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Hello! I am wondering if anyone has gotten an associates degree after completing their bachelors?

I graduated almost a year ago with a degree in humanities. My current job is fine, but it's kind of boring. I make decent money for the area, but there isn't a lot of opportunity to advance at my current job. I also don't see being able to find tons of better opportunities with my degree. I'm currently working in customer service, just for a company that pays better than average.

I am considering going back for my associates degree to become a dental hygienist. It's always been a field I've been interested in, and to be honest I'm not sure why I didn't go for it in the first place.

I would be able to meet my pre-reqs while working full time, but would most likely need to drop to part time to complete the degree.

I have loans from my bachelors, but would pay out of pocket for the associates.

Has anyone taken this path previously? Any dental hygienists here? TIA!
 

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I'm not a dental hygienist, and don't have a bachelor's degree, but I do have an associates degree and am a former radiologic technologist (xray tech). I've been home with the kids full time 10 years now, though I have kept up my credentials and am still a registered tech.

In my experience, many folks with these two year degrees in a specialized area of health care make MORE money than many folks with 4 year degrees (dependent on area of study, of course). I cannot speak on the dental side of these 2 year degrees, but I do know my area of study required an intensive (unpaid) internship throughout my 2 years of study. So just make sure you have a firm understanding of not only the academic demands of this endeavor, but possibly the hours-working-without-pay part, too!

Check the market. I know xray comes and goes in cycles. Sometimes there's a HUGE demand for techs and finding a great job is a piece of cake, but then lots of people decide to study it and a few years later, there aren't many job openings for new grads as the market is 'flooded'. I imagine dental might be similar.

And, of course, you might consider interviewing a few hygienists about what the job REALLY entails to be sure you have a firm understanding of what you're getting yourself into. I still clearly remember a fellow xray tech's panic during class when it was revealed to him that techs have to perform barium enemas with the radiologist. Not his favorite surprise, clearly, but only a tiny fraction of what those in my field have to do as part of the job.

Good luck with it- hopefully someone with more knowledge of the specific field will pop by!
 
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My sister in law is a dental hygentist and I am a nurse. I would agree with khaski visit (spend the day) within the settings you would like to be employed at. Join the dental hygentist trade association and mingle with a couple to get a feel for what the job really entails. Talk to students who are currently in the program. Research policy in regards to dental services reimbursement.
 
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