There are lots of great reasons to become a dentist. You can be a community leader, be your own boss, control the balance between family and professional life and serve an ever-growing demand to provide a vital health service. The website Find the Best ranked the ten best dental schools in the U.S. based on federal funding, acceptance rates, admission test scores and student grades.

East

New York University’s College of Dentistry trains 1,800 students from 50 countries every year. The school runs the only dental school-based clinical research center in the U.S. with beds for 24-hour patient monitoring. The University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine is the only public dental school in Connecticut. Students can access 130 on-campus dental treatment rooms and two off-campus, eight-chair clinics for pediatric dentistry. The University of Pennsylvania Dental School has more than 10,000 alumni from 44 countries. The school has ten academic departments and an oral health research center.

Midwest

The University of Michigan School of Dentistry has five departments and the Sindecuse Museum, one of a handful of dental history museums in the world. The school has four research labs for orthodontic and pediatric dentistry. The School of Dentistry at the University of Minnesota is the only dental school in the northern tier of U.S. states between Wisconsin and the Pacific Northwest. Dentists at the school handle more than 89,000 patient-visits each year, and students must put in six to eight weeks of community outreach to graduate.

South

The University of North Carolina School of Dentistry offers a DDS degree as well as a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene, nine master’s programs and two Ph.D. programs. Its Dentistry in Service to Communities program visits 180 sites in and near North Carolina. The College of Dentistry at the University of Florida is the only publicly funded dental school in Florida. The school admits 80 to 90 students per year into its 16 degree and certificate programs.

West

The University of California, Los Angeles, School of Dentistry received 1,900 applications for 88 openings in its DDS program for the class of 2014. Dentists and students handled 120,000 patient visits, and the school received $20 million in federal funding. The University of California, San Francisco, School of Dentistry offers dual-degree DDS/MBA and DDS/Ph.D. programs. The five-area curriculum covers biomedical science, dental science, scientific methods, preventive and restorative dentistry and patient-centered care. The Ostrow School of Dentistry at the University of Southern California adopted a learner-centered curriculum in its DDS program in 2001. The school has educational outreach, health fairs and screening programs for the disadvantaged.