How to Enroll In a Vet Tech College near Oakdale Connecticut
Fulfilling your long term aspiration of working with and caring for pets by enrolling in a vet program near Oakdale CT could initially feel like a daunting endeavor. After all, you need to locate and enroll in a college that will provide the appropriate training to ensure that you can be successful as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. But just how do you approach evaluating and comparing colleges so that you can make the best selection? Many future students start their due diligence process by searching for schools that are near their homes. After they have located some nearby colleges, they determine which ones have the most affordable tuition and hone in on those. Although location and expense are significant concerns when evaluating vet tech schools, they are by no means the only critical ones when making your evaluations. Factors such as accreditation and internship programs need to be evaluated as well. The main idea is that there are questions you should be asking the veterinary tech programs you are reviewing before you make a final selection. We have provided several within this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll talk about the varied duties of veterinary techs and assistants and the training options offered.
The Job of a Veterinary Tech and Assistant
One of the initial decisions that you will need to make is whether you desire to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your preference may be predicated on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your education, but the primary determiner will undoubtedly be which specialty appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants share in common is that they each work under the direct guidance of a practicing and licensed veterinarian. And while there are a number of tasks that they can carry out within the Oakdale CT veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose conditions, or carry out surgeries. In those areas they may only provide assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technicians and technologists that work outside of the standard veterinarian practice, such as for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the duties and training requirements for each specialization.
- Vet Assistants in the majority of instances will have undergone a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a practice, or by graduating from a certificate program at a trade school or community college near Oakdale CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet techs in the completion of their duties. Usually they are not associated with more involved activities, such as assisting with surgeries. A few of their regular functions may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing examination rooms and equipment, or handling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians go through more advanced training compared to assistants and usually obtain 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 general job duty is to assist vets with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from vet assistants is that they are engaged in more involved functions, for instance assisting with surgeries or administering medication. All states presently mandate that vet technicians pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to veterinary technicians and for the most part perform the same work functions. They are mandated to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which typically takes four years. Therefore 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 possible management positions. They are additionally mandated to pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
Veterinary techs and technologists may specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or urgent care. Many may obtain certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in laboratories or Oakdale CT area research facilities as well.
Online Veterinarian Colleges
An option 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 program. Because the classes are made available over the internet, students can attend on their own timetable wherever a computer is available. The syllabus is taught using various venues, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since many vet tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can normally be fulfilled as an internship or work study program at a local Oakdale CT 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 example for travel and study supplies, can be more affordable compared to more conventional classroom courses. Just be sure that the program that you select is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting agency. With the online classes and the practical training, everything is furnished for a comprehensive education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more independent fashion, an online vet tech or assistant program may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technician Schools
At this point you should have decided on which veterinarian credential that you want to attain, and if you intend to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinarian community colleges, technical and vocational schools in Connecticut and across the Country, you need to ask some relevant questions to help fine tune your list of options. As we pointed out in our opening, many future students start by focusing on location and the cost of tuition. But we have already touched on other significant qualifiers, which include accreditation and internship programs. And obviously you want to enroll in a college that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other factors are covered in the list of questions that you should ask the Oakdale CT veterinary assistant and tech colleges that you are looking at.
Is the Vet School Accredited? It’s imperative that you confirm that the veterinary assistant or tech school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As earlier discussed, one of the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Vocational schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a thorough screening process that ensures you will get a quality education. Also, accreditation is important if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, since a large number of programs are not available for non-accredited programs. Last, having a certificate or degree from an accredited college is frequently a requirement for employment for many Oakdale CT vet practices and hospitals.
What is the School’s Reputation? The veterinarian college or trade school and program you enroll in should have an excellent reputation within the vet field. You can begin your due diligence by asking the schools you are reviewing for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other pointers include looking on internet school rating websites and checking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing authority if there have been any complaints or infractions involving your targeted schools. As a final pointer, contact some Oakdale CT veterinary clinics that you may want to work for after you receive your training. Ask what they think of your school selections. They might even suggest some schools not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The most effective approach to get clinical hands on experience as a vet tech or assistant is to work in a medical setting. Ask if the colleges you are considering have internship programs arranged with area veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate clinical training and a large number provide it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be valuable regarding the practical training, but an internship may also help establish connections in the local Oakdale CT vet community and assist in the search for employment after graduation.
Is there a Job Placement Program? Searching for a job after graduating from a vet assistant or technician college may be difficult without the help of a job placement program. To begin with, ask what the graduation rates are for the schools you are considering. A lower rate might indicate that the teachers were unqualified to teach the syllabus or that some 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 could mean that the Oakdale CT program has an excellent reputation within the vet community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A low rate might indicate that the training is not well thought of by employers or that the job placement program is ineffective at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are bigger, you probably will receive little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Oakdale CT schools you are considering what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You might also want to sit in on some classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and teachers. Get evaluations from students concerning the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the instructors and find out what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.
Where is the School Located? Okay, we previously talked about location, but there are several more points to consider on the topic. If you are going to drive to your vet technician classes from home or work, you must make certain that the commuting time fits into your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, especially if the Oakdale CT school is located close by or within a larger city. In addition, if you do opt to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition fees particularly for community and state colleges. On the other hand, taking classes online may be an alternative that will provide you with more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.
Is the Class Schedule Flexible? And finally, it’s important that you ascertain if the Connecticut veterinarian programs you are looking at offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For instance, many students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night. Others might only be able to attend classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you require are offered near Oakdale CT before enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you might miss due to sickness, work or family emergencies. You may find that an online program is the ideal solution to fit your vet education into your active life.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Vet Technician?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary job, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers typically ask veterinary prospects is "What compelled you to select veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the private reasons you may have for becoming a veterinary technician, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to veterinary care, in addition to a certain number of general interview questions, so you must ready a number of strategies about how you want to answer them. Given that there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the abilities you possess that make you an excellent vet tech and the leading candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down some concepts and talking points that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
Choose the Ideal Veterinary Technologist Degree Program near Oakdale CT
Selecting the appropriate vet assistant or tech program is a critical first step to starting a rewarding career providing care and treatment for animals. Students considering vet tech or assistant colleges need to make their selection based on several key issues. Vet assistants, techs and technologists work in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They commonly handle administrative tasks and support the veterinarian with the animal patients as needed. As we have discussed, it’s very important that you enroll in a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the field. This applies to vet tech online programs as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for assessing schools, you will be able to reduce your options so that you can make your final selection. And by choosing the right school, you can reach your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist in Oakdale CT.
A Little Bit About Oakdale CT
Montville is a town in New London County, Connecticut in the United States. The population was 19,571 at the 2010 census.
The villages of Chesterfield, Mohegan, Oakdale, and Uncasville are located within the town; the latter two have their own ZIP codes. Town residents often identify with these villages more than the Town of Montville as a whole, and the Mohegan Sun casino resort is nearby.
In the 17th century, when English settlers arrived, southeastern Connecticut was the scene of rivalry between the Pequot people, the dominant Native American group in the New London area, and the newly independent Mohegan. The latter became friendly to the English. For defense against the Pequot, the Mohegan sachem Uncas had established a fortified village on a promontory above the Thames River within what is now the town of Montville. The Mohegan village, now known as Fort Shantok, was protected on the inland side by palisades first built in about 1636 at the time of the Pequot War, rebuilt during wars with the Narragansett people circa 1653–1657, and rebuilt again at the time of King Philip's War (1675–1676).
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