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Questions to Ask Vet Tech Programs

By now you probably have selected which veterinary credential that you wish to earn, and if you prefer to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, vocational and trade schools in the Valley AL area as well as across the USA, you need to ask some relevant questions to help narrow down 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 already touched on other essential qualifiers, for instance internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you want to choose a program that offers the specialty and degree that you want to earn. These and other factors are reviewed in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the veterinary technician colleges that you are looking at.

Is the Vet Program Accredited?  It's important that you make sure that the veterinary technician college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As previously mentioned, 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 rigorous review process that ensures you will receive a quality education. Also, accreditation is important if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, since many programs are not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited college is frequently a prerequisite for employment for many Valley AL area veterinarian practices and hospitals.

What is the Program's Reputation?  The vet college or vocational school and program you choose must have an outstanding reputation within the veterinarian field. You can begin your due diligence by asking the schools you are interested in for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other suggestions include looking on internet school rating websites and speaking with the school's accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Alabama school licensing department if there have been any grievances or infractions concerning your specific schools. As a final suggestion, call some Valley AL vet clinics that you may want to work for after you receive your training. Ask what they think about your school choices. They might even suggest some colleges not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The most effective approach to get clinical hands on experience as a vet tech is to work in a medical setting. Find out if the programs you are reviewing have internship programs arranged with Valley AL veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. The majority of veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number furnish it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable regarding the practical training, but an internship may also help establish connections in the local vet community and help in the search for a job after graduation.

Is there a Job Placement Program?  Searching for a job after graduating from a veterinary technician college 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 reviewing. A lower rate may signify that the teachers were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that a number of students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. Next, confirm that the schools have a job assistance program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate might indicate that the school has an excellent reputation within the Valley AL veterinary community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate may signify that the training is not well thought of 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 probably will receive little or no personalized instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Valley AL schools you are looking at what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You might also want to attend a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between instructors and students. Get evaluations from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the instructors and determine what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.

Where is the College Located?  Of course, we already discussed location, but there are several more points to consider on the topic. If you are going to drive to your vet tech classes from your Valley AL home, you have to make certain 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, particularly if the campus is located near or in a large city. In addition, if you do decide 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. On the other hand, taking online classes could be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.

Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule?  And last, it's important that you ascertain if the vet programs you are evaluating offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For instance, many students continue working full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings near Valley AL. Some may only be able to go to classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Verify that the class times you require are offered before enrolling. Also, find out if you can make-up classes that you may miss due to work, sickness or family issues. You might find that an online college is the best solution to fit your vet education into your hectic life.

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