How to Select a Vet Tech Program near Lone Pine California
Fulfilling your lifelong dream of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a vet college near Lone Pine CA may initially seem like an overwhelming task. After all, you need to search for and enroll in a school that will deliver the necessary training so that you can be successful as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. But just how do you go about analyzing and comparing programs so that you can make the proper choice? Many future students launch their due diligence process by looking for schools that are near their homes. After they have found some local schools, they ascertain which ones have the lowest tuition and hone in on those. Although location and expense are significant considerations when comparing vet tech schools, they are not the only significant ones when making your assessments. Qualifications such as internship programs and accreditation need to be evaluated also. The point is that there are questions you should be asking the veterinary tech programs you are considering before you make an ultimate selection. We have furnished several within this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll discuss the varied roles of vet techs and assistants and the training alternatives offered.
The Responsibilities of a Veterinary Tech and Assistant
One of the first decisions that you will have to make is if you desire to train as a vet technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your decision might be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your training, but the principal factor will undoubtedly be which specialization interests you the most. What vet techs and assistants share in common is that they both work under the direct direction of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And although there are many functions that they can perform within the Lone Pine CA veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medications, diagnose health issues, or conduct surgical procedures. In those areas they may only provide support to a licensed vet. There are technologists and technicians that work outside of the conventional veterinarian practice, for example for zoos, animal shelters or police departments. Let’s take a look at the duties and education requirements for each specialization.
- Vet Assistants in almost all cases will have completed a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a practice, or by finishing a certificate program at a community college or vocational school near Lone Pine CA. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet techs in the completion of their duties. Normally they are not involved with more complicated activities, for example assisting with surgeries. Some of their usual duties may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning examination rooms and equipment, or handling pets during examinations.
- Vet Technicians get more advanced training compared with assistants and normally obtain a 2 year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their fundamental job function is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from veterinary assistants is that they are involved in more complicated duties, for example assisting with surgeries or providing medicine. All states presently mandate that vet techs pass a credentialing examination for either certification, registration or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to vet technicians and essentially perform the same work functions. They are mandated to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which generally takes four years. So the main difference between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more career opportunities, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing exam for either certification, registration or licensing.
Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or urgent care. A number may obtain certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or Lone Pine CA area research facilities as well.
Online Veterinary Colleges
An option that may make sense for those with a hectic lifestyle or who are working full-time while attending veterinarian school is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are offered by means of the internet, students can study on their own schedule wherever a computer is accessible. The course of study is taught using several methods, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of veterinary tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that segment can usually be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Lone Pine CA veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances decrease the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary costs, for instance for travel and study materials, can be cheaper compared to more standard classroom courses. Just make certain that the online school that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting organization. With the online classes and the practical training, everything is furnished for a complete education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more independent mode, an online veterinary tech or assistant program may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technician Degree Programs
At this point you should have selected which veterinarian credential that you wish to earn, and if you intend to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are an abundance of veterinarian community colleges, vocational and technical schools in California and across the USA, you need to ask some relevant questions in order to narrow down your list of alternatives. As we mentioned in our introduction, many prospective students start by focusing on location and tuition expense. But we have already mentioned other significant qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And of course you want to choose a program that offers the specialty and degree that you would like to earn. These and other qualifications are covered in the list of questions that you need to ask the Lone Pine CA veterinary technician and assistant schools that you are considering.
Is the Vet School Accredited? It’s important that you verify that the veterinary assistant or tech college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As earlier discussed, 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 review process that confirms you will receive a quality education. Also, accreditation is important if you are applying for a student loan or financial assistance, since many programs are not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited program is frequently a prerequisite for employment for a number of Lone Pine CA veterinarian clinics and hospitals.
What is the Program’s Reputation? The vet college or vocational school and program you choose should have an exceptional reputation within the vet community. You can start your due diligence by asking the colleges you are interested in for endorsements from the employers in their job assistance network. Other pointers include looking on online school rating websites and contacting the school’s accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the California school licensing department if there have been any complaints or infractions relating to your specific schools. As a final tip, phone some Lone Pine CA veterinary clinics that you might wish to work for after you receive your training. Find out what they think about your school selections. They might even suggest one or more schools not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The most effective way to obtain practical hands on experience as a vet assistant or tech is to work in a medical environment. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have internship programs established with regional veterinarians, vet hospitals or practices. Most veterinary medicine programs require clinical training and a large number provide it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial as far as the practical training, but an internship may also help build connections in the local Lone Pine CA veterinary community and help in the search for a job after graduation.
Is Job Placement Offered? Finding a job after graduating from a veterinary assistant or technician college may be challenging without the help of a job placement program. To begin with, find out what the graduation rates are for the colleges you are evaluating. A low rate may signify that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that some students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. Next, check that the colleges have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may signify that the Lone Pine CA school has an exceptional reputation within the veterinary community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate might indicate that the training is not well thought of by employers or that the job assistance program is a failure at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are bigger, you most likely will get little or no personalized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Lone Pine CA schools you are considering what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You might also want to sit in on a couple of classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between teachers and students. Get feedback from students regarding the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the instructors and find out what their backgrounds are as well as their methods of teaching.
Where is the College Located? Of course, we previously covered location, but there are several more points to make on the topic. If you are going to drive to your vet technician classes from work or home, you have to make certain that the commuting time fits into your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, especially if the Lone Pine CA school is located close by or within a larger city. Also, if you do choose to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition costs particularly for state and community colleges. On the other hand, attending online classes might be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And finally, it’s imperative that you determine if the California vet colleges you are evaluating offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For example, many students continue to work full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Some might only be able to go to classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you need are available near Lone Pine CA prior to enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make up classes that you might miss due to work, sickness or family issues. You may find that an online college is the best solution to fit your veterinary education into your hectic life.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Vet Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary position, it's helpful to consider questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers often ask veterinary applicants is "What drove you to select veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for being a vet tech, but also what qualities and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating primarily to veterinary care, as well as a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare several strategies about how you would like to address them. Since there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the abilities you have that make you an excellent vet tech and the leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Enroll in the Right Veterinary Technician Program near Lone Pine CA
Choosing the appropriate vet assistant or tech program is a crucial first step to beginning a rewarding career providing treatment and care for animals. Potential students looking into vet assistant or tech colleges must make their determination based on several key factors. Veterinary techs, assistants and technologists are employed in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They usually handle administrative duties and assist the veterinarian with the animal patients when needed. As we have covered, it’s essential that you choose a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the field. This goes for online vet tech colleges as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to reduce your options so that you can make your final decision. And by picking the best school, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, tech or technologist in Lone Pine CA.
A Little Bit About Lone Pine CA
Lone Pine, California
Lone Pine is a census designated place (CDP) in Inyo County, California, United States. Lone Pine is located 16 miles (26 km) south-southeast of Independence, at an elevation of 3727 feet (1136 m). The population was 2,035 at the 2010 census, up from 1,655 at the 2000 census. The town is located in the Owens Valley, near the Alabama Hills. From possible choices of urban, rural, and frontier, the Census Bureau identifies this area as "frontier". The local hospital, Southern Inyo Hospital, offers standby emergency services. On March 26, 1872, the very large Lone Pine earthquake destroyed most of the town and killed 27 of its 250 to 300 residents.
The Paiute people inhabited the Owens Valley area from prehistoric times. These early inhabitants are known to have established trading routes which extended to the Pacific Central Coast, delivering materials originating in the Owens Valley to such tribes as the Chumash.
A cabin was built here during the winter of 1861–62. A settlement developed over the following two years. The Lone Pine post office opened in 1870.
More Cities of Interest in California