How to Pick a Veterinary Assistant School near Greens Farms Connecticut
Achieving your long term dream of working with and helping pets by enrolling in a veterinarian program near Greens Farms CT could initially seem like an overwhelming undertaking. After all, you have to locate and enroll in a college that will provide the necessary training to ensure that you can be successful as a vet technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you approach reviewing and comparing schools so that you can make the proper choice? Many future students begin their due diligence process by looking for campuses that are near their homes. When they have located some nearby schools, they ascertain which ones have the lowest tuition and focus on those. Although cost and location are significant factors when evaluating vet tech schools, they are by no means the only critical ones when making your evaluations. Qualifiers such as accreditation and internship programs 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 a final decision. We have presented several within this article to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll talk about the varied duties of vet techs and assistants and the training alternatives offered.
The Job of a Veterinary Assistant and Tech
Among the initial decisions that you will need to make is whether you desire to train as a vet technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your decision may be based on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your education, but the main determiner will probably be which specialty interests you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they all work under the immediate supervision of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And while there are a number of jobs that they can carry out within the Greens Farms CT veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose ailments, or perform surgeries. In those areas they can only provide assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technicians and technologists that work outside of the standard veterinarian practice, for instance for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the job functions and training requirements for each specialization.
- Vet Assistants in the majority of cases will have undergone a formal training program, either as an apprentice or intern in a practice, or by finishing a certificate program at a community college or vocational school near Greens Farms CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the completion of their duties. Usually they are not involved with more complex tasks, such as assisting with surgical procedures. A few of their typical responsibilities may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing exam rooms and equipment, or handling pets during exams.
- Vet Technicians get more advanced training compared with assistants and usually acquire a two year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the veterinary counterparts of medical nurses, since their fundamental job function is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from vet assistants is that they are included in more complicated duties, for instance assisting with surgical procedures or administering medication. All states presently mandate that veterinary technicians pass a credentialing examination for either certification, registration or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are similar to veterinary technicians and essentially carry out the same work functions. They are required to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which usually requires four years. So the only real difference between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more career options, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are additionally mandated to pass a credentialing exam for either certification, registration or licensing.
Vet techs and technologists can specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or urgent care. A number may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in laboratories or Greens Farms CT area research facilities also.
Online Veterinary Programs
An option that might make sense for those with a busy lifestyle or who are working full time while going to veterinary school is to enroll in an online training program. Since the classes are offered through the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is available. The course of study is taught using several methods, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of veterinary tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can usually be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Greens Farms CT veterinary practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in many instances decrease the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary expenses, for instance for traveling and study materials, may be lower compared to more traditional classroom courses. Just make sure that the program that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting organization. With the online courses and the clinical training, everything is furnished for a complete education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more independent fashion, an online veterinary tech or assistant school may be the perfect choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technician Programs
At this point you should have selected which veterinarian credential that you want to earn, and if you prefer to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinary community colleges, vocational and technical schools in Connecticut as well as across the United States, you should ask some qualifying questions in order to narrow down your list of options. As we pointed out in our introduction, many future students start by concentrating on location and tuition expense. But we have already pointed out other significant qualifiers, which include internship programs and accreditation. And of course you need to select a college that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are covered in the checklist of questions that you should ask the Greens Farms CT veterinary assistant and tech colleges that you are reviewing.
Is the Vet School Accredited? It’s essential that you confirm that the veterinary assistant or technician college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously mentioned, among the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a demanding screening process that ensures you will get a superior education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are requesting a student loan or financial assistance, since a large number of programs are not available for non-accredited schools. Last, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is in many cases a prerequisite for employment for many Greens Farms CT veterinarian practices and hospitals.
What is the School’s Reputation? The veterinary trade school or college and program you enroll in must have an exceptional reputation within the vet community. You can begin your due diligence by asking the colleges you are reviewing for references from the employers in their job assistance network. Other tips include checking with internet school rating websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing department if there have been any complaints or infractions concerning your specific schools. As a final suggestion, phone some Greens Farms CT veterinary clinics that you might want to work for after you go through your training. Find out what they think about your school choices. They might even recommend some schools not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The best means to get practical hands on training as a vet assistant or technician is to work in a medical setting. Ask if the programs you are looking at have internship programs set up with area veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. The majority of veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many furnish it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be valuable as far as the practical training, but an internship may also help build connections in the local Greens Farms CT veterinarian community and assist in the search for a job after graduation.
Is there a Job Assistance Program? Searching for a job after graduating from a veterinary tech or assistant program can be difficult without the assistance of a job placement program. First, ask what the graduation rates are for the schools you are reviewing. A low rate could mean that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the syllabus or that a number of students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the colleges have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may indicate that the Greens Farms CT program has an exceptional reputation within the vet community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate might indicate that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job placement program is ineffective at placing students.
How Large are the Classes? If the classes are bigger, you probably will get little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Solicit from the Greens Farms CT programs you are looking at what their class student to teacher ratios are. You may also decide to participate in some classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and teachers. Ask for feedback from students regarding the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and find out what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.
Where is the College Located? Of course, we previously talked about location, but there are a couple of more points to consider on the subject. If you are planning to drive to your vet technician classes from home or work, you have to make certain that the driving time fits into your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to check out the route won’t be the same as the commute during rush hour traffic, particularly if the Greens Farms CT campus is located close by or within a larger city. In addition, if you do decide to attend a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition costs especially for community and state colleges. On the other hand, taking online classes might be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and minimize the necessity for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And finally, it’s imperative that you ascertain if the Connecticut vet colleges you are exploring offer class times flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For example, a number of students continue to work full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Some may only be able to attend classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Make sure that the class times you need are available near Greens Farms CT prior to enrolling. Also, find out if you can make up classes that you might miss due to work, sickness or family emergencies. You might discover that an online program is the best way to fit your vet training into your hectic life.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Veterinary Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary job, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters typically ask veterinary prospects is "What made you decide on veterinary care as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a vet tech, but also what qualities and skills you possess that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to veterinary care, as well as a significant number of typical interview questions, so you need to ready several ideas about how you would like to address them. Given that there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you along with the strengths you have that make you an excellent vet tech and the leading candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but jot down some concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
Enroll in the Ideal Vet Tech School near Greens Farms CT
Selecting the appropriate vet technician program is a critical first step to beginning a rewarding career providing care and treatment for animals. Future students thinking about veterinary tech or assistant colleges need to make their selection based on multiple key issues. Vet assistants, techs and technologists are employed in vet clinics, animal hospitals and animal shelters. They typically handle administrative tasks and assist the veterinarian with the animals when needed. As we have discussed, it’s essential that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the profession. This applies to online vet tech programs as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make your final selection. And by choosing the ideal college, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, tech or technologist in Greens Farms CT.
A Little Bit About Greens Farms CT
Greens Farms Academy
Greens Farms Academy (GFA) is a PreK-12 independent preparatory co-educational day school in the Greens Farms section of Westport, Connecticut, drawing 695 students from numerous towns of central southern Fairfield County. Greens Farms Academy is located on a campus near Long Island Sound, a salt marsh and an Audubon woodland. Some of the buildings that make up the school were previously part of a family estate belonging to the Vanderbilts. Since being converted to a school, multiple buildings have been added to the original estate, including a new section for the Upper and Middle schools.
Greens Farms Academy was an all woman's preparatory school when it was first established in 1925. The school converted to a co-educational system in later years, but still keeps many of its traditions.
Coordinates: 41°07′07″N 73°18′51″W / 41.118737°N 73.314123°W / 41.118737; -73.314123
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