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Career and Education Opportunities for Licensed Dispensing Opticians in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Licensed dispensing opticians can find many career and educational opportunities in the Albuquerque, New Mexico area. The national trend for licensed dispensing opticians sees this job pool growing by about 13.4% over the next eight years. Licensed dispensing opticians generally design, measure, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification.

The income of a licensed dispensing optician is about $13 per hour or $28,100 annually on average in New Mexico. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $15 hourly or $32,810 yearly on average. Licensed dispensing opticians earn less than people working in the category of Ophthalmology generally in New Mexico and less than people in the Ophthalmology category nationally. Jobs in this field include: licensed optical dispenser, american board of opticianry certified master optician , and contact lens technician.

The Albuquerque area is home to seventeen schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Albuquerque where you can get a degree as a licensed dispensing optician. Given that the most common education level for licensed dispensing opticians is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a licensed dispensing optician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Licensed Dispensing Optician

Licensed Dispensing Optician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, licensed dispensing opticians design, measure, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. They also assist client with selecting frames.

Licensed dispensing opticians verify that finished lenses are ground to given requirements. They also obtain previous records of customers, or verify prescriptions with examining optometrists or ophthalmologists. Equally important, licensed dispensing opticians have to decide on clients' current lens prescriptions, when needed, using lensometers or lens analyzers and clients' eyeglasses. They are often called upon to sell goods such as contact lenses and other goods pertaining to eyes in general. They are expected to instruct clients in how to wear and care for eyeglasses. Finally, licensed dispensing opticians show customers how to insert and care for their contact lenses.

Every day, licensed dispensing opticians are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for licensed dispensing opticians to supervise the training of student opticians. They are often called upon to assemble eyeglasses by cutting and edging lenses, and fitting the lenses into frames. They also grind lens edges, or apply coatings to lenses. They are sometimes expected to fabricate lenses to meet prescription specifications. Somewhat less frequently, licensed dispensing opticians are also expected to verify that finished lenses are ground to given requirements.

Licensed dispensing opticians sometimes are asked to maintain records of customer prescriptions and payments. They also have to be able to assist clients in selecting frames in line with style and color, and insure that frames are coordinated with facial and eye measurements and optical prescriptions and heat or bend plastic or metal frames to modify eyeglasses to fit clients, using pliers and hands. And finally, they sometimes have to ready work orders and instructions for grinding lenses and fabricating eyeglasses.

Like many other jobs, licensed dispensing opticians must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Albuquerque include:

  • Dietary Technician. Assist dietitians in the provision of food service and nutritional programs. Under the supervision of dietitians, may plan and produce meals based on established guidelines, teach principles of food and nutrition, or counsel individuals.
  • Pharmacist Technician. Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, and record amounts and dosages of medications.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Licensed Dispensing Optician Training

Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute - Albuquerque, NM

Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, 9169 Coors Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87120-3101. Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute is a small school located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 451 students. Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute has an associate's degree program in Opticianry/Ophthalmic Dispensing Optician which graduated five students in 2008.


The National Opticianry Competency Certification: ABO and NCLE certification demonstrates to the public, your co-workers, and the industry that you are qualified and competent.

For more information, see the American Board of Opticianry National Contact Lens Examiners website.

Contact Lens Registry Certification: ABO and NCLE certification demonstrates to the public, your co-workers, and the industry that you are qualified and competent.

For more information, see the American Board of Opticianry National Contact Lens Examiners website.



Licensing agency: Board of Examiners in Optometry
Address: 2550 Cerrillos Road, Second Floor, Santa Fe, NM 87505

Phone: (505) 476-4945
Website: Board of Examiners in Optometry

LOCATION INFORMATION: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque, New Mexico photo by Debernardi

Albuquerque is situated in Bernalillo County, New Mexico. It has a population of over 521,999, which has grown by 16.4% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Albuquerque, 89, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Albuquerque cost $176,100 on average, which is above the state average. In 2008, 1,067 new homes were built in Albuquerque, down from 2,096 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Albuquerque are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and educational services. The average commute to work is about 20 minutes. More than 31.8% of Albuquerque residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.4%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Albuquerque is 6.9%, which is less than New Mexico's average of 7.5%.

The percentage of Albuquerque residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 54.7%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Heights Seventh Day Adventist Church, Hope Church and Baptist Student Union are some of the churches located in Albuquerque. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the Non-Charismatic Churches Independent.

Albuquerque is home to the Menaul School Historic District and the Volcano Ranch as well as Cutler Park and Eunice Kaloch Park. Shopping centers in the area include Del Norte Parkade Shopping Center, Westway Shopping Center and Winrock Shopping Center. Visitors to Albuquerque can choose from Winrock Inn-Best Western, New Mexico State Government - Health Department- Behavioral Health Services Divi and Motel 6 for temporary stays in the area.