How to Choose a Vet Tech School near Taconic Connecticut
Achieving your long term dream of working with and caring for animals by enrolling in a vet program near Taconic CT might at first seem like a daunting endeavor. After all, you must locate and enroll in a program that will furnish the proper training so that you can be successful as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you tackle assessing and contrasting programs so that you can make the best choice? Many future students begin their due diligence process by looking for schools that are close to their homes. When they have located some area colleges, they ascertain which ones have the most affordable tuition and focus on those. Although cost and location are important factors when comparing vet tech schools, they are by no means the only critical ones when making your comparisons. Factors such as accreditation and internship programs should be evaluated as well. The point is that there are questions you ought to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are reviewing before you make a final selection. We have presented several in this article to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll talk about the varied responsibilities of vet assistants and techs and the training options available.
The Role of a Vet Assistant and Tech
Among the initial decisions that you will have to make is whether you desire to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your determination might be predicated on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your training, but the main determiner will probably be which specialization interests you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they all work under the immediate direction of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are numerous duties that they can perform within the Taconic CT veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe medications, diagnose health issues, or conduct surgeries. In those areas they may only provide assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technologists and technicians that work outside of the typical veterinarian practice, for example for animal shelters, zoos or police departments. Let’s take a look at the responsibilities and education prerequisites for each position.
- 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 graduating from a certificate program at a community college or trade school near Taconic CT. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the performance of their duties. Usually they are not involved with more involved tasks, for instance assisting with surgeries. A few of their typical duties may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing exam rooms and equipment, or handling animals during exams.
- Vet Technicians go through more advanced training in contrast to assistants and usually acquire a two year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their fundamental job function is to assist vets with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from vet assistants is that they are engaged in more involved activities, for instance assisting with surgeries or providing medicine. All states presently mandate that veterinary techs pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
- Vet Technologists are similar to vet techs and essentially perform the same job functions. They are mandated to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which usually requires 4 years to complete. So the main distinction between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more career opportunities, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing examination for either registration, certification or licensing.
Vet techs and technologists may specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or urgent care. Many may earn certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or Taconic CT area research facilities as well.
Veterinary Online Degree Programs
An alternative that might be a solution for those with a hectic lifestyle or who are working full-time while attending veterinary college is to enroll in an online training program. Because the classes are provided through the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is available. The curriculum is taught using multiple methods, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since most vet tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can typically be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Taconic CT veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, can in many instances decrease the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary expenses, for instance for travel and study materials, can be lower compared to more traditional classroom courses. Just confirm that the online school that you choose is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting organization. With the online classes and the practical training, everything is provided for a comprehensive education. So if you are disciplined enough to learn in this more self-reliant fashion, an online vet technician or assistant school may be the perfect option for you.
Questions to Ask Vet Assistant and Technologist Degree Programs
At this point you should have decided on which veterinary certificate or degree that you want to obtain, and if you intend to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are an abundance of vet community colleges, vocational and trade schools in Connecticut and across the USA, you need to ask some qualifying questions in order to fine tune your list of alternatives. As we pointed out in our introduction, many prospective students start by focusing on location and tuition expense. But we have already pointed out other significant qualifiers, which include accreditation and internship programs. And naturally you need to enroll in a school that offers the degree and specialty that you want to earn. These and other qualifications are covered in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the Taconic CT veterinary assistant and tech colleges that you are considering.
Is the Vet College Accredited? It’s essential that you confirm that the vet technician or assistant college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously discussed, one of the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a demanding review process that verifies you will obtain 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 offered for non-accredited colleges. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is often a requirement for employment for a number of Taconic CT veterinary practices and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The veterinarian trade school or college and program you choose must have an excellent reputation within the veterinary community. You can start your due diligence by asking the schools you are reviewing for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other tips include looking on internet school rating 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 Taconic CT vet clinics that you may want to work for after you get your training. Find out what they think of your school choices. They might even suggest some schools not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The best approach to get practical hands on experience as a vet assistant or tech is to work in a clinical environment. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have internship programs established with area veterinarians, vet hospitals or clinics. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number furnish it through internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable as far as the clinical training, but an internship may also help develop associations in the local Taconic CT veterinarian community and help in the search for a position after graduation.
Is Job Assistance Offered? 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, find out what the graduation rates are for the colleges you are evaluating. A lower rate might mean that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that some students were unhappy with the program and quit. Next, verify that the schools have a job assistance program and ask what their placement rates are. A high placement rate might indicate that the Taconic CT college has an exceptional reputation within the vet community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate could mean that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job placement program is a failure at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are larger in size, you most likely will get little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Taconic CT programs you are researching what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You might also decide to sit in on some classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between teachers and students. Get feedback from students concerning the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the instructors and determine what their backgrounds are as well as their methods of teaching.
Where is the School Located? Yes, we previously talked about location, but there are a couple of more points to make on the topic. If you are going to commute to your vet technician classes from home or work, you have to make sure 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 Taconic CT school is located in or close by a larger city. Also, if you do choose to attend a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition costs particularly for community and state colleges. Of course taking classes online may be an option that will give you more flexibility and minimize the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And finally, it’s essential that you ascertain if the Connecticut vet programs you are exploring offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For example, many students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others might only be able to go to classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Verify that the class times you need are offered near Taconic CT before enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make up classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family issues. You might find that an online college is the best solution to fit your vet education into your hectic life.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Vet Technician?When preparing to interview for a veterinary position, it's helpful to review questions you could be asked. Among the things that hiring managers often ask veterinary applicants is "What made you pick veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the personal reasons you might have for becoming a veterinary technician, but also what qualities and skills you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating primarily to veterinary care, as well as a significant number of general interview questions, so you should prepare several ideas about how you would like to address them. Given that there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an excellent vet tech and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down several concepts and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Pick the Ideal Vet Technologist Training Program near Taconic CT
Selecting the right vet technician school is an important first step to beginning a gratifying career delivering care and treatment for pets and livestock. Future students thinking about vet tech or assistant colleges must make their determination based on several key factors. Veterinary assistants, techs and technologists work in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They typically take on administrative duties and support the veterinarian with the animal patients when needed. As we have covered, it’s very important that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an outstanding reputation within the profession. This applies to vet tech online programs as well. By asking the questions included 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 ideal program, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, tech or technologist in Taconic CT.
A Little Bit About Taconic CT
Salisbury is a town in Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States of the New York metropolitan area. The town is the northwest-most in the State of Connecticut. The MA-NY-CT (Massachusetts-New York-Connecticut) Tri-State Marker is located just on the border of Salisbury. The population was 3,977 at the 2000 census.
Salisbury was established and incorporated in 1741, and contains several historic homes, though some were replaced by larger modern structures in the late 20th century. Salisbury was named for a town in England. Historian Ed Kirby tells us that traces of iron were discovered in what was to become Salisbury in 1728, with the discovery of the large deposit at Old Hill (later Ore Hill) in 1731 by John Pell and Ezekiel Ashley. Beginning before the Revolution, during the Federal period, and until around 1920, Salisbury was the seat of an important iron industry.
Additional iron mines were opened, mostly in the Western end of the township, although historian Diana Muir dismisses them as "scarcely big enough to notice," with the further disadvantage of not being near a river large enough to ship iron to market at a reasonable cost. The solution, according to Muir, was to pour labor into the iron, working it into a quality of wrought iron so high that it could be used even for gun barrels. This fetched a high price and made Salisbury iron the celebrated choice of Connecticut's early nineteenth-century arms industry as well as the preeminent source of cast iron railroad car wheels until they were superseded by steel wheels. Peter P. Everts, an agent of the mid-19th-century mines, however, stated the quality of Salisbury iron varied. The iron industry in Salisbury became inactive following World War I, a plan to revive it during World War II was never implemented, and the mines remain under water.
More Cities of Interest in Connecticut