or university.
  • The college's Dr. Robert H. Hill II Dental Hygiene Clinic is one of the largest the largest state-of-the-art facilities of its kind in the Northeast.
  • The Student Chapter of the American Dental Hygienists' Association participates and sponsors numerous events during the academic year. 
  • KiDz Corner
    The Dental Hygiene Department is proud to share Web resources to help assist school age children, parents and teachers in the Capital Region and throughout the country.
  • All Continuing Education courses that are presented by the Hudson Valley Community College Department of Dental Hygiene are approved by New York State for Continuing Education Units.
  • This program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation and has been granted the accreditation status of "approval without reporting requirements". The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at (312) 440-4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611.
  • Meet the department's faculty and staff.

Scholarships Available Scholarships available.

Career and Transfer Opportunities

The program is specifically designed to prepare students for a career as a Licensed Dental Hygienist. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (as of 2015), job growth in this field should be much higher than average over the next 10 years, with 38 percent growth from 2010 to 2020. Information regarding NYS Dental Hygiene licensure and scope of practice can be found on the Office of the Professions website.

Current employment opportunities, including median salaries for Dental Hygienists, can be obtained from the appropriate state link from the US Department of Labor's website.

Various career opportunities exist in dental hygiene, including dental hygiene education, practice in private office settings, hospitals, nursing homes, school health programs, community health projects, and the military. Graduates also have entered dental sales, education, research, administration and professional consulting.

Recent employers have included: 1st Advantage Dental; Albany Access Dentistry; Amsterdam Dental; Aspen Dental; Breathe Easy Dental Temp Agency; Dental Care Services; Express Scrips Pharmacy; Family and Cosmetic Dentistry; Gold Dental; Heins Family Dentistry; Hyde Park Dental Arts; Lake Placid Smiles; Latham Dental Group; Lozman Orthodontics; Pediatric Dental Center of Georgia; Pine Ridge Dental; Polaski Dental Group; Private Dentist Office; Samaritan Hospital; The Smile Zone; and Western New York Dental Associates.

Transfer agreements for Dental Hygiene graduates include: College of St. Joseph; Pennsylvania College of Technology; Excelsior College and SUNY Empire State College. In addition, recent graduates have transferred to Mount Ida College, SUNY Canton and SUNY Farmingdale.

The Center for Careers and Transfer offers Career Services and Transfer Services to all students.

For more information regarding this program, please contact:

Judy DiLorenzo
Department Chair
Dental Hygiene Department
Fitzgibbons Health Technologies Center, Room 155/157
(518) 629-7442

For more information about admission to this program, please contact:

Admissions Office
Guenther Enrollment Services Center, Room 223
(518) 629-7309

* In order to obtain a New York state license to practice dental hygiene, you must be a United States citizen or an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United State.