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Things to Ask Vet Tech Programs

By now you should have decided on 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 veterinary community colleges, trade and vocational schools in the Juneau AK area and across the USA, you should ask some qualifying questions in order to fine tune your list of alternatives. As we pointed out in our opening, many potential students start by focusing on location and the cost of tuition. But we have already touched on other important qualifiers, for example internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you want to enroll in a school that offers the specialty and degree that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are covered in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the vet tech programs that you are considering.

Is the Veterinary Program Accredited?  It's important that you confirm that the veterinary technician college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As earlier stated, one of the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone an extensive screening process that verifies you will receive a superior education. Also, accreditation is necessary if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since many programs are not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is frequently a requirement for employment for many Juneau AK area veterinary clinics and hospitals.

What is the Program's Reputation?  The veterinary college or vocational school and program you enroll in must have an outstanding reputation within the veterinary community. You can initiate your due diligence by asking the colleges you are interested in for testimonials from the employers in their job assistance network. Other tips include checking with online school rating websites and contacting the school's accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Alaska school licensing department if there have been any grievances or infractions involving your targeted schools. As a final recommendation, phone some Juneau AK vet clinics that you might want to work for after you go through your training. Ask what they think of your school choices. They might even suggest one or more colleges not on your list.

Are Internships Offered?  The most effective way to obtain clinical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a medical environment. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have internship programs set up with Juneau AK veterinarians, vet clinics or hospitals. The majority of veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many provide it by means of internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the practical training, but an internship can also help establish associations in the local vet community and aid in the search for a job after graduation.

Is there a Job Assistance Program?  Getting a job after graduating from a vet tech college may be difficult without the help of a job placement program. First, find out what the graduation rates are for the schools you are considering. A low rate might mean that the instructors were unqualified to teach the curriculum or that some students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. Next, verify that the colleges have a job assistance program and ask what their placement rates are. A high placement rate might mean that the school has an exceptional reputation within the Juneau AK vet community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate could signify that the training is not highly thought of by employers or that the job assistance program is a failure at placing students.

How Large are the Classes?  If the classes are larger sized, you most likely will receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Juneau AK colleges you are considering what their classroom student to teacher ratios are. You may also want to sit in on a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and instructors. Get feedback from students concerning 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 previously discussed location, but there are several more points to consider on the subject. If you are going to commute to your veterinary technician classes from your Juneau AK home, you need to make certain that the driving time fits into your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to check out the route won't be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, particularly if the school is located close by or within a larger city. Also, if you do choose to enroll in a college 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 online classes might be an alternative that will provide you with 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 flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue to work full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or at night near Juneau AK. Some might only be able to attend classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Make certain that the class times you require are available before enrolling. Also, find out if you can make up classes that you may miss due to sickness, work or family issues. You might find that an online program is the ideal solution to fit your veterinary training into your hectic life.

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