How to Enroll In a Veterinary Technician College near Pawcatuck Connecticut
Fulfilling your lifelong goal of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a veterinarian school near Pawcatuck CT could initially seem like a challenging task. After all, you have to search for and enroll in a program that will provide the proper training to ensure that you can succeed as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you go about analyzing and comparing schools so that you can make the correct selection? Many potential students begin their due diligence process by searching for colleges that are close to their residences. When they have identified some nearby colleges, they ascertain which ones have the cheapest tuition and hone in on those. Although location and expense are significant factors when evaluating vet tech schools, they are not the only important ones when making your evaluations. Factors such as internship programs and accreditation need to be evaluated also. The point is that there are questions you ought to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are considering before you make an ultimate decision. We have furnished several within this article to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll go over the different responsibilities of vet assistants and techs and the training alternatives offered.
The Function of a Veterinary Tech and Assistant
Among the initial decisions that you will need to make is whether you wish to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your determination may be predicated on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your education, but the principal determiner will probably be which specialty appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they each work under the immediate direction of a practicing and licensed veterinarian. And even though there are many duties that they can carry out within the Pawcatuck CT veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medications, diagnose conditions, or perform surgeries. In those areas they can only provide support to a licensed vet. There are technicians and technologists that work exclusive of the standard veterinarian practice, for instance for animal shelters, zoos or police departments. Let’s take a look at the duties and education requirements for each position.
- Vet Assistants in almost all instances will have gone through a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a practice, or by completing a certificate program at a community college or vocational school near Pawcatuck CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the veterinarians and vet technicians in the completion of their duties. Normally they are not involved with more complex activities, such as assisting with surgical procedures. Some of their usual functions may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning exam rooms and equipment, or controlling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians get more extensive training in contrast to assistants and normally acquire a 2 year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the vet equivalent of medical nurses, since their basic job function is to assist vets with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from veterinary assistants is that they are included in more involved functions, for example assisting with surgical procedures or providing medication. All states currently mandate that vet technicians pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to vet technicians and for the most part perform the same work functions. They are mandated to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which usually requires four years. So the main distinction between a vet technologist and a technician is the technologist’s higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more job opportunities, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are also mandated to pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or urgent care. Many may receive certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or Pawcatuck CT area research facilities also.
Veterinary Online Colleges
An option that may be a solution for those with a hectic schedule or who are working full time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are made available through the internet, students can attend on their own schedule wherever a computer is accessible. The course of study is taught using various methods, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since most veterinary tech and technologist degrees require practical training, that portion can usually be fulfilled as an internship or work study program at a local Pawcatuck CT veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances reduce the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary costs, for instance for traveling and study supplies, may be cheaper compared to more traditional classroom courses. Just make certain that the online school that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting agency. With the online classes and the practical training, everything is included for a complete education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more self-reliant mode, an online vet technician or assistant school may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Tech Degree Programs
By now you probably have selected which veterinary certificate or degree that you want to attain, and if you intend to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinarian community colleges, technical and vocational schools in Connecticut and across the USA, you must ask some qualifying questions in order to fine tune your list of alternatives. As we pointed out in our introduction, many potential students start by concentrating on location and tuition expense. But we have previously touched on other important qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And of course you need to enroll in a school that offers the specialty and degree that you want to earn. These and other factors are addressed in the list of questions that you need to ask the Pawcatuck CT veterinary assistant and technician programs that you are looking at.
Is the Veterinary College Accredited? It’s essential that you confirm that the vet assistant or technician college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously discussed, among the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a rigorous review process that ensures you will get a superior education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are requesting a student loan or financial assistance, since many programs are not obtainable for non-accredited programs. Last, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is often a precondition for employment for a number of Pawcatuck CT veterinary practices and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The vet vocational school or college and program you enroll in should have an exceptional reputation within the vet field. You can start your due diligence by asking the schools you are reviewing for references from the employers in their job assistance network. Other suggestions include checking with online school ranking websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing authority if there have been any grievances or infractions regarding your specific schools. As a final suggestion, phone some Pawcatuck CT veterinarians that you may wish 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 best approach to obtain clinical hands on experience as a vet tech or assistant is to work in a medical environment. Find out if the schools you are looking at have internship programs arranged with local veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. Almost all veterinary medicine programs mandate clinical training and many furnish it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable relative to the practical training, but an internship can also help build connections in the local Pawcatuck CT vet community and help in the search for a position after graduation.
Is there a Job Assistance Program? Finding a job after graduating from a vet technician or assistant program may be challenging without the assistance of a job placement program. To start with, ask what the graduation rates are for the programs you are evaluating. A lower rate might mean that the instructors were unqualified to teach the course of study or that a number of students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the colleges have a job placement program and find out what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate might signify that the Pawcatuck CT school has an excellent reputation within the vet community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A low rate could mean that the training is not well thought of by employers or that the job assistance program is a failure at placing students.
How Large are the Classes? If the classes are larger, you may receive little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Request from the Pawcatuck CT programs you are looking at what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You might also decide to participate in a couple of classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between teachers and students. Get evaluations 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 College Located? Yes, we previously covered location, but there are a couple of more points to consider on the topic. If you are going to commute to your veterinary assistant classes from home or work, you have to make sure that the driving 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 Pawcatuck CT college is located close by or within a large city. In addition, if you do choose to attend a college in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition costs especially for state and community colleges. Of course taking classes online could be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the necessity for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s important that you determine if the Connecticut veterinary schools you are evaluating offer class times flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For instance, many students continue to work full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others may only be able to go to classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you require are offered near Pawcatuck CT prior to enrolling. Also, determine if you can make up classes that you might miss as a result of work, sickness or family responsibilities. You may find that an online college is the best solution to fit your vet education into your active life.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Vet Tech?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary job, it's advantageous to review questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers frequently ask veterinary candidates is "What made you choose veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for becoming a vet assistant, but also what qualities and talents you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to veterinary care, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare a number of approaches about how you would like to answer them. Since there are numerous variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the strengths you have that make you an excellent vet tech and the best candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down several concepts and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample answers can assist you to develop your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Pick the Right Vet Technologist Degree Program near Pawcatuck CT
Enrolling in the ideal vet technician college is a critical first step to starting a fulfilling career providing care and treatment for animals. Future students looking into veterinary assistant or tech schools must make their decision based on multiple key factors. Vet assistants, techs and technologists are employed in vet clinics, animal hospitals and animal shelters. They commonly handle administrative responsibilities and assist the veterinarian with the animal patients when needed. As we have discussed, it’s very important that you pick a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the profession. This applies to vet tech online colleges as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make your final decision. And by picking the right school, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist in Pawcatuck CT.
A Little Bit About Pawcatuck CT
Pawcatuck is a village and census-designated place (CDP) in the town of Stonington which is located in New London County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 5,624 at the 2010 census. It is located across the Pawcatuck River from Downtown Westerly in Rhode Island. It includes the Mechanic Street Historic District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The historic district includes sites of shipbuilding, mills, and worker housing in a 147-acre (0.59 km2) area.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 3.42 square miles (8.87 km2), of which 3.41 square miles (8.84 km2) is land and 0.012 square miles (0.03 km2), or 0.37%, is water. Pawcatuck is bordered to the east by the Pawcatuck River.
As of the census of 2000, there were 5,474 people, 2,427 households, and 1,439 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 1,479.9 people per square mile (571.2/km2). There were 2,598 housing units at an average density of 702.4 per square mile (271.1/km2). The racial makeup of the CDP was 93.53% White, 0.75% African American, 0.69% Native American, 2.12% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.69% from other races, and 2.16% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.44% of the population.
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