Alyssa Kmitta

GHC graduate and North Paulding High alum Alyssa Kmitta continues her pursuit of dental hygiene

Alyssa Kmitta plans to continue her education after she graduates this spring from the Associate of Science in Dental Hygiene program at Georgia Highlands College (GHC). Her next step? A Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene from GHC. 

Her road toward GHC and dental hygiene started as a junior at North Paulding High School, where she participated in the Dual Enrollment program. 

“I chose to continue my studies here [at GHC] after high school graduation due to the range in locations, affordability and quality of education,” Alyssa said. 

In addition, Alyssa found inspiration to pursue dental hygiene from her grandmother. 

“Growing up, I noticed she was the only adult I knew who actually loved her job, and she showed me how rewarding the profession of dental hygiene truly is,” Alyssa said. “To this day, she is still practicing and enjoys her career more than the thought of retiring.” 

In the ASDH program, Alyssa has had the opportunity to shadow dental hygienists and participate in the college’s dental hygiene clinic. She has also maintained a job in customer service during her education, requiring her to hone and apply time management skills. 

“I believe the ASDH program at Georgia Highlands specifically prepares you for the real world,” Alyssa said. “From learning to adapt to an extremely fast-paced learning environment to recruiting our own patients, it was a challenge. However, everything we’ve had to do has shaped us into confident and well-rounded healthcare providers.” 

She said each of her dental hygiene instructors worked hard to provide additional assistance and motivation for students to excel in the program while also considering personal circumstances. 

“While completing my first semester of the dental hygiene program, I expressed to one of my instructors, Mrs. [Alania] Henderson, that I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to balance the school load and my work schedule,” Alyssa said. “She reassured me and taught me about how to request student loans. This allowed me to switch to working part-time and have my main area of focus be on my education.”  

This week, Alyssa will take the National Board of Dental Hygiene exam, her final step toward becoming a registered dental hygienist.  

“After this achievement, I plan to begin searching for a dental office that puts patient care first,” she said. “After finding an office that suits me best, I plan on working towards my BSDH and becoming certified to administer local anesthetic.” 

Alyssa also has some advice for students currently enrolled at her alma mater: 

“I would love for current North Paulding High School students to know Georgia Highlands makes following and achieving your dreams possible,” Alyssa said. “They provide all necessary resources, such as tutoring and emotional support. It may seem out of reach now, but if you take it one day at a time you can do anything. “ 

Georgia Highlands College will hold its 2024 commencement ceremonies on Thursday, May 9, at the Floyd Campus gym, 3175 Cedartown Hwy, Rome GA 30161. The 2024 commencement ceremonies will be held May 9 at 10:30AM and 6:30PM, with the Nursing pinning and commencement ceremony at 2:30PM. More information can be found on the commencement ceremony page regarding details, directions and campus guidelines.  

A livestream of the event will be available here. 


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