How to Enroll In a Vet Tech Program near New Canaan Connecticut
Realizing your long term goal of working with and helping pets by enrolling in a vet college near New Canaan CT might initially feel like an overwhelming task. After all, you need to search for and enroll in a school that will provide the appropriate training to ensure that you can succeed as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you approach evaluating and contrasting colleges so that you can make the correct choice? Many aspiring students start their due diligence process by looking for colleges that are close to their homes. Once they have found some local schools, they ascertain which ones have the most affordable tuition and hone in on those. Although expense and location are significant considerations when comparing vet tech schools, they are by no means the only important ones when making your comparisons. Qualifiers such as accreditation and internship programs should be evaluated as well. The main idea is that there are questions you need to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are considering before you make an ultimate selection. We have presented several in this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll explore the varied duties of veterinary assistants and techs and the training options offered.
The Role of a Veterinary Tech and Assistant
One of the first decisions that you will need to make is whether you plan to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your determination may be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your education, but the main determiner will most likely be which specialty appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants share in common is that they all work under the immediate direction of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are a number of tasks that they can carry out within the New Canaan CT veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose health issues, or perform surgical procedures. In those areas they may only provide support to a licensed veterinarian. There are technologists and technicians that work exclusive of the standard vet practice, for example for animal shelters, zoos or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the job functions and education requirements for each specialty.
- Vet Assistants in almost all instances will have undergone a structured training program, either as an apprentice or intern in a practice, or by completing a certificate program at a community college or vocational school near New Canaan CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the veterinarians and vet techs in the execution of their duties. Normally they are not involved with more involved tasks, for example assisting with surgical procedures. A few of their regular responsibilities may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing exam rooms and equipment, or controlling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians undergo more advanced training in contrast to assistants and typically obtain a 2 year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their basic job function is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from vet assistants is that they are involved in more complex duties, for instance assisting with surgical procedures or administering medicine. All states presently mandate that veterinary technicians pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to veterinary techs and essentially perform the same work functions. They are mandated to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which generally takes 4 years to complete. Therefore 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 work opportunities, increased salaries and possible management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing exam for either certification, registration or licensing.
Veterinary technicians and technologists may specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or emergency care. Some may earn certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in laboratories or New Canaan CT area research facilities also.
Veterinary Online Programs
An approach that may be a solution for those with a hectic schedule or who are working full-time while going to veterinary college is to enroll in an online training program. Since the classes are made available via the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The syllabus is taught using several methods, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of veterinary technician and technologist degrees require clinical training, that part can typically be completed as an internship or work study program at an area New Canaan CT veterinarian clinic or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances lower the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary expenditures, such as for commuting and study supplies, can be cheaper compared to more traditional classroom courses. Just make certain that the program that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting agency. With the online courses and the practical training, everything is furnished for a complete education. So if you are disciplined enough to learn in this more independent manner, an online veterinary tech or assistant program may be the perfect option for you.
Things to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technologist Schools
At this point you probably have decided on which veterinary certificate or degree that you want to earn, and if you intend to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinarian community colleges, vocational and trade schools in Connecticut as well as across the Country, you should ask some important questions to help narrow down your list of alternatives. As we pointed out in our introduction, many prospective students start by concentrating on location and the cost of tuition. But we have already touched on other significant qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And naturally you want to enroll in a college that offers the degree and specialty that you would like to earn. These and other factors are addressed in the checklist of questions that you should ask the New Canaan CT vet technician and assistant schools that you are looking at.
Is the Vet Program Accredited? It’s essential that you verify that the vet tech or assistant school you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously discussed, one of the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a thorough review process that ensures you will receive a quality education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are requesting a student loan or financial assistance, since many programs are not available for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited program is in many cases a precondition for employment for many New Canaan CT vet clinics and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The veterinary vocational school or college and program you select should have an exceptional reputation within the veterinarian community. You can initiate your due diligence by asking the colleges you are looking at for references from the employers in their job assistance network. Other pointers include looking on internet school rating websites and contacting the school’s accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing department if there have been any complaints or violations relating to your targeted schools. As a final suggestion, contact some New Canaan CT vet clinics that you might want to work for after you receive your training. Find out what they think about your school choices. They may even recommend some colleges not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The best means to obtain practical hands on experience as a vet assistant or tech is to work in a medical setting. Find out if the colleges you are looking at have internship programs arranged with local veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate clinical training and a large number provide it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the practical training, but an internship can also help build relationships in the local New Canaan CT vet community and help in the search for a job after graduation.
Is Job Placement Provided? Getting a job after graduating from a veterinary technician or assistant school may be challenging without the help of a job placement program. First, find out what the graduation rates are for the schools you are evaluating. A low rate could suggest that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the curriculum or that a number of students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the schools have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A high placement rate may mean that the New Canaan CT program has an outstanding reputation within the vet community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate could mean that the training is not highly 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 larger sized, you probably will receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Request from the New Canaan CT programs you are considering what their class student to teacher ratios are. You might also decide to attend some classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and teachers. Get feedback from students concerning the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and determine what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.
Where is the Campus Located? Yes, we already talked about location, but there are a few more points to make on the topic. If you are planning to commute to your veterinary technician classes from work or home, you need to make certain that the commuting 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, especially if the New Canaan CT college is located in or near a larger city. Also, if you do decide to attend 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. On the other hand, taking online classes might be an option that will give you more flexibility and minimize the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And finally, it’s imperative that you ascertain if the Connecticut vet schools you are considering offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others may only be able to go to class in the morning or in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you need are offered near New Canaan CT prior to enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family issues. You might find that an online program is the ideal solution to fit your vet education into your busy life.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Veterinary Technician?When preparing to interview for a veterinary position, it's helpful to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that recruiters often ask veterinary applicants is "What made you select veterinary care as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the private reasons you might have for being a vet tech, but additionally what attributes and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to veterinary care, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should organize a number of strategies about how you would like to answer them. Given that there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the talents you have that make you an exceptional vet tech and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down several ideas and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
Choose the Best Vet Technologist Training Program near New Canaan CT
Enrolling in the ideal veterinary technician program is an important first step to beginning a gratifying career providing treatment and care for animals. Future students thinking about veterinary tech or assistant schools need to make their determination based on several key issues. Veterinary techs, assistants and technologists are employed in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They commonly handle administrative duties and assist the veterinarian with the animals when needed. As we have discussed, it’s imperative that you pick a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the profession. This applies to online vet tech colleges as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to reduce your options so that you can make your final choice. And by selecting the best college, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist in New Canaan CT.
A Little Bit About New Canaan CT
New Canaan, Connecticut
New Canaan /nuː ˈkeɪnən/ is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States, 12 miles (19 km) northeast of Greenwich, 36 miles (58 km) west of New Haven and 48 miles (77 km) northeast of New York City. The population was 19,738 according to the 2010 census. In 2008 New Canaan had the highest median family income in the country.
Considered part of Connecticut's Gold Coast, New Canaan is known for its excellent Connecticut public school system, its wide range of architecture from the Harvard Five modern homes to historic New England colonials and farms, as well as many stately mansions and tended estates, plus a signature town center with premiere shopping, classic boutiques, an elaborate display of lights for the Holidays.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.5 square miles (58 km2), of which 22.1 square miles (57 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), or 1.56%, is water. New Canaan is the only municipality on the Connecticut Panhandle that does not border the coast. Such proximity to New York City proved worthy of its own connection to the New Haven Railroad, being the only town to do so. New Canaan station and Talmadge Hill station are both on the New Canaan Branch of the New Haven Line, and transfer is possible in Stamford south to Manhattan. Many New Canaan residents commute to New York regularly, with travel time to Grand Central Terminal approximately 70 minutes. New Canaan is also heavily served by the historic Merritt Parkway, as the third municipality when driving to Connecticut from New York City.
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