How to Choose a Vet Assistant Training near Riverside Connecticut
Fulfilling your long term dream of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a vet school near Riverside CT could at first seem like a daunting task. After all, you have to locate and enroll in a program that will provide the appropriate training so that you can be successful as a vet technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you go about analyzing and comparing schools so that you can make the best choice? Many future students start their due diligence process by searching for colleges that are near their residences. After they have identified some nearby colleges, they ascertain which ones have the cheapest tuition and focus on those. Although location and cost are significant concerns when comparing vet tech schools, they are by no means the only important ones when making your evaluations. Qualifications such as internship programs and accreditation need to be considered as well. The point is that there are questions you ought to 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 discuss them we’ll discuss the varied roles of vet assistants and techs and the training alternatives offered.
The Role of a Vet Assistant and Tech
Among the first decisions that you will need to make is if you desire to train as a veterinary assistant, technologist or technician. Part of your decision might be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to invest in your education, but the main determiner will undoubtedly be which specialty appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they all work under the direct direction of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And although there are numerous functions that they can carry out within the Riverside CT veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medications, diagnose conditions, or perform surgical procedures. In those areas they can only provide assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technicians and technologists that work exclusive of the standard veterinarian practice, such as for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the job functions and training prerequisites for each position.
- Vet Assistants in most cases 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 trade school near Riverside CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the performance of their duties. Generally they are not associated with more complex activities, such as assisting with surgeries. A few of their usual responsibilities may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning exam rooms and equipment, or controlling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians get more advanced training compared to assistants and generally obtain a 2 year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the vet counterparts of medical nurses, since their general job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they vary from veterinary assistants is that they are engaged in more complex activities, for example assisting with surgeries or administering medicine. All states currently require vet technicians pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
- Vet Technologists are similar to vet technicians and basically carry out the same job functions. They are required to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which usually takes 4 years. Therefore the main distinction between a vet technologist and a technician is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more work options, higher salaries and potential management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing exam for either certification, registration or licensing.
Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or emergency care. Some may earn certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in laboratories or Riverside CT area research facilities also.
Veterinarian Online Degree Programs
An alternative that may be a solution for those with a busy lifestyle or who are working full time while going to vet college is to enroll in an online training program. Since the classes are made available by means of the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The educational program is taught using several methods, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of vet tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can usually be fulfilled as an internship or work study program at a local Riverside CT veterinarian clinic or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, can in many instances reduce the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary expenditures, for instance for commuting and study materials, can be cheaper compared to more conventional classroom programs. Just make sure that the online school that you choose is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting organization. With the online courses and the practical training, everything is included for a comprehensive education. So if you are disciplined enough to learn in this more self-reliant manner, an online vet technician or assistant school may be the ideal option for you.
What to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Tech Degree Programs
At this point you probably have decided on which veterinarian credential that you want to attain, and if you want to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, trade and vocational schools in Connecticut as well as across the Country, you must ask some qualifying questions to help narrow down your list of options. As we pointed out in our opening, many future students start by concentrating on location and tuition expense. But we have previously pointed out other important qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And of course you want to select a college that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are addressed in the list of questions that you should ask the Riverside CT veterinary technician and assistant schools that you are considering.
Is the Veterinary College Accredited? It’s imperative that you make sure that the veterinary assistant or tech program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As earlier mentioned, one of the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Vocational schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a demanding review process that confirms you will get 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 certificate or degree from an accredited program is often a requirement for employment for many Riverside CT vet practices and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The veterinarian college or trade school and program you enroll in should have an exceptional reputation within the veterinarian community. You can start your due diligence by asking the schools you are interested in for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other pointers include checking with online school ranking websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing department if there have been any grievances or violations involving your targeted schools. As a final recommendation, call some Riverside CT veterinary clinics that you may wish to work for after you get your training. Find out what they think about your school selections. They may even suggest some programs not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The best means to obtain practical hands on experience as a vet tech or assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Find out if the programs you are reviewing have internship programs established with local veterinarians, vet hospitals or clinics. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate clinical training and many provide it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable relative to the clinical training, but an internship can also help build relationships in the local Riverside CT veterinarian community and help in the search for a position after graduation.
Is Job Assistance Provided? Finding 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 programs you are evaluating. A lower rate might indicate that the teachers were unqualified to teach the curriculum or that a number of students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the schools have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may signify that the Riverside CT program has an exceptional 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 regarded by employers or that the job assistance program is a failure at placing students.
How Large are the Classes? If the classes are larger sized, you may get little or no personalized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Riverside CT programs you are considering what their class teacher to student ratios are. You might also decide to participate in a couple of classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between students and teachers. Ask for evaluations from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and determine what their backgrounds are as well as their methods of teaching.
Where is the School Located? Yes, we previously covered location, but there are a few more points to consider on the topic. If you are going to commute to your vet tech classes from work or home, you must make sure 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 drive during rush hour traffic, especially if the Riverside CT college is located in or close by a larger city. In addition, if you do opt to attend a college 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 online classes may be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the necessity for travel.
Is the Class Schedule Flexible? And finally, it’s essential that you determine if the Connecticut vet schools you are evaluating offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to fit your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night. Others might only be able to go to classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Verify that the class times you need are offered near Riverside CT before enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family emergencies. You may find that an online school is the ideal solution to fit your veterinary training into your hectic life.
Why Did You Want to Be a Vet Technician?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary job, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the things that interviewers often ask veterinary candidates is "What compelled you to pick veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a vet assistant, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to veterinary care, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to prepare several strategies about how you want to address them. Considering there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the abilities you possess that make you an excellent vet tech and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but write down some ideas and topics that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Select the Right Veterinary Technician Training Program near Riverside CT
Choosing the ideal veterinary technician college is a crucial first step to beginning a gratifying career delivering care and treatment for animals. Potential students thinking about veterinary assistant or tech colleges must make their decision based on several key factors. Veterinary assistants, techs and technologists work in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They typically take on administrative tasks and assist the veterinarian with the animal patients as needed. As we have discussed, it’s essential that you choose a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the profession. This goes for online vet tech schools 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 picking the right program, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a vet assistant, tech or technologist in Riverside CT.
A Little Bit About Riverside CT
Riverside is a neighborhood/section in the town of Greenwich in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 8,416.
The town of Greenwich is one political and taxing body, but consists of several distinct sections or neighborhoods, such as Banksville, Byram, Cos Cob, Glenville, Mianus, Old Greenwich, Riverside, and Greenwich (sometimes referred to as central, or downtown, Greenwich). Of these neighborhoods, three (Cos Cob, Old Greenwich, and Riverside) have separate postal names and ZIP codes.
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, at 200 Riverside Avenue in Riverside, has held its "Fair for All" since 1942. Money raised goes directly to local charities.
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