Best Veterinary Tech Programs 2021
Top 5 Veterinary Technician Schools and Programs
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* How long does it take to complete a veterinary technology program?Technicians can earn a degree in two years. Technologists generally need fouryears of study to qualify for licensure. * Do I need a license to be a veterinary technician?Technicians in most states must meet AVMA’s licensure requirements. Thisincludes specific coursework and an exam. * Where do veterinary technicians work?Technicians work in private veterinary clinics, animal hospitals,laboratories, and university research facilities. * What’s the difference between a veterinarian and a veterinary technician?Veterinarians must complete a doctorate in veterinary medicine. Veterinarytechnicians only need a two-year degree to qualify for most jobs.
Career and Salary Outlook for Veterinary Technicians
* * *Veterinary technicians and technologists may follow many career paths. Manywork in private veterinary clinics or animal hospitals. Others assistresearchers in private laboratories or at university research facilities.Technicians and technologists conduct tests, prepare animals for surgicalprocedures, and administer medication. Some specialize in areas such asdentistry, anesthesia, or zoological medicine. The BLS projects strong growth for vet techs from 2019-2029. Pay forveterinary technicians varies by location, experience, and specialty.Technicians who work in research positions earn more than those in clinicalpositions.Source: BLS
Accreditation for Veterinary Technology Programs
Prospective vet tech students should make sure to attend an accredited school.Top schools hold regional accreditation. This designation comes from credibleorganizations such as the Higher Learning Commission. The best veterinary technology programs also hold accreditation from AVMA.This organization makes sure veterinary professionals gain the proper skills.AVMA also ensures that technicians stay current in the field throughcontinuing education.The best veterinary technology programs hold accreditation from AVMA. Thisorganization maintains standards for veterinary professions to ensure thattechnicians gain the proper skills. AVMA also ensures that technicians staycurrent in the field through continuing education.
Veterinary Technician Certification
* * *Individual state regulations vary. Still, each state requires vet techs togain licensure or certification. The American Association of Veterinary StateBoards oversees this certification process. The association verifies thatcandidates complete AVMA-accredited programs. Certification establishes that atechnician can practice their profession.Most candidates also need to take the Veterinary Technician NationalExamination (VTNE) to qualify for a job in the field. This exam covers animalcare and nursing, anesthesia, and laboratory procedures.
Courses in a Veterinary Technology Program
* * *Most vet tech programs entail classes in anatomy, physiology, and chemistry.They also offer specialized courses. Specialized subjects include veterinarydentistry, pharmacology, and animal husbandry.Learners study basic medical services, like administering anesthesia orconducting diagnostic testing. Classes teach students to apply criticalthinking and problem-solving skills to medical situations. Coursework teacheslearners to use common veterinary technologies such as X-ray machines.The courses below are a sample of those offered in veterinary technologyprograms.Veterinary Pharmacology This course covers the development and use of various drugs in veterinary medicine. It prepares technicians to understand antibiotics, antiseptics, and other common veterinary drugs. This course is especially useful, since technicians must administer medications in clinical settings.Introduction to Veterinary Technology Most veterinary technology programs offer an introductory course that surveys the field. The class focuses on key terminology in veterinary medicine. Learners study basic aspects of animal reproduction. They also explore animal husbandry and behavior and preventative care. The course also teaches students the history of the field.Veterinary Anesthesiology Many of the best veterinary technology degrees include a course on anesthesiology. This class helps students understand how practitioners administer anesthesia to animals. The course also teaches students how to operate common anesthetic technologies.Veterinary Dentistry In this course, students learn the key components of veterinary dental care. They study preventative strategies and learn how to identify common dental problems. The class also prepares technicians to assist veterinarians with dental surgeries. Dentistry courses often focus primarily on small and companion animals.Veterinary Clinical Experience Veterinary technology programs must incorporate at least one clinical experience. This is necessary to meet AVMA’s accreditation standards. To meet this requirement, students may work in a research laboratory . They may also intern at a private clinic. Learners may also work at an animal hospital. Clinical experiences prepare students to take on the various responsibilities of the profession. Many schools ask for more than one clinical experience.
Scholarships for Veterinary Technology Students
Veterinary technology students may qualify for several scholarships. Majororganizations like the American Kennel Club sponsor these opportunities. Suchscholarships provide support for students enrolled in AVMA-accreditedprograms. Students may seek additional scholarships from their school.Who Can Apply: The International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematoriessponsors this scholarship. Vet tech students in their second year of an AVMA-accredited program may apply. Applicants must submit a 250-300 word essay. Amount: $1,000Who Can Apply: The American Kennel Club and The Hartz Mountain Corporation co-sponsor this scholarship. It awards funds to students enrolled in AVMA-accredited programs. The organizations evaluate applicants based on academicachievement and extracurricular activity. Amount: $1,000 or $2,000Who Can Apply: Oxbow Animal Health offers scholarships to veterinarytechnology students. Candidates must show a strong interest in small or exoticanimals. Students submit a resume and one recommendation letter. They muststudy at an AVMA-accredited program. Amount: $500Who Can Apply: The Association of Schools Advancing Health Professions (ASAHP)offers this scholarship. This award serves students enrolled in various healthprofessions, including veterinary medicine. Students enrolled at any ASAHPmember school may apply. Students of any academic level may apply. Amount: $1,000
Best Veterinary Tech Programs 2021
* * *The following rankings highlight 5 of the best veterinary technology degrees. 1. Located in Miami, Florida, MDC offers an associate in veterinary technology degree that prepares students for a variety of veterinary healthcare careers. Graduates can work in clinics, zoos, and research centers.The 73-credit curriculum includes coursework in veterinary pathology, labprocedures, and animal nursing skills. Students can also take specializedcourses in fields such as avian and exotic pet medicine. Students in MDC’sveterinary technology program complete some classes online, and they obtainmore than 400 hours of clinical experience.Most students complete the program in about two years. Florida does notrequire veterinary technicians to hold licensure, but MDC graduates qualify totake the Veterinary Technician National Exam. Applicants undergo an interviewprocess and background check.Miami Dade College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association ofColleges and Schools Commissions on Colleges. 2. Portland Community CollegePCC offers an associate in veterinary technology degree at its Rock Creekcampus. The program prepares students to work as certified veterinarytechnicians. Learners develop surgical, medical, laboratory, and interpersonalskills while completing coursework and clinical experiences.The program requires about two years of studies. Degree-seekers learn aboutsmall-animal diseases, animal nutrition, and veterinary pharmacology. Studentsreceive clinical training in hospital settings and in wildlife preserves andzoos. PCC contains a farm, kennel, and cattery. Graduates qualify to take theVeterinary Technician National Exam.Applicants must submit transcripts and a recommendation letter, and they mustparticipate in an interview. The college allows students to apply generaleducation transfer credits toward the veterinary technology degree.Portland Community College is accredited by the Northwest Commission onColleges and Universities.Becoming a Lab Technician: Job Description & Salary Info
Pros and Cons of a Lab Technician Career
Medical and biological lab technicians work to prepare and execute tests todiagnose diseases or research medical advances in laboratories. Check outthese pros and cons of a lab technician career:Pros of a Lab Technician Career — Minimum 1-2 years of education for medical lab work* Specializations available* Can work in hospitals, private labs, university departments and governmentagencies* Opportunity to improve people’s lives through research* Cons of a Lab Technician Career — Risk of contamination or exposure to biological hazards* Possible evening or weekend hours at 24-hour medical facilities* Licensing or certification required by some states and employers* Additional schooling required for advancement* Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Medical Lab Technicians
Generally, workers with an associate’s degree in medical lab technology arecalled technicians, while those with bachelor’s degrees are calledtechnologists. The National Accreditation Agency for Clinical LaboratorySciences (NAACLS) accredits medical lab technology programs at all levels.These programs teach you basic lab techniques both in classroom settings andin practical lab environments. After completing a program, you will beeligible for national certification and state licensure.
Biological technicians typically hold a bachelor’s degree in biology oranother life science area. Biology degree programs at 4-year universities andcolleges often include courses that have a lab component, and this experiencecan help prepare you to work in a lab. You may also choose to take somecomputer science courses in order to understand and feel comfortable with thecomputerized lab equipment you may use on the job.
Other Careers to Consider
Chemical technicians work in labs assisting chemists with various experiments.To begin working as a chemical technician, you need to complete an associate’sdegree program in chemical technology and receive some on-the-job training.The BLS reported in May 2011 that chemical technicians had a median annualwage of about $42,000.If you are good with your hands but aren’t sure chemical or biological labwork is for you, you might want to think about a dental laboratory techniciancareer. Dental lab techs create crowns, bridges and dentures from impressionsof patients’ teeth. Many dental lab techs learn their skills on the job, butthere are some 2-year formal training programs available. The BLS reported inMay 2011 that dental laboratory technicians had a median annual wage of about$36,000.Biological TechnicianBiological technicians help biological and medical scientists conductlaboratory tests and experiments.