Become a Vet Tech | Vet Tech Schools Atherton CA

How to Select a Veterinary Technician Program near Atherton California

Atherton CA vet tech diagnosing puppyAchieving your long term dream of working with and helping animals by enrolling in a veterinary technician school near Atherton CA could initially feel like an overwhelming task. After all, you have to locate and enroll in a school that will deliver the proper training to ensure that you can be successful as a veterinary technician. But just how do you tackle reviewing and comparing schools so that you can make the correct choice? Many future students launch their due diligence process by searching for schools that are close to their residences. Once they have found some nearby colleges, they find out which ones have the lowest tuition and focus on those. Although expense and location are significant factors when assessing vet technician schools, they are not the only critical ones when making your assessments. Qualifications such as internship programs and accreditation need to be evaluated also. The point is that there are questions you need to be asking the vet tech schools you are considering before you make a final selection. We have furnished several within this article to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll go over the different duties of vet techs and the training options offered.

The Job of a Veterinary Technician in Atherton CA 

cat with cone after surgery in Atherton CAOne of the initial decisions that you will have to make is if you plan to train as a veterinary technician, assistant or technologist. Part of your preference may be dependent on the amount of time and money that you have to invest in your training, but the primary factor will undoubtedly 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 many functions that they can perform within the Atherton CA veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe medicines, diagnose health issues, or conduct surgical procedures. In those areas they can only furnish assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technicians and technologists that work away from the conventional veterinarian practice, for instance for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the job functions and education prerequisites for each position.

  • Vet Assistants in almost all cases will have undergone a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a vet clinic or hospital, or by completing a certificate program at a vocational school or community college. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet techs in the completion of their duties. Generally they are not associated with more complicated undertakings, such as assisting with surgical procedures. A few of their usual responsibilities may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning examination rooms and equipment, or controlling pets during exams.
  • Vet Technicians receive more extensive training compared with assistants and typically earn a two year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the vet equivalent of medical nurses, since their fundamental job function is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from vet assistants is that they are included in more complex functions, for example assisting with surgical procedures or administering medication. All states presently require vet techs pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
  • Vet Technologists are comparable to veterinary technicians and for the most part perform the same work functions. They are required to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which typically requires 4 years. So the main difference between a vet technologist and a technician is the technologist’s higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more career opportunities, higher salaries and possible management positions. They are also required to pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.

Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or emergency care. A number may obtain certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in  Atherton CA labs or research facilities also.

Vet Tech Online Programs Offered in Atherton

student attending online vet tech school in Atherton CAAn option that might make sense for those with a busy schedule or who are working full time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online training program. Since the classes are offered via the internet, students can attend on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The educational program is taught using various methods, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of vet tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can usually be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Atherton CA veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, can in many instances decrease the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary expenses, for instance for commuting and study materials, can be lower compared to more standard classroom programs. Just make sure that the online school that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting organization. With the online classes and the practical training, everything is provided for a complete education. So if you are disciplined enough to learn in this more self-reliant mode, an online vet tech program may be the right choice for you.

What to Ask Atherton CA Veterinary Technician Programs

Questions to ask Atherton CA vet tech schoolsAt this point you probably have selected which veterinarian credential that you would like to obtain, and if you prefer to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, vocational and trade schools in the Atherton CA area as well as across the Country, you should ask some relevant questions to help fine tune your list of alternatives. As we mentioned in our introduction, many future students start by concentrating on location and the cost of tuition. But we have already mentioned other significant qualifiers, for instance internship programs and accreditation. And of course you want to select a college that offers the specialty and degree that you would like to earn. These and other factors are reviewed in the checklist of questions that you should ask the vet tech schools that you are looking at.

Is the Veterinary Program Accredited?  It’s important that you verify that the veterinary technician program you choose is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As previously discussed, among 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 screening process that confirms you will receive a quality education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since a large number of programs are not available for non-accredited programs. Last, having a certificate or degree from an accredited program is in many cases a prerequisite for employment for many Atherton CA area vet practices and hospitals.

What is the School’s Reputation?  The veterinarian trade school or college and program you select should have an outstanding reputation within the veterinary field. You can start your due diligence by asking the schools you are interested in for testimonials from the employers in their job placement network. Other suggestions include looking on online school rating websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the California school licensing authority if there have been any grievances or violations relating to your targeted schools. As a final suggestion, contact some Atherton CA veterinary clinics that you might wish to work for after you go through your training. Find out what they think of your school selections. They might even recommend some schools not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The best means to get practical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a medical environment. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have internship programs arranged with Atherton CA veterinarians, vet practices or hospitals. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate clinical training and many furnish it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be valuable as far as the clinical training, but an internship can also help establish associations in the local veterinary community and help in the search for employment after graduation.

Is Job Placement Offered?  Getting a job after graduating from a vet tech college can be challenging without the assistance of a job placement program. First, ask what the graduation rates are for the programs you are evaluating. A low rate might signify that the instructors were unqualified to teach the course of study or that a number of students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. Next, verify that the schools have a job placement program and find out what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate may signify that the school has an outstanding reputation within the Atherton CA veterinarian community and has a substantial 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 ineffective at placing students.

How Large are the Classes?  If the classes are larger, you probably will receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Atherton CA colleges you are considering what their class student to teacher ratios are. You might also want to participate in a couple of classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between students and teachers. Get evaluations from students concerning the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the instructors and find out 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 vet tech classes from your Atherton CA home, you must confirm that the driving time fits into your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to check out the route won’t be the same as the commute during rush hour traffic, especially if the school is located close by or within a larger city. In addition, if you do decide to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be increased tuition fees especially for community and state colleges. Of course taking online classes may be an option that will provide you with more flexibility and minimize the necessity for travel.

Is the Class Schedule Flexible?  And last, it’s essential that you determine if the vet schools you are looking at offer class times flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For instance, many students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night near Atherton CA. Some might only be able to go to class in the morning or in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you need are available before enrolling. In addition, find out if you can make-up classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies. You might discover that an online program is the best solution to fit your veterinary education into your active life.

Enrolling in a Vet Tech School near Atherton CA?

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

Atherton, California

Atherton is an incorporated town in San Mateo County, California, United States. Its population was 7,159 as of 2013. In 1990, Atherton was ranked as having the highest per capita income among U.S. towns with a population between 2,500 and 9,999,[11] and it is regularly ranked among the most expensive ZIP Codes in the country.[12][13][14]

In 1866, Atherton was known as Fair Oaks, and was a flag stop on the California Coast Line of the Southern Pacific Railroad between San Francisco and San Jose for the convenience of the owners of the large estates who lived north of Menlo Park. The entire area was called Menlo Park. It had been part of the Rancho de las Pulgas that had covered most of the area, which is now southern San Mateo County. There were several attempts to incorporate Fair Oaks, one in 1874 and another in 1911.

In 1923, Menlo Park wished to incorporate its lands to include the Fair Oaks lands. During a meeting of the representatives of the two communities, it became clear to the Fair Oaks property owners that in order to maintain their community as a strictly residential area, they would have to incorporate separately. Both groups rushed to Sacramento but the Fair Oaks committee arrived first. It was at that time they realized that they could not keep the name Fair Oaks, as it was already the name of a town near Sacramento. It was decided to honor Faxon Dean Atherton who had been one of the first property owners in the south peninsula and name the town for him. Atherton was incorporated on September 12, 1923. That same year, in 1923, the Menlo Polo Club was founded in Atherton.[15][16]

Choose the Ideal Vet Tech Program near Atherton CA

Atherton CA vet tech holding dogPicking the ideal vet tech college is a crucial first step to starting a fulfilling career providing care and treatment for animals. Future students thinking about veterinary technician programs must make their selection based on a number of key issues. Veterinary technicians and technologists work in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They commonly take on administrative responsibilities and support the veterinarian with the animal patients when needed. As we have covered, it’s imperative that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the profession. This goes for online vet tech schools as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for assessing schools, you will be able to narrow down your options so that you can make your final decision. And by choosing the right program, you can reach your goal of becoming a veterinary technician in Atherton CA.

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