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What to Ask Veterinary Technician Colleges
By now you probably have selected which veterinarian credential that you want to obtain, and if you intend to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are an abundance of vet community colleges, trade and vocational schools in the Troy AL area and across the United States, you must ask some relevant questions to help fine tune your list of options. As we mentioned in our introduction, many future students start by prioritizing location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously mentioned other important qualifiers, for example internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you need to select a program that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are reviewed in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the veterinary technician schools that you are looking at.
Is the Veterinary Program Accredited? It's important that you make sure that the veterinary technician college you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously discussed, one of the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a rigorous review process that verifies you will get a quality education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are applying for a student loan or financial assistance, since a large number of programs are not obtainable for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited program is in many cases a requirement for employment for many Troy AL area veterinary practices and hospitals.
What is the School's Reputation? The veterinarian college or trade school and program you select should have an exceptional reputation within the veterinarian community. You can start your due diligence by asking the colleges you are interested in for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other suggestions include looking on online school rating websites and speaking with the school's accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Alabama school licensing department if there have been any grievances or violations regarding your targeted schools. As a final pointer, phone some Troy AL veterinary clinics that you may wish to work for after you go through your training. Find out what they think of your school selections. They may even suggest one or more schools not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The best approach to get practical hands on experience as a vet tech is to work in a medical environment. Ask if the colleges you are considering have internship programs established with Troy AL veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. Almost all veterinary medicine programs require clinical training and many furnish it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the practical training, but an internship can also help establish associations in the local veterinarian community and assist in the search for employment after graduation.
Is there a Job Placement Program? Getting a job after graduating from a veterinary technician program may be challenging without the help of a job placement program. To begin with, ask what the graduation rates are for the programs you are evaluating. A lower rate could signify that the instructors were unqualified to teach the curriculum or that a number of students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. Next, check that the schools have a job assistance program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may indicate that the school has an exceptional reputation within the Troy AL veterinarian community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A low rate may indicate that the training is not well thought of by employers or that the job placement program is a failure at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are larger in size, you most likely will receive little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Troy AL programs you are researching what their class teacher to student ratios are. You may also want to attend some classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between instructors and students. Get evaluations from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and determine what their backgrounds are as well as their approaches to teaching.
Where is the School Located? Of course, we previously discussed location, but there are a couple of more points to consider on the topic. If you are going to commute to your vet tech classes from your Troy AL home, you have to confirm that the driving time fits into your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won't be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, particularly if the campus is located in or close by a large city. In addition, if you do opt to enroll in a college in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition charges particularly for state and community colleges. Of course taking classes online could be an option that will provide you with more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.
Is the Class Schedule Flexible? And finally, it's important that you determine if the veterinary colleges you are considering offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For instance, many students continue to work full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night near Troy AL. Some may only be able to attend class in the morning or later in the afternoon. Make sure that the class times you need are available before enrolling. Also, find out if you can make up classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family responsibilities. You may discover that an online school is the ideal way to fit your veterinary training into your hectic life.