Bill Smith is the new Dental Assisting Program Director at Carrington College’s Mesquite campus. He is a Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) and a Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) in Texas with more than 40 years of industry knowledge and experience.
Smith’s dental assisting career began when he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force after college. He started as a dental assistant and later received special training as a hygienist at the Air Force Dental Hygiene School.
After overseeing the clinic at Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, Smith taught dental assisting at a local college before taking on a new role helping graduating dentists start their dental practices. He spent the next several years specializing in dental equipment sales and dental office design before returning to teaching in 2008.
SETTING STUDENTS UP FOR SUCCESS
As program director of the Dental Assisting program at the Mesquite campus, Smith works with students on a daily basis, coaching and mentoring them from the first day of class to graduation.
A hands-on job like dental assisting requires hands-on teaching. To prepare students for their future careers, the program includes a combination of lectures and clinical experiences. Carrington students gain first-hand experience learning to take X-rays, set up procedure trays, take impressions of the teeth while creating teeth models and more!
Since Smith has helped set up 500 dental offices from St. Louis, Missouri, to Brownsville, Texas, he knows exactly what skills students’ future employers are looking for in potential hires. He and his team help cultivate these skills and abilities in Dental Assisting students by focusing on applied learning every day.
Smith also matches students with community partners for Dental Assisting externships and provides tips to prepare students to pass the Registered Dental Assistant exam. “We want to make sure Carrington students graduate with more than just basic training and education. We provide real-world experience, valuable interview skills and a support network to equip them for success.”
It’s all about helping people for Smith, and that comes in many forms. He loves teaching students and young children how to take care of their teeth early on in life. He is also very passionate about enabling students to share their budding passion with others through volunteering and community outreach.
Smith purposefully integrates volunteering opportunities with student learning activities like dental check-ups for the community. This has a two-fold purpose: it helps provide much-needed education and training to both the under-served community and to the students who are able to practice their skills and share their passion.
Smith and his team just hosted a campus event called “Safe Smiles” in March. Through this program, the Dental Assisting students taught kids why, how and when they should brush their teeth. They also helped each kid create a complimentary “tooth print’’, giving each child’s family a dental impression for identification purposes in the event of an emergency. “It was a really important touchpoint for some of the families in the Mesquite community and definitely memorable for the Dental Assisting students,” Smith said.
Smith and his wife of 35 years are the proud parents of four children who have blessed them with 11 grandchildren. Outside of work, Bill enjoys singing gospel music, playing video games online and spending time with his grandchildren.
 For comprehensive consumer information, visit carrington.edu/cc/da
 Individuals seeking to enter this career field may be subject to screenings such as, but not limited to, criminal background checks and drug/alcohol testing prior to externship, to attain occupational licensure/certification or employment and throughout their careers.
 Carrington College prepares students to take appropriate certification and licensure exams related to their individual majors. The College does not guarantee students will successfully pass these exams or be certified or licensed as a result of completing the program. Credential preparation varies by location.