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Questions to Ask Veterinary Technician Programs

At this point you should have determined which veterinarian credential that you wish to attain, and if you intend to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, technical and vocational schools in the Florence AL area as well as across the Country, you need to ask some important questions in order to narrow down your list of options. As we discussed in our introduction, many potential students start by focusing on location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously touched on other important qualifiers, for instance accreditation and internship programs. And of course you need to select a college that offers the degree and specialty that you would like to earn. These and other factors are covered in the list of questions that you should ask the veterinary technician colleges that you are looking at.

Is the Vet Program Accredited?  It's imperative that you verify that the vet tech program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As earlier stated, 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 an extensive screening process that verifies you will receive a superior education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are requesting a student loan or financial assistance, since numerous programs are not offered for non-accredited schools. Last, having a degree or certificate from an accredited program is in many cases a prerequisite for employment for a number of Florence AL area vet clinics and hospitals.

What is the School's Reputation?  The veterinarian trade school or college and program you enroll in should have an outstanding reputation within the veterinary community. You can start your due diligence by asking the colleges you are interested in for references from the employers in their job placement network. Other tips include looking on online school rating websites and checking with the school's accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Alabama school licensing authority if there have been any complaints or infractions regarding your targeted schools. As a final pointer, call some Florence AL vet clinics that you might wish to work for after you go through your training. Ask what they think of your school selections. They might even suggest one or more colleges not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The best means to get clinical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a medical environment. Ask if the colleges you are considering have internship programs arranged with Florence AL veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. The majority of veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many furnish it through internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the practical training, but an internship can also help develop relationships in the local vet community and assist in the search for a job after graduation.

Is there a Job Assistance Program?  Finding a job after graduating from a vet tech program may be difficult 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 could mean that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that some students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the schools have a job placement program and find out what their placement rates are. A high placement rate could mean that the college has an exceptional reputation within the Florence AL vet community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate might indicate that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job placement program is a failure at placing students.

How Large are the Classes?  If the classes are larger in size, you most likely will receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Florence AL colleges you are looking at what their class student to teacher ratios are. You might also want to sit in on a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and instructors. Get feedback from students regarding the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the teachers and determine what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.

Where is the School Located?  Okay, we already discussed location, but there are a few more points to make on the topic. If you are going to commute to your veterinary technician classes from your Florence AL home, you have to make certain that the driving time fits into your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to check out the route won't be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, particularly if the campus is located near or in a large city. Also, if you do choose to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition charges particularly for state and community colleges. On the other hand, attending online classes might be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.

Is the Class Schedule Flexible?  And last, it's essential that you determine if the veterinarian colleges you are considering offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or in the evenings near Florence AL. Some may only be able to attend classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Verify that the class times you need are offered before enrolling. Also, find out if you can make up classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family issues. You might discover that an online program is the best solution to fit your veterinary training into your hectic life.

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