Steps to Become an Optician in Nevada
To become an optician in Nevada, you need to undergo some formal training for practice. This involves completing an approved optical educational program and completing an apprenticeship. The process of meeting the educational requirement to become an optician in Nevada is significantly different from the scenario in most of the other US states. The steps involved are outlined below.
Optician Salaries and Potential Pay
Optician salaries in Nevada vary from one city to the next. Large cities, such as Las Vegas, Henderson, Reno, and Paradise, are top-paying areas, with a median annual salary of about $43,000. Optician salaries in the large cities of Nevada range between $39,000 and $52,000. Besides location, factors that determine an optician’s salary in Nevada include level of education, number of years of experience, and size of company.
Nevada Education Requirements
In Nevada, an individual who wishes to become an optician must first apply for an apprentice license. Once the license is granted, the individual must fulfill both educational and apprentice requirements, in order to maintain the license in active status for one year. The Nevada Board of Dispensing Opticians offers two options in fulfilling the educational requirement to become an optician. You may opt to pursue an associate’s degree program in applied science for studies in ophthalmic dispensing. This requires completion of one year of apprenticeship, as well as a minimum of 1,000 hours of on-the-job training. Alternatively, you may pursue an optical education program on the theory of ophthalmic dispensing. This program must cover both optical and contact lens theory. This option requires completion of three years of apprenticeship, combined with a minimum of 2,000 hours of on-the-job training. Once granted an apprentice license, it remains current for one year, and must be renewed every January. Whichever training option you choose, proof of enrollment in the program must be provided within 90 days of receiving licensure.
Nevada Optician Licensing Requirements
The Nevada Board of Dispensing Opticians grants practicing licenses to apprentice licensees who have met all the requirements of their apprenticeship. All applicants for an ophthalmic dispenser license must meet a certification requirement. This involves taking the Nevada State Ophthalmic Dispenser Examination. Candidates who achieve a minimum score of 70 percent are issued with the Nevada ophthalmic dispenser license. The exam is administered twice each year, once in the spring, and once in the fall. Applicants for an license must also have taken the certification exam administered by the American Board of Opticianry (ABO) and National Contact Lens Examiners (NCLE).
Renewal of Licensure in Nevada
All practicing opticians in Nevada are required to renew their licenses before the 31st of January each year. At the time of request for licensure renewal, applicants must show proof of career progression during the previous year. This may involve completion of a board-approved educational program, completion of a specified amount of optical training, or passing the ABO-NCLE certification exam. The requirement to be met depends on the level of experience held by an optician.
Staying Current and Continuing Education
Licensed opticians are required to demonstrate career progression during each year of practice. The Nevada Board of Dispensing Opticians provides two options for earning continuing education credits. You may enroll for board-approved training programs or engage in professional training with approved providers. The board maintains a list of approved continuing education providers and courses.