Become a Vet Tech | Vet Tech Schools Fairbanks AK

How to Pick a Veterinary Technician Program near Fairbanks Alaska

Fairbanks AK vet tech diagnosing puppyFulfilling your lifelong goal of working with and caring for pets by enrolling in a veterinary technician school near Fairbanks AK could at first feel like an overwhelming task. After all, you must locate and enroll in a school that will provide the appropriate training so that you can succeed as a veterinary technician. But just how do you approach evaluating and comparing programs so that you can make the best selection? Many future students launch their due diligence process by searching for colleges that are close to their homes. When they have found some area schools, they ascertain which ones have the lowest tuition and focus on those. Although cost and location are important factors when evaluating vet technician schools, they are not the only important ones when making your assessments. Qualifiers such as internship programs and accreditation should be looked into also. The point is that there are questions you should be asking the vet tech programs you are evaluating before you make a final selection. We have furnished several within this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll explore the different duties of vet techs and the training alternatives offered.

The Function of a Vet Tech in Fairbanks AK 

cat with cone after surgery in Fairbanks AKOne of the initial decisions that you will have to make is if you wish to train as a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist. Part of your preference might be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to invest in your training, but the principal determiner will most likely be which specialization appeals to you the most. What techs and assistants have in common is that they each work under the direct direction of a practicing and licensed veterinarian. And while there are numerous jobs that they can carry out within the Fairbanks AK veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medications, diagnose conditions, or conduct surgical procedures. In those areas they may only provide support to a licensed veterinarian. There are technologists and technicians that work outside of the standard vet practice, for example for animal shelters, zoos or police departments. Let’s take a look at the duties and education requirements for each specialization.

  • Vet Assistants in the majority of instances will have gone through a formal training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a vet clinic or hospital, or by graduating from a certificate program at a community college or vocational school. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the veterinarians and vet technicians in the execution of their duties. Usually they are not associated with more involved undertakings, for example assisting with surgical procedures. A few of their regular functions may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing exam rooms and equipment, or handling animals during exams.
  • Vet Technicians get more advanced training compared to assistants and normally acquire a 2 year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the vet counterparts of medical nurses, since their fundamental job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they vary from vet assistants is that they are involved in more involved tasks, for example assisting with surgeries or providing medicine. All states presently mandate that vet techs pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.
  • Vet Technologists are similar to vet techs and for the most part carry out the same job functions. They are mandated to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which generally takes 4 years. So the main distinction between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more work options, higher salaries and possible management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing examination for either certification, registration or licensing.

Vet techs and technologists may specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or emergency care. A number may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in  Fairbanks AK laboratories or research facilities also.

Vet Tech Online Programs Offered in Fairbanks

student attending online vet tech school in Fairbanks AKAn option that might make sense for those with a hectic lifestyle or who are working full time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are made available through the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The curriculum is taught using various methods, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since most veterinary tech and technologist degrees require practical training, that segment can normally be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Fairbanks AK veterinary clinic or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances lower the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary costs, for example for travel and study supplies, may be more affordable compared to more conventional classroom courses. Just confirm that the program that you choose is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally recognized accrediting organization. With the online courses and the practical training, everything is provided for a comprehensive education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more self-reliant manner, an online veterinary technician program may be the perfect choice for you.

Things to Ask Fairbanks AK Veterinary Technician Schools

Questions to ask Fairbanks AK vet tech schoolsAt this point you should have selected which veterinary credential that you wish to obtain, and if you intend to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are an abundance of veterinarian community colleges, technical and vocational schools in the Fairbanks AK area and across the Country, you should ask some qualifying questions in order to narrow down your list of options. As we discussed in our introduction, many potential students start by prioritizing location and the cost of tuition. But we have already pointed out other important qualifiers, for example accreditation and internship programs. And naturally you need to select a college that offers the degree and specialty that you want to earn. These and other qualifications are covered in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the veterinary technician schools that you are looking at.

Is the Veterinary Program Accredited?  It’s imperative that you verify that the veterinary technician college you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously discussed, among the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Vocational schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a rigorous review process that ensures you will obtain a superior education. Also, accreditation is important if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, since a large number of programs are not obtainable for non-accredited programs. And finally, having a certificate or degree from an accredited school is frequently a prerequisite for employment for a number of Fairbanks AK area veterinarian clinics and hospitals.

What is the Program’s Reputation?  The veterinary vocational school or college and program you select must have an excellent reputation within the veterinary field. You can start your due diligence by asking the schools you are looking at for endorsements from the employers in their job assistance network. Other tips include looking on online school rating websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Alaska school licensing authority if there have been any complaints or violations involving your specific schools. As a final pointer, phone some Fairbanks AK vet clinics that you might wish to work for after you go through your training. Ask what they think about your school choices. They may even suggest some schools not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The most effective way to obtain clinical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a medical environment. Find out if the programs you are considering have internship programs arranged with Fairbanks AK veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. Almost all veterinary medicine programs require practical training and many furnish it through internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable regarding the practical training, but an internship can also help build connections in the local vet community and aid in the search for a position after graduation.

Is there a Job Placement Program?  Searching for a job after graduating from a vet tech college can be difficult without the assistance of a job placement program. First, ask what the graduation rates are for the colleges you are reviewing. A low rate could signify that the instructors were unqualified to teach the course of study or that some students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. Next, check that the colleges have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate could mean that the school has an outstanding reputation within the Fairbanks AK veterinarian community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A low rate might signify that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job placement program is a failure at placing students.

How Big are the Classes?  If the classes are bigger, you may get little or no one-on-one instruction from the teachers. Request from the Fairbanks AK schools you are looking at what their classroom teacher to student ratios are. You might also want to sit in on a couple of classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between students and instructors. Ask for evaluations from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and determine what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.

Where is the Campus Located?  Of course, we already talked about location, but there are a couple of more points to make on the subject. If you are planning to drive to your veterinary technician classes from your Fairbanks AK home, you must confirm that the driving time is compatible with 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 near or in a large city. In addition, if you do choose to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition fees particularly for community and state colleges. Of course attending classes online could be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and decrease the necessity for travel.

Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule?  And finally, it’s essential that you ascertain if the veterinarian schools you are considering offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to fit your schedule. For example, many students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or in the evenings near Fairbanks AK. Others might only be able to attend class in the morning or later in the afternoon. Make sure that the class times you require are available before enrolling. Also, determine if you can make up classes that you may miss because of sickness, work or family emergencies. You may find that an online school is the best solution to fit your veterinary education into your hectic life.

Enrolling in a Vet Tech School near Fairbanks AK?

If you have decided to attend a Veterinary Technician Program in the Fairbanks Alaska area, then you may find the following information about the location of your school campus interesting and informing.

Fairbanks, Alaska

Fairbanks is the largest city in the Interior region of Alaska. 2016 estimates put the population of the city proper at 32,751, and the population of the Fairbanks North Star Borough at 97,121,[6] making it the second most populous metropolitan area in Alaska (after Anchorage). The Metropolitan Statistical Area encompasses all of the Fairbanks North Star Borough and is the northernmost Metropolitan Statistical Area in the United States, located 196 driving miles (or 140 air miles) south of the Arctic Circle. Fairbanks is home to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the founding campus of the University of Alaska system.

Though, as of yet, there is not a known permanent Alaska Native settlement at the site of Fairbanks, Athabascan peoples have used the area for thousands of years. An archaeological site excavated on the grounds of the University of Alaska Fairbanks uncovered a Native camp about 3,500 years old, with older remains found at deeper levels.[7] From evidence gathered at the site,archaeologists surmise that Native activities in the area were limited to seasonal hunting and fishing as frigid temperatures precluded berry gathering .[8] In addition, archeological sites on the grounds of nearby Fort Wainwright date back well over 10,000 years.[9] Arrowheads excavated from the University of Alaska Fairbanks site matched similar items found in Asia, providing some of the first evidence that humans arrived in North America via the Bering Strait land bridge in deep antiquity.[7]

Captain E. T. Barnette founded Fairbanks in August 1901 while headed to Tanacross (or Tanana Crossing, where the Valdez–Eagle trail crossed the Tanana River), where he intended to set up a trading post. The steamboat on which Barnette was a passenger, the Lavelle Young, ran aground while attempting to negotiate shallow water. Barnette, along with his party and supplies, were deposited along the banks of the Chena River 7 miles (11 km) upstream from its confluence with the Tanana River. The sight of smoke from the steamer's engines caught the attention of gold prospectors working in the hills to the north, most notably an Italian immigrant named Felice Pedroni (better known as Felix Pedro) and his partner Tom Gilmore. The two met Barnette where he disembarked and convinced him of the potential of the area. Barnette set up his trading post at the site, still intending to eventually make it to Tanacross.[10] Teams of gold prospectors soon congregated in and around the newly founded Fairbanks; they built drift mines, dredges, and lode mines in addition to panning and sluicing.[11]

Choose the Ideal Veterinary Technician Program near Fairbanks AK

Fairbanks AK vet tech holding dogEnrolling in the appropriate veterinary technician college is an important first step to beginning a fulfilling career providing treatment and care for pets and livestock. Students considering vet tech colleges must make their decision based on a number of key issues. Veterinary technicians and technologists work in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They usually take on administrative responsibilities and support the veterinarian with the animals when needed. As we have discussed, it’s essential that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the profession. This applies to vet tech online programs as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for evaluating schools, you will be able to narrow down your alternatives so that you can make your final choice. And by choosing the best program, you can accomplish your goal of becoming a vet tech in Fairbanks AK.

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