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Non-DDS specialty programs that can give you a license to practice in USA


Many dental graduates aspiring for a clinical career in USA keep looking for programs that may not necessarily be DDS or DMD, but provide a specialty training along with a license to practice in the USA. This article is to make you aware of one of such programs that is becoming popular and also the journey of a recently graduated Indian student towards this program.

The name of the program is Restorative Dentistry Advanced Clinical Training (ACT) Program, which is an intensive two - to three-year program designed to provide internationally trained dentists with advanced clinical training in the broad realm of operative and restorative dentistry.

This is an excellent opportunity for those who seek additional restorative experiences to supplement what they have already learned through formal education and/or practice in didactic, teaching, and clinical formats. The objective of the program is to take dentists to the next level in patient care, education, and professional development through a deeper understanding of the art and science of restorative dentistry.

Although this is not a CODA accredited program like DDS/ DMD, a certificate is awarded upon successful completion of the program. Some states in the U.S. may allow 2-year graduates the opportunity for licensure. One is required to contact the individual state dental boards for specific requirements.

The journey of Gayathri Iyer:

24 years old Dr. Gayathri Iyer, a graduate from YMT Dental College, Navi Mumbai is a keen learner with realistic goals. Her self-confidence helped her in getting selected in both the programs at UCLA University; Advanced Clinical Training (ACT) Restorative Program (which she is now pursuing) and ACT(Restorative and Aesthetic Dentistry), after vigorous interview rounds leading to her attaining her license to practice in the United States after the 2 years program - ACT in Restorative Dentistry, UCLA School of Dentistry. Mumbai based institute - Abroad Avenuez was instrumental in guiding her through this successful journey. Read it in her own words.

"Some journeys become a story of a lifetime and they help you in ways you never imagined. And the people that guide you through it hold a special place in your heart. They have seen the caterpillar grow into a butterfly, not just the colorful flights but also the challenges and struggle of growing into one."

I met with a lot of different people who tried to guide me with their best knowledge and persuade me to follow a particular path but somehow I wasn't convinced. I was introduced to Abroad Avenuez by a friend. And since the day I first walked into their office, I knew for a fact that I had come to the right place. I remember my first meeting with the team from Abroad Avenuez where I was stuck with the same question: what after BDS? I was sure I wanted to specialize in Prosthodontics but I did not know the various options I had. I thought I had done my homework about the subject I like and which universities were offering what courses. I just had to get them to help me go ahead with it. I clearly mentioned this is what I want to do and this is where I want to do it. I was so clear and confident about it that my father was proud of it. After my clarity of thought was appreciated, I was asked two simple questions which brought me down to reality and I thought hard, with no answers. First: Had I prepared myself for this course over the last 5 years? Second: Where will I be 5 years after the course? Both questions brought into perspective that these were just my ideas or a wish list from the last two months and I had no idea as to how to make it a reality.

From there on, the conversation took a different dimension and I was given actual facts and examples for the next hour about how to help me turn my life around. What I pursue now, would change my whole attitude towards my profession and influence my entire career. As I received more and more information that day, I really did not know if I would be able to make it but I knew for sure that if I receive the right guidance here, it would be very much possible. And I did receive the best guidance. Today I hold my position happily, at every dentist’s dream school, UCLA School of Dentistry for Advanced Clinical Training Program in Restorative Dentistry for International Dentists.

Over the last year, we have worked together on so many different aspects of my personality and my applications to various universities that, whether I made it today at UCLA or not, I definitely made it as a much more skilled and confident dentist. The whole process involved giving TOEFL exams and building up my CV for the likes of such big institutions. Meeting the deadlines is the most critical part of such journeys, and Abroad Avenuez knows what it takes. I used to get reminder mails every few days from them to make sure if I got things done in time. That constant push challenged me to try harder to achieve my goal.

There have definitely been days when I had given up on things and thought it was too hard to finish it in the last minute, but the support system was always there, reassuring me and showing me the bigger picture, the ultimate goal. And when I actually completed the tasks on time, some days I would be a bit over confident thinking, I know I’m going to get this. On such days, I would be told ‘there are other things pending’. So the journey was very thoughtfully carved out.

I cannot put it in words how much this journey has benefitted me. Right from how to draft an email and using correct words to describe your roles as a student/dentist to how to talk, conduct yourself in an interview to bring out your real personality and make THE IMPRESSION. I was taught how to become a good conversationalist, how to be honest in accepting the things you don\’t know, to be confident and firm on your grounds to achieve your goals no matter what people say or think- this guidance I received through out, and at every step. And I believe it helped me not just to get into the course I wanted but more importantly, it changed me as a person. The journey made me a professional from a student.

Abroad Avenuez has been very helpful in molding my personality in this phase and I believe it will stay with me a long road ahead. They have always been very organized, well-timed, making all the information and resources customized for every student and never hesitant for taking more time to research something they don’t know about. My ideas were never discouraged and they were always accepted and in return I would always get an unbiased and reliable opinion.

It's been quite a year and I want to take this opportunity to sincerely thank the team for all their efforts and valuable recommendations. I carry them with me for a lifetime….Thank you

You can contact Abroad Avenuez at 022-49310260 for all your abroad queries and to start your own successful journey.