How to Choose a Vet Tech Program near Storrs Mansfield Connecticut
Realizing your long term aspiration of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a veterinary college near Storrs Mansfield CT could initially seem like a challenging endeavor. After all, you must search for and enroll in a program that will provide the appropriate training so that you can succeed as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. But just how do you go about assessing and comparing programs so that you can make the correct selection? Many future students start their due diligence process by looking for campuses that are near their homes. After they have found some area schools, they determine which ones have the lowest tuition and hone in on those. Although cost and location are important concerns when comparing vet tech schools, they are by no means the only important ones when making your evaluations. Factors such as internship programs and accreditation need to be evaluated as well. The main idea is that there are questions you should be asking the veterinary tech programs you are looking at before you make an ultimate selection. We have provided several in this article to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll discuss the different roles of veterinary techs and assistants and the training options offered.
The Function of a Veterinary Tech and Assistant
Among the initial decisions that you will need to make is if you plan to train as a vet assistant, technician 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 principal determiner will probably be which specialization appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they all work under the immediate guidance of a practicing and licensed veterinarian. And even though there are a number of duties that they can carry out within the Storrs Mansfield CT veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe medicines, diagnose conditions, or carry out surgical procedures. In those areas they can only furnish support to a licensed vet. There are technicians and technologists that work away from the conventional vet practice, for example for animal shelters, zoos or police departments. Let’s take a look at the job functions and education prerequisites for each position.
- Vet Assistants in most cases will have undergone a formal training program, either as an apprentice or intern in a practice, or by graduating from a certificate program at a vocational school or community college near Storrs Mansfield CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the veterinarians and vet technicians in the performance of their duties. Normally they are not associated with more involved tasks, for example assisting with surgical procedures. Some of their typical duties may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning exam rooms and equipment, or handling pets during exams.
- Vet Technicians undergo more advanced training in contrast to assistants and typically earn a two year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the veterinarian counterparts of medical nurses, since their fundamental job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from vet assistants is that they are involved in more involved duties, for instance assisting with surgical procedures or providing medication. All states presently mandate that veterinary technicians pass a credentialing examination for either licensing, registration or certification.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to vet technicians and for the most part perform the same job functions. They are mandated to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which typically takes four 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 job opportunities, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are additionally required to pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.
Vet technicians and technologists may specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or emergency care. Some may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or Storrs Mansfield CT area research facilities as well.
Veterinarian Online Degree Programs
An alternative that might be a solution for those with a busy schedule or who are working full time while attending veterinarian school is to enroll in an online training program. Since the classes are provided over the internet, students can study on their own schedule wherever a computer is accessible. The educational program is taught using multiple venues, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of veterinary technician and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can normally be fulfilled as an internship or work study program at a local Storrs Mansfield CT veterinary practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in many instances reduce the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary expenditures, for example for traveling and study supplies, can be cheaper compared to more conventional classroom courses. Just be 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 fashion, an online veterinary technician or assistant school may be the perfect choice for you.
What to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technologist Training Programs
At this point you probably have selected which veterinary certificate or degree that you wish to obtain, and if you intend to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are a large number of veterinarian community colleges, technical and vocational schools in Connecticut as well as across the USA, you must ask some important questions to help narrow down your list of options. As we pointed out in our opening, many potential students start by prioritizing location and the cost of tuition. But we have already mentioned other essential qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And naturally you need to enroll in a school that offers the specialty and degree that you are interested in. These and other factors are addressed in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the Storrs Mansfield CT vet assistant and tech programs that you are reviewing.
Is the Veterinary College Accredited? It’s imperative that you make sure that the vet assistant or technician college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously stated, among 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 rigorous review process that confirms you will obtain a superior education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since many programs are not obtainable for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is frequently a requirement for employment for a number of Storrs Mansfield CT veterinary clinics and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The vet college or trade school and program you select must have an outstanding reputation within the veterinarian community. You can begin your due diligence by asking the schools you are reviewing for references from the employers in their job placement network. Other tips include looking on internet school rating websites and checking with the school’s accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the Connecticut school licensing authority if there have been any grievances or infractions concerning your specific schools. As a final recommendation, phone some Storrs Mansfield CT veterinary clinics that you may want to work for after you get your training. Find out what they think of your school selections. They might even recommend some programs not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The best means to get clinical hands on experience as a vet tech or assistant is to work in a professional setting. Ask if the colleges you are considering have internship programs arranged with area veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number furnish it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable relative to the practical training, but an internship can also help build associations in the local Storrs Mansfield CT veterinary community and help in the search for a position after graduation.
Is there a Job Placement Program? Finding a job after graduating from a veterinary tech or assistant college may be difficult without the help of a job placement program. To begin with, ask what the graduation rates are for the colleges you are reviewing. A lower rate may indicate that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the syllabus or that some students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. Next, check that the colleges have a job assistance program and find out what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may indicate that the Storrs Mansfield CT college has an exceptional reputation within the veterinary community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A low rate might signify that the training is not highly regarded by employers or that the job assistance program is ineffective at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are larger sized, you probably will get little or no personalized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Storrs Mansfield CT colleges you are researching what their class teacher to student ratios are. You may also decide to sit in on a couple of classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between students and instructors. Get feedback from students relating to 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? Okay, we already talked about location, but there are a few more points to make on the topic. If you are planning to drive to your veterinary technician classes from work or home, you have to make certain that the driving time is compatible with your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the commute during rush hour traffic, especially if the Storrs Mansfield CT college is located close by or within a large city. Also, if you do opt to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition costs particularly for state and community colleges. On the other hand, attending online classes could be an option that will give you more flexibility and minimize the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s important that you find out if the Connecticut veterinary programs you are exploring offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to fit your schedule. For example, a number of students continue to work full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others might only be able to go to classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you require are available near Storrs Mansfield CT before enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies. You may discover that an online program is the best solution to fit your vet training into your active life.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Veterinary Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a veterinary position, it's helpful to review questions you could be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers frequently ask veterinary candidates is "What made you select veterinary care as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a veterinary technician, but additionally what qualities and abilities you possess that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to veterinary care, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must ready a number of strategies about how you want to answer them. Because there are numerous variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you along with the talents you possess that make you an exceptional vet tech and the best choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
Select the Ideal Vet Technician Program near Storrs Mansfield CT
Picking the ideal veterinary technician college is a crucial first step to starting a fulfilling career providing treatment and care for pets and livestock. Students considering veterinary tech or assistant programs need to make their decision based on a number of key factors. Vet techs, assistants and technologists are employed in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They usually take on administrative tasks and assist the veterinarian with the animals when needed. As we have discussed, it’s imperative that you select a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the field. This applies to online vet tech programs as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for evaluating schools, you will be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make your final selection. And by choosing the right college, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, tech or technologist in Storrs Mansfield CT.
A Little Bit About Storrs Mansfield CT
Storrs is a village and census-designated place (CDP) in the town of Mansfield within eastern Tolland County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 15,344 at the 2010 census. It is dominated economically and demographically by the presence of the main campus of the University of Connecticut and the associated Connecticut Repertory Theatre.
It was named after Charles and Augustus Storrs, two brothers who founded the University of Connecticut (originally called the Storrs Agricultural College) by giving the land (170 acres (0.69 km2)) and $5,000 in 1871
In the aftermath of September 2005's Hurricane Katrina, Storrs was named by Slate as "America's Best Place to Avoid Death Due to Natural Disaster."
More Cities of Interest in Connecticut