If you are looking for a state where you can make an excellent living as a dental hygienist, search no further than New Jersey. New Jersey is not only the eleventh most populous state in the union, but also the most densely populated of all 50. Squeezed between Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, and the Atlantic Ocean, it is a mine of opportunity if you are in search of a high hourly wage.
What is it like to live in New Jersey? There is a lot of hustle and bustle in the Garden State, but lots to do as well! Some of NJ’s most popular activities, landmarks, and sights include the Cape May County Park & Zoo, Cape May Beaches, Ocean City Boardwalk, and Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum. New Jersey is home to a surprising number of outdoor parks, including Wildwood Beach and the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge. The state also boasts the prestigious Princeton University along with its world-renowned art museum.
Are you a sports fan? Living in NJ, you can cheer for the New Jersey Devils as well as the New York Giants and New York Jets. On that note, one of the most exciting things about NJ is living so close to the Big Apple! Many people who cannot afford rents in NYC choose to live in NJ instead and commute into the city for work or leisure.
Dental Hygienist Salary in New Jersey
As I mentioned previously, one of the most exciting things about working as a dental hygienist is the pay. For comparison, you need to know the median annual and hourly pay rates nationwide according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS reports that dental hygienists nationwide pull in a median annual salary of $70,210 per year, or $33.75 per hour.
Now consider that the median annual salary for dental hygienists in the state of New Jersey is $88,300! That comes out to $42.45 per hour. That difference is huge. Of course, NJ has a higher cost of living than a lot of other states, but you can consider it a great compromise of you dream of living and working close to NYC—without NYC’s crazy rent rates. In 2018, the BLS reported 6,290 dental hygienists worked in New Jersey, so that represents a lot of openings in the state for a career projected to be growing at a rate of 20%.
|Area Name||Employment||Hourly mean wage||Annual mean wage|
|Atlantic City, Hammonton|| 220|| 40.95|| 85180
|Ocean City|| 50|| 41.33|| 85970
|Trenton|| 170|| 42.01|| 87370
If you do decide to become a dental hygienist in the state of New Jersey, you will need to meet the following requirements to obtain your license
- Graduate from an accredited program.
- Successfully take the written National Board Dental Hygiene Examination.
- You must pass the exam offered by the Commission on Dental Competency Assessments (CDCA).
- Unlike many other states, New Jersey does not require you to get a CPR license (it is still a good idea, however, and may lend you a competitive advantage).
- There is no temporary license or teacher license available, but you may get a retired or inactive license if you need it later down the line.
- There is a continuing education (CE) requirement. You must always have 10 hours of CE under your belt for the past two years to maintain your license.
- Additional requirements for the state include checks of your employment history, verification of your license and exam scores, as well as a criminal background check. If you were convicted of a serious misdemeanor or felony, you may be denied licensure.
New Jersey Dental Hygiene Programs
Excited to start working as a dental hygienist in New Jersey? You will need to start by earning your degree from an accredited school. You can find the full list below. Enjoy this first step on your journey!
|Bergen Community College||400 Paramus Road S-337|
Paramus, NJ 07652
|Camden County College||College Drive, P.O. Box 200 Blackwood, NJ 08012||www.camdencc.edu||AAS|
|Eastern International College||684 Neweark Avenue|
Jersey City, NJ 07306
|Middlesex County College||2600 Woodbridge Ave., P. O. Box 3050|
Edison, NJ 08818
|Rowan College at Burlington County||601 Pemberton-Browns Mills Road Pemberton, NJ 08068||www.rcbc.edu||AAS|