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Finding Employment After Graduation

Aspen Dental

Date: February 27, 2018

Among the many stressors and responsibilities of this last semester, one of them includes finding an incredible job after graduation.

Former THE NEXTDDS Student Ambassador Ami Pandya, a recent graduate of Indiana University School of Dentistry, shared useful tips in “Finding a Job After Dental School.” Hopefully these valuable recommendations will guide you on your own quest to employment.

Stay Active

Take advantage of ASDA lunch and learns, vendor fairs, and other socials at your school. State dental societies, dental vendors, and/or dental corporate groups will host many of these events, which allow dental students to learn more about their companies and employment opportunities. Dental support organizations (DSOs) will host events specifically for fourth-year dental students to initiate discussion about possible job opportunities in a DSO-supported practice. These events are great venues to build relationships with recruiters who can help you find a job in various regions across the United States and set up initial interviews. If you have a business card, be sure to take a few to the event to pass out to the recruiters.

Network Within the State Dental Society

A state dental society is one of the best resources you can have during dental school. Not only do they support you throughout your dental school career, they are eager to help you transition into employment. Contact your state and local dental society to stay connected and up-to-date with their events. Get involved and get to know the doctors. Networking can open you to several job prospects that you may have otherwise missed. Check out the classified section on the state dental societies’ websites. Many doctors will place advertisements in these classifieds hoping to find excellent doctors to join their practice, including recent graduates.

Prepare Early

Do not wait until the last minute to search for a job. Depending on the region you want to practice in, the area could be potentially competitive without a plethora of options. Making connections and networking early on can give you options and the ability to compare them and make an informed decision. Take the time to educate yourself on all prospective jobs, so you do not miss out on an incredible dental provider position. As you enter your fourth year of dental school, you will begin to look for job opportunities after graduation. Take the time to formulate a game plan, which will set you up for success. Attend events sponsored by ASDA and your school to connect with recruiters to help you obtain a job with a DSO group or private practice. Get involved with your local and state dental societies to meet established dentists who may be looking to sell their practice or hire an associate. Most importantly, start your job search early to give yourself the best opportunity for success. With these tips and an enthusiastic outlook, you will have an incredible journey transitioning from dental student to dentist after graduation!


Upon graduation, you’ll be faced with the daunting prospect of being released into the real world, a college degree in hand, and needing to pay back upwards of six figures of debt. With countless paths to go down following your graduation, and so many other considerations coming into play, it can be very hard to decide where to go. Whether or not you go for an associateship, residency, or corporate dentistry, it’s important to utilize as many resources as you can to prepare you for your bright future. 


Questions While Considering Your Contract/Agreement

  • Is there a contract? If so, what are the terms?
  • Have you been asked to sign a non-compete? Is it confined to a geographic area to designate a specific time frame after separation?
  • Is non-solicitation specified?
  • Does it pose a confidentiality or developments clause?
  • Does it specify practice location?
  • Are benefits (e.g., healthcare time off) outlined?
  • Does the agreement protect you or the employer dentist?
  • Does it specify causes for termination?
  • Are steps outlined for a dispute resolution process? 

“Networking can open you to job prospects you may have otherwise missed.”