How to Find the Right Veterinary Assistant College near New Fairfield Connecticut
Achieving your lifelong dream of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a veterinary program near New Fairfield CT may at first feel like an overwhelming undertaking. After all, you have to locate and enroll in a program that will provide the necessary training to ensure that you can be successful as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. But just how do you go about analyzing and comparing colleges so that you can make the ideal selection? Many aspiring students start their due diligence process by looking for colleges that are near their homes. Once they have found some local colleges, they find out which ones have the lowest tuition and hone in on those. Although location and cost are important concerns when evaluating vet tech schools, they are not the only important ones when making your comparisons. Factors such as internship programs and accreditation should be considered as well. The main idea is that there are questions you need to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are reviewing before you make a final selection. We have provided several in this article in order to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll go over the different duties of veterinary techs and assistants and the training options available.
The Job of a Vet Assistant and Tech
Among the first decisions that you will need to make is whether you want to train as a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist. Part of your decision may be based on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your education, but the principal determiner will undoubtedly be which specialty interests you the most. What vet techs and assistants share in common is that they both work under the immediate supervision of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are numerous jobs that they can carry out within the New Fairfield CT veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose health issues, or carry out surgeries. In those areas they can only furnish assistance to a licensed vet. There are technicians and technologists that work exclusive of the standard vet practice, for instance for zoos, animal shelters or police departments. Let’s take a look at the job functions and training requirements for each specialization.
- Vet Assistants in the majority of instances will have gone through a formal training program, either as an apprentice or intern in a practice, or by completing a certificate program at a trade school or community college near New Fairfield 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 complicated tasks, for example assisting with surgical procedures. Some of their typical responsibilities may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing examination rooms and equipment, or controlling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians receive more extensive training compared with assistants and generally earn a two year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the vet counterparts of medical nurses, since their basic job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from veterinary assistants is that they are engaged in more complex tasks, for instance assisting with surgical procedures or administering medicine. All states presently require vet technicians pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to veterinary techs and for the most part perform the same work functions. They are mandated to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which usually requires 4 years. Therefore the main difference between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s more advanced 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 registration, certification or licensing.
Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or emergency care. Some may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or New Fairfield CT area research facilities also.
Online Veterinarian Courses
An option that may be a solution for those with a busy lifestyle or who are working full-time while attending vet college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are made available over the internet, students can attend on their own schedule wherever a computer is available. The educational program is taught using various venues, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of vet tech and technologist degrees require practical training, that segment can usually be carried out as an internship or work study program at a local New Fairfield CT veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in many instances reduce the cost of your education. Tuition and secondary costs, for example for traveling and study supplies, can be lower compared to more standard classroom programs. Just make sure that the online school that you select is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting agency. With the online classes and the clinical training, everything is provided for a complete education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more self-reliant manner, an online veterinary tech or assistant school may be the perfect choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technician Programs
By now you probably have selected which veterinarian certificate or degree that you would like to obtain, and if you prefer to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinarian community colleges, vocational and trade schools in Connecticut and across the Country, you must ask some relevant questions to help narrow down your list of alternatives. As we discussed in our introduction, many potential students start by prioritizing location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously mentioned other important qualifiers, which include internship programs and accreditation. And naturally you want to select a program that offers the specialty and degree that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are reviewed in the list of questions that you need to ask the New Fairfield CT veterinary technician and assistant schools that you are considering.
Is the Veterinary School Accredited? It’s essential that you make sure that the vet assistant or technician program you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously mentioned, one of 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 thorough review process that verifies you will get a superior education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are requesting a student loan or financial assistance, since numerous programs are not obtainable for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited college is often a prerequisite for employment for a number of New Fairfield CT veterinarian practices and hospitals.
What is the School’s Reputation? The veterinary college or vocational school and program you select should have an excellent reputation within the veterinarian community. You can begin your due diligence by asking the colleges you are looking at for testimonials from the employers in their job assistance network. Other tips include checking with online school rating websites and contacting the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing department if there have been any grievances or violations concerning your targeted schools. As a final pointer, contact some New Fairfield CT vet clinics that you may want to work for after you get your training. Find out what they think about your school selections. They may even recommend some programs not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The most effective approach to obtain clinical hands on training as a vet assistant or technician is to work in a clinical environment. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have internship programs set up with regional veterinarians, vet hospitals or practices. Almost all veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many provide it through internships. Not only will the experience be valuable relative to the clinical training, but an internship may also help build connections in the local New Fairfield CT vet community and aid in the search for a job after graduation.
Is Job Assistance Provided? Searching for a job after graduating from a vet technician or assistant program can 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 considering. A lower rate may suggest that the teachers were unqualified to teach the curriculum or that a number of students were disappointed with the program and quit. Next, check that the colleges have a job assistance program and find out what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may mean that the New Fairfield CT college has an exceptional reputation within the veterinary community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate might mean that the training is not well regarded 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 personalized instruction from the teachers. Request from the New Fairfield CT colleges you are researching what their class teacher to student ratios are. You may also decide to attend a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and teachers. Ask for feedback from students concerning 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? Okay, we already discussed location, but there are a few more points to consider on the subject. If you are going to commute to your vet assistant classes from home or work, you have to make certain that the commuting 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, particularly if the New Fairfield CT school is located close by or within 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 especially for community and state colleges. On the other hand, taking classes online might be an alternative that will provide you with more flexibility and reduce the necessity for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And finally, it’s important that you determine if the Connecticut vet programs you are evaluating offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For example, many students continue working full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others might only be able to attend class in the morning or in the afternoon. Verify that the class times you require are available near New Fairfield CT before enrolling. Also, determine if you can make-up classes that you may miss as a result of work, sickness or family emergencies. You may discover that an online school is the ideal solution to fit your vet training into your hectic life.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Vet Tech?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary job, it's helpful to review questions you might be asked. One of the things that hiring managers frequently ask veterinary applicants is "What compelled you to pick veterinary care as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not merely the private reasons you may have for being a vet assistant, but additionally what attributes and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating exclusively to veterinary care, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should organize several strategies about how you want to address them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the abilities you have that make you an exceptional vet tech and the best candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but write down several ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Select the Best Veterinary Technologist Training Program near New Fairfield CT
Choosing the right vet technician program is an important first step to starting a fulfilling career providing care and treatment for pets and livestock. Potential students thinking about veterinary assistant or tech colleges need to make their decision based on a number of key issues. Vet techs, assistants and technologists are employed in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They typically take on administrative tasks and support the veterinarian with the animal patients as needed. As we have covered, it’s imperative that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the profession. This goes for vet tech online colleges as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for assessing schools, you will be able to narrow down your alternatives so that you can make your final choice. And by choosing the ideal program, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, tech or technologist in New Fairfield CT.
A Little Bit About New Fairfield CT
New Fairfield, Connecticut
New Fairfield is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 13,881 at the 2010 census. New Fairfield is one of five towns that surround Candlewood Lake, the largest lake in Connecticut.
In pre-colonial times, the indigenous people of New Fairfield were part of an alliance of tribes that extended from the source of the Housatonic to the sea.
In 1724, colonial settlers from Fairfield, Connecticut received approval from the General Assembly of the Colony of Connecticut to establish a new township. According to one account, they negotiated with Chief Squantz of the Schaghticoke tribe of Algonquian lineage. Alternatively, it is told that they did not negotiate with Chief Squantz because he moved to the north end of Squantz Pond land area and refused to "sell" the township of New Fairfield. They returned in the Spring of 1725, but found that Chief Squantz had died during the winter. His four sons and heirs refused to sign the deeds. It was not until four years later that the white men called "The Proprietors" finally got the drawn marks of several other native people who may not have had authority to sell the land. They "purchased" a 31,000 acre tract of land that is now New Fairfield and Sherman, for the equivalent of about 300 dollars and on April 24, 1729, The deed was recorded on May 9, 1729, and is now deposited in the archives of the state capital in Hartford, Connecticut.
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