Vet Technician Training Program
How to Select the Best One Near Prescott Valley Arizona
Realizing your long term aspiration of working with and caring for pets by enrolling in a vet tech school near Prescott Valley AZ might initially seem like an overwhelming undertaking. But in order to succeed as a practicing veterinary technician, you need to first locate and ultimately enroll in a program that will provide the required training and education. And in order to pick the right one you must research and compare each of the schools you have placed on your short list. When looking for vet tech programs, the majority of students start by targeting those that are closest to their homes. When they have identified some area colleges, they find out which ones have the cheapest tuition and hone in on those. Although location and expense are significant concerns when comparing vet tech schools, they are not the only critical ones when making your evaluations. Job placement and intership programs as well as accreditation are just as important if not more so as location and cost. The main point is that before making a selection, you need to finish your due diligence and compare all relevant qualifications of the schools you are reviewing. We have furnished several in this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we'll discuss the different roles of vet techs and the training alternatives available.
IT TAKES JUST A FEW MINUTES TO START YOUR VET TECH CAREER BELOW
Vet Technician Degree Options
Among the initial decisions that you will need to make is if you want to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your determination might be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your training, but the primary determiner will most likely be which specialty interests you the most. What techs and assistants share in common is that they all work under the direct supervision of a practicing and licensed veterinarian. And while there are many duties that they can carry out within the Prescott Valley AZ veterinary practice or hospital, they can't prescribe drugs, diagnose ailments, or conduct surgical procedures. In those areas they may only provide assistance to a licensed vet. There are technologists and technicians that work away from the typical vet practice, for instance for zoos, animal shelters or police departments. Let's take a look at the responsibilities and training prerequisites for each specialty.
- Vet Assistants in almost all cases will have undergone a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a vet clinic or hospital, or by graduating from a certificate program at a vocational school or community college. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the execution of their duties. Generally they are not involved with more complicated activities, for example assisting with surgeries. A few of their regular duties may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing exam rooms and equipment, or controlling pets during examinations.
- Vet Technicians receive more extensive training compared with assistants and typically earn a 2 year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinarian counterparts of medical nurses, since their general job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from vet assistants is that they are included in more complicated tasks, for instance assisting with surgeries or providing medication. All states currently require vet techs pass a credentialing examination for either certification, registration or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to vet techs and basically perform the same job functions. They are mandated to obtain a Bachelor's Degree in veterinary technology, which usually takes 4 years. Therefore the only real distinction between a vet technologist and a technician is the technologist's higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more job opportunities, higher salaries and possible management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
Veterinary technicians and technologists may specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or emergency care. Many may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in Prescott Valley AZ labs or research facilities as well.
Things to Ask Veterinary Technician Colleges
At this point you probably have decided on which veterinarian degree that you would like to earn, and if you intend to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinary community colleges, trade and vocational schools in the Prescott Valley AZ area as well as across the United States, you must ask some relevant questions in order to fine tune your list of options. As we discussed in our opening, many potential students start by concentrating on location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously touched on other important qualifiers, for instance internship programs and accreditation. And naturally you need to enroll in a program that offers the specialty and degree that you want to earn. These and other factors are addressed in the checklist of questions that you should ask the veterinary technician schools that you are reviewing.
Is the Vet School Accredited? It's important that you confirm that the vet tech school you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As earlier mentioned, among the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a rigorous screening process that verifies you will obtain a quality education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since many programs are not available for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is in many cases a precondition for employment for many Prescott Valley AZ area veterinarian clinics and hospitals.
What is the College's Reputation? The vet college or trade school and program you enroll in must have an outstanding reputation within the veterinary community. You can initiate your due diligence by asking the colleges you are looking at for testimonials from the employers in their job assistance network. Other suggestions include looking on internet school rating websites and speaking with the school's accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the Arizona school licensing authority if there have been any complaints or infractions regarding your specific schools. As a final pointer, get in touch with some Prescott Valley AZ veterinarians that you may want to work for after you receive your training. Ask what they think about your school selections. They may even suggest one or more schools not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The best approach to obtain clinical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a professional setting. Find out if the colleges you are considering have internship programs set up with Prescott Valley AZ veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. The majority of veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many provide it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be valuable as far as the clinical training, but an internship may also help establish relationships in the local veterinarian community and assist in the search for a position after graduation.
Is Job Placement Offered? Getting a job after graduating from a veterinary technician college can be difficult without the assistance of a job placement program. To start with, find out what the graduation rates are for the programs you are reviewing. A low rate could mean that the teachers were ineffective at teaching the syllabus or that a number of students were unhappy with the program and quit. Next, check that the schools have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A high placement rate may indicate that the college has an exceptional reputation within the Prescott Valley AZ veterinary community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A low rate could indicate that the training is not highly thought of by employers or that the job placement program is ineffective at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are larger sized, you probably will get little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Prescott Valley AZ schools you are considering what their class teacher to student ratios are. You may also decide to sit in on some classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between students and teachers. Ask for evaluations from students concerning the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the instructors and determine what their qualifications are as well as their methods of teaching.
Where is the Campus Located? Of course, we already discussed location, but there are a couple of more points to consider on the subject. If you are going to drive to your veterinary technician classes from your Prescott Valley AZ home, you have to confirm that the driving time is compatible with your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won't be the same as the commute during rush hour traffic, especially if the school is located near or in a larger city. Also, if you do decide to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition costs particularly for state and community colleges. Of course taking classes online might be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the necessity for travel.
Is the Class Schedule Flexible? And finally, it's essential that you determine if the veterinary programs you are evaluating offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night near Prescott Valley AZ. Others might only be able to attend class in the morning or 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, sickness or family responsibilities. You might find that an online program is the ideal solution to fit your veterinary training into your active life.
Chosse the Right Prescott Valley Vet Technologist Program
Picking the right veterinary technician program is a critical first step to starting a rewarding career delivering treatment and care for pets and livestock. Students considering vet tech schools need to make their determination based on a number of key issues. Veterinary technicians and technologists work in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They typically handle administrative tasks and assist the veterinarian with the animals as needed. As we have discussed, it's essential that you enroll in a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the field. This applies to online vet tech schools as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for evaluating schools, you will be able to reduce your choices so that you can make your final choice. And by picking the best program, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a vet tech in Prescott Valley Arizona.