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Questions to Ask Veterinary Technician Colleges

At this point you probably have selected which veterinary degree that you wish to attain, and if you want to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are an abundance of vet community colleges, vocational and technical schools in the Bethel AK area and across the Country, you need to ask some qualifying questions to help fine tune your list of options. As we pointed out in our introduction, many future students start by focusing on location and tuition expense. But we have previously mentioned other significant qualifiers, which include internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you want to enroll in a program that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are covered in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the veterinary technician programs that you are considering.

Is the Veterinary School Accredited?  It's essential that you confirm that the vet tech school you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As previously discussed, one of the most highly regarded 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 ensures you will get a superior education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since numerous programs are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited college is often a precondition for employment for a number of Bethel AK area vet practices and hospitals.

What is the School's Reputation?  The veterinary vocational school or college and program you choose should have an exceptional reputation within the vet field. You can start your due diligence by asking the colleges you are interested in for endorsements from the employers in their job assistance network. Other suggestions include looking on internet school ranking websites and speaking with the school's accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the Alaska school licensing authority if there have been any complaints or violations relating to your specific schools. As a final recommendation, call some Bethel AK veterinarians that you may want to work for after you get your training. Find out what they think of your school choices. They might even recommend one or more schools not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The most effective approach to obtain practical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a professional setting. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have internship programs arranged with Bethel AK veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. Almost all veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number furnish it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be valuable regarding the clinical training, but an internship may also help develop relationships in the local veterinary community and aid in the search for a job after graduation.

Is Job Assistance Offered?  Searching for a job after graduating from a vet tech program may be challenging without the help of a job placement program. First, find out what the graduation rates are for the programs you are reviewing. A low rate might signify that the instructors were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that some students were disappointed with the program and quit. Next, verify that the colleges have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate might mean that the college has an excellent reputation within the Bethel AK veterinary community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A low rate might indicate that the training is not highly regarded by employers or that the job assistance program is ineffective at placing students.

How Large are the Classes?  If the classes are bigger, you most likely will get little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Bethel AK schools you are researching what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You may also decide to sit in on a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between teachers and students. Ask for feedback from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the teachers and determine what their backgrounds are as well as their approaches to teaching.

Where is the College Located?  Okay, we previously talked about location, but there are a few more points to consider on the subject. If you are going to drive to your veterinary technician classes from your Bethel AK home, 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, particularly if the campus is located in or near a large city. In addition, if you do decide to attend a college in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition charges especially for state and community colleges. Of course taking online classes might be an option that will provide you with more flexibility and minimize the necessity for travel.

Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule?  And finally, it's imperative that you find out if the vet colleges you are exploring offer class times flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For example, many students continue to work full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or in the evenings near Bethel AK. Some may only be able to go to classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you need are offered before enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies. You might find that an online program is the ideal solution to fit your vet education into your hectic life.

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