Become a Vet Tech | Vet Tech Schools Berkeley CA

How to Select a Veterinary Technician Program near Berkeley California

Berkeley CA vet tech diagnosing puppyRealizing your long term dream of working with and helping pets by enrolling in a vet tech college near Berkeley CA could initially seem like a challenging endeavor. After all, you must search for and enroll in a program that will furnish the necessary training so that you can be successful as a veterinary technician. But just how do you approach assessing and contrasting schools so that you can make the ideal selection? Many future students launch their due diligence process by looking for schools that are close to their residences. When they have identified some nearby schools, they find out which ones have the cheapest tuition and focus on those. Although location and expense are important factors when comparing vet technician schools, they are by no means the only critical ones when making your evaluations. Factors such as accreditation and internship programs should be looked into as well. The main idea is that there are questions you need to be asking the vet technician programs you are considering before you make an ultimate selection. We have presented several within this article to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll go over the different responsibilities of vet techs and the training alternatives offered.

The Job of a Veterinary Technician in Berkeley CA 

cat with cone after surgery in Berkeley CAAmong the initial decisions that you will have to make is if you wish to train as a vet assistant, technologist or technician. Part of your determination may be based on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your education, but the primary determiner will probably be which specialty interests you the most. What technicians and assistants have in common is that they each work under the direct guidance of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And although there are numerous jobs that they can carry out within the Berkeley CA veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medicines, diagnose health issues, or conduct surgeries. In those areas they may only furnish support to a licensed vet. There are technicians and technologists that work outside of the typical veterinarian practice, such as for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the duties and training prerequisites for each position.

  • Vet Assistants in the majority of instances will have undergone a structured training program, either as an apprentice or intern in a vet clinic or hospital, or by finishing a certificate program at a community college or trade school. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the execution of their duties. Normally they are not associated with more complicated tasks, for instance assisting with surgeries. Some of their regular responsibilities may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing examination rooms and equipment, or handling pets during examinations.
  • Vet Technicians undergo more extensive training in contrast to assistants and typically acquire a 2 year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinary counterparts of medical nurses, since their basic job duty is to assist vets with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they vary from veterinary assistants is that they are included in more complicated functions, for example assisting with surgeries or administering medication. All states currently mandate that veterinary technicians pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
  • Vet Technologists are similar to veterinary technicians and essentially perform the same work functions. They are mandated to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which generally takes four years. Therefore the only real difference between a vet technologist and a technician is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more job options, higher salaries and potential management positions. They are also mandated to pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.

Vet technicians and technologists can specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or urgent care. Many may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in  Berkeley CA laboratories or research facilities as well.

Veterinary Technician Online Schools Offered in Berkeley

student attending online vet tech school in Berkeley CAAn approach that may be a solution for those with a busy schedule or who are working full-time while attending veterinary college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are offered through the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The curriculum is taught using several venues, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since the majority of vet tech and technologist degrees require clinical training, that segment can normally be completed as an internship or work study program at a local Berkeley CA veterinary clinic or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, can in some instances lower the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary expenses, such as for travel and study materials, may be more affordable compared to more traditional classroom courses. Just be sure that the online school that you enroll in is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting organization. With the online courses and the practical training, everything is furnished for a comprehensive education. So if you are disciplined enough to learn in this more self-reliant fashion, an online vet tech program may be the right option for you.

Questions to Ask Berkeley CA Vet Tech Programs

Questions to ask Berkeley CA vet tech schoolsBy now you should have selected which veterinary degree that you would like to obtain, and if you want to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are an abundance of vet community colleges, technical and vocational schools in the Berkeley CA area as well as across the USA, you must ask some qualifying questions in order to narrow down your list of alternatives. As we mentioned in our opening, many prospective students start by focusing on location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously touched on other essential qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And naturally you want to enroll in a college that offers the degree and specialty that you are interested in. These and other factors are covered in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the veterinary technician programs that you are looking at.

Is the Veterinary Program Accredited?  It’s imperative that you make sure that the vet tech program you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As earlier mentioned, one of the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a thorough screening process that ensures you will receive a superior education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, since numerous programs are not obtainable for non-accredited programs. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited program is frequently a requirement for employment for many Berkeley CA area veterinarian clinics and hospitals.

What is the Program’s Reputation?  The veterinary college or vocational school and program you choose must have an exceptional reputation within the veterinary field. You can begin your due diligence by asking the colleges you are reviewing for endorsements from the employers in their job placement network. Other suggestions include checking with internet school rating websites and speaking with the school’s accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the California school licensing department if there have been any grievances or infractions involving your specific schools. As a final suggestion, get in touch with some Berkeley CA veterinarians that you may wish to work for after you go through your training. Find out what they think of your school selections. They might even suggest some programs not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The most effective approach to get 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 set up with Berkeley CA veterinarians, vet hospitals or clinics. Almost all veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number provide it through internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial as far as the practical training, but an internship can also help build connections in the local veterinary community and assist in the search for employment after graduation.

Is there a Job Assistance Program?  Getting a job after graduating from a veterinary technician school may be difficult without the assistance of a job placement program. First, find out what the graduation rates are for the programs you are considering. A low rate might indicate that the teachers were unqualified to teach the syllabus or that some students were unhappy with the program and quit. Next, verify that the colleges have a job placement program and find out what their placement rates are. A high placement rate may mean that the school has an excellent reputation within the Berkeley CA veterinary community and has a significant network of contacts for student placements. A low rate could indicate that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job assistance program is a failure at placing students.

How Big are the Classes?  If the classes are larger in size, you most likely will get little or no personalized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Berkeley CA programs you are researching what their class student to teacher ratios are. You may also want to sit in on a few classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between students and instructors. Get evaluations from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the teachers and find out what their qualifications are as well as their approaches to teaching.

Where is the School Located?  Yes, we already discussed location, but there are several more points to make on the subject. If you are going to drive to your vet tech classes from your Berkeley CA home, you must make sure that the driving time is compatible with your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the commute during rush hour traffic, especially if the school is located near or in a larger city. Also, 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 particularly for community and state colleges. Of course taking online classes could be an option that will give you more flexibility and reduce the necessity for travel.

Is the Class Schedule Flexible?  And finally, it’s imperative that you ascertain if the veterinarian schools you are evaluating offer class times flexible enough to accommodate your schedule. For example, a number of students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night near Berkeley CA. Others may only be able to attend class in the morning or in the afternoon. Make certain that the class times you require are offered prior to enrolling. In addition, determine if you can make-up classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family issues. You may discover that an online college is the ideal solution to fit your vet training into your active life.

Enrolling in a Vet Tech School near Berkeley CA?

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

Berkeley, California

Berkeley (/ˈbɜːrkli/ BURK-lee) is a city on the east shore of San Francisco Bay in northern Alameda County, California. It is named after the 18th-century Irish bishop and philosopher George Berkeley. It borders the cities of Oakland and Emeryville to the south and the city of Albany and the unincorporated community of Kensington to the north. Its eastern border with Contra Costa County generally follows the ridge of the Berkeley Hills. The 2010 census recorded a population of 112,580.

Berkeley is home to the oldest campus in the University of California system, the University of California, Berkeley, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, which is managed and operated by the University. It also has the Graduate Theological Union, one of the largest religious studies institutions in the world. Berkeley is one of the most socially liberal cities in the United States.

The site of today's City of Berkeley was the territory of the Chochenyo/Huchiun band of the Ohlone people when the first Europeans arrived.[12] Evidence of their existence in the area include pits in rock formations, which they used to grind acorns, and a shellmound, now mostly leveled and covered up, along the shoreline of San Francisco Bay at the mouth of Strawberry Creek. Other artifacts were discovered in the 1950s in the downtown area during remodeling of a commercial building, near the upper course of the creek.

Choose the Right Veterinary Technician School near Berkeley CA

Berkeley CA vet tech holding dogPicking the ideal veterinary technician program is a critical first step to starting a fulfilling career providing care and treatment for pets and livestock. Potential students considering vet tech colleges must make their decision based on several key issues. Veterinary technicians and technologists are employed in veterinary clinics and hospitals and animal shelters. They typically handle administrative tasks and assist the veterinarian with the animals as needed. As we have discussed, it’s very important that you decide on a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the field. This goes for vet tech online 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 choice. And by selecting the ideal school, you can reach your goal of becoming a veterinary technician in Berkeley CA.

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