New Dentists

Welcome to a page created just for new dentists. It has content designed to help you navigate your first ten years in the profession with ease.

First off, remember no matter where you are in your career, if you have questions, CDA is always just a phone call (800.232.7645) or email away. Also, if you haven’t already, check out CDA’s Guide for the New Dentist. In it you’ll find everything from advice on writing CVs, to how to start your first practice. And, for our very recent graduates be sure to search our classifieds for the latest job openings. So, let’s get down to business.  

Membership is free your first year

What’s more, because we understand that you’re just getting started, your CDA dues will be reduced for the next four years.

Discounts for New Graduates

To apply for membership, follow these simple steps:

  1. Complete the online application. After licensure, you will become a member of the ADA, CDA and the local dental society closest to your school.
  2. When you establish a permanent address, contact your local dental society or update your profile online
    *If you’ve moved out of the current dental society jurisdiction, please contact CDA (800.232.7645) to transfer your membership to the appropriate dental society. 
TDIC Professional & Business Liability Insurance
  • Started by dentists, and protecting dentists is all we do
  • Experts in the type and amount of insurance for every stage of your career
  • 30-year history and protect nearly 18,000 dentists nationwide
  • Five-minute short form and e-signature make the online application process a breeze

TDIC $50 New Dentists Program

Once you pass your board exams and obtain your license we have quite the present for you - pay just $50 for your first year of Professional Liability insurance with TDIC. What’s more, you’ll receive a 45% discount on your second year of practice and 25% on your third.  

Apply today.

Financial Assistance

Student Loan Repayment Grant and Loan Repayment Programs

The weight of student loan debt can make a career in public or community health nearly impossible for new dentists. To offset some of the financial burden, the CDA Foundation awards recent dental school/specialty graduates with grants toward repaying their educational loan. Amounts range from up to $35,000 per year for a maximum of $105,000 over three years in exchange for a commitment to care for the underserved. Often, it’s the difference that makes the impossible, possible.

For more information and to apply


Terry M. Fong  
Member Concierge

New Dentist Guide
Loan Repayment Programs

Loan repayment programs exist to support those interested in pursuing a career in dentistry. Many of these programs have been created specifically to increase access to care for underserved populations. Click on the links below to learn what’s available to you.

CDA Foundation
Dental Board of California
CA Office of Health Planning & Development
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
US Department of Veterans Affairs (GI bill)
Indian Health Services
News for New Dentists
New licensure by portfolio set to be implemented

Dental students in California will soon officially be able to graduate with a “portfolio” model exam process over the course of their final year in dental school. In November, the Dental Board of California finalized the regulatory process of approval for the portfolio examination model and California’s dental schools can now begin the implementation process (it is not a requirement for the schools, however). This is the first licensure-by-portfolio-exam program in the nation.


Zuckerberg teaches dentists social media strategy at CDA Presents

Edward Zuckerberg, DDS, knows a thing or two about social media and technology trends. If not for his time spent at the NYU College of Dentistry in the 70s and during his practicing years researching new technology and purchasing one of the first Atari and IBM computers, but also his family ties – he is the father of Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg. In fact, Mark created his first social network at age 12 in his dad’s dental office, long before Facebook. His dad, Edward, recently lectured on social media strategy for dentists at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco.


CDA helps new dentists launch their careers

To help new dentists start their careers off on the right path, CDA hosted a New Dentist Career Launch at its headquarters. The three-day program held from July 9-11 provided new dentists extensive and intense training intended to increase their understanding of the nuances of a career in dentistry and guide them toward achieving professional success. The 50 new dentists in attendance learned about topics such as reducing student loan debt, contract and lease negotiation strategies for practice start-up or acquisition and understanding their credit and personal financial resume.