Online veterinary technician programs teach students about caring for animals on a professional level. While enrolled, they will learn about anatomy, physiology, and the illnesses from which domesticated animals may suffer. They will also gain important communication and recordkeeping skills, which will enable them to work in veterinary office environments. Upon graduating, students will go on to find employment at animal hospitals, clinics, rescue organizations, or shelters. They will use what they have learned to improve upon the lives of both pets and their owners.
Types of Veterinary Technician Certificates
There is only one type of online veterinary technician certificate and that is the vocational certificate. Also known as a certificate in veterinary technology, this program is designed to teach students everything they need to know about working in the veterinary field. While enrolled, students will gain exposure to equipment, such as x-rays, and animal anatomy. They will learn how to safely handle animals and how to sanitize kennels and examination rooms. Most importantly, they will gain the experience necessary for assisting veterinarians throughout every day work. Many programs include course work over animal pharmacology as well. Although admission requirements for these programs will vary, students are typically required to submit the following to veterinarian technology schools:
- High school diploma or equivalent.
Some programs are structured to lead to licensure. However, due the varying requirements among states, it is best for the student to do some research to determine what they need to do to acquire a veterinarian technician license. Although they are not always part of the veterinary technician curriculum, internships in the field can help students gain valuable hands-on experience, which in turn can benefit their careers. Depending upon those individual requirements, it can take a student anywhere between a year to two years to complete the certificate. Students who take classes on a part-time basis will be enrolled longer than full-time students.
What’s Next for Certificate Holders?
After graduating, students typically go on to become veterinary technicians. As such, they will help veterinarians conduct tests and handle domesticated animals. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the position is growing very rapidly, with career field expansion projected at 52% by 2020. The BLS also reports that veterinary technicians earn around $31,470 annually, although that figure can vary across locations and experience levels.
Although there are no other certificates in veterinary technician available to students, those who want higher education can see to earn associate degrees in the field. Associate degrees can improve job prospects and can help students earn a higher wage. Those who want to continue beyond the associate degree level can consider bachelor’s degrees in pre-vet studies or graduate degrees in veterinary studies. Other possible areas of study include animal behavior, animal science, or zoology.