Become a Vet Tech | Vet Tech Schools Westlake OH

How to Pick a Veterinary Technician School near Westlake Ohio

Westlake OH vet tech diagnosing puppyFulfilling your lifelong dream of working with and helping animals by enrolling in a veterinary technician program near Westlake OH may initially seem like a daunting undertaking. After all, you must locate and enroll in a school that will deliver the necessary training so that you can succeed as a veterinary technician. But just how do you approach analyzing and comparing colleges so that you can make the ideal selection? Many potential students begin their due diligence process by looking for colleges that are close to their homes. Once they have located some area colleges, they determine which ones have the cheapest tuition and focus on those. Although location and expense are significant factors when assessing vet technician schools, they are not the only critical ones when making your assessments. Factors such as internship programs and accreditation need to be considered as well. The main idea is that there are questions you ought to be asking the vet technician programs you are evaluating before you make an ultimate decision. We have furnished several in this article to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll talk about the varied duties of veterinary technicians and the training options available.

The Job of a Vet Tech in Westlake OH 

cat with cone after surgery in Westlake OHOne of the first decisions that you will need to make is whether you plan to train as a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist. Part of your determination may be based on the amount of time and money that you have to devote to your training, but the main factor will most likely be which specialization interests you the most. What techs and assistants have in common is that they all work under the immediate supervision of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are a number of tasks that they can carry out within the Westlake OH veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe medicines, diagnose health issues, or perform surgeries. In those areas they can only provide support to a licensed veterinarian. There are technologists and technicians that work outside of the typical vet practice, for instance for zoos, animal shelters or police departments. Let’s take a look at the duties and training requirements for each specialization.

  • Vet Assistants in almost all cases will have completed a formal training program, either as an intern or apprentice 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 veterinarians and vet technicians in the performance of their duties. Normally they are not associated with more complex tasks, for example assisting with surgical procedures. Some of their usual functions may include working at the front desk, cleaning and preparing examination rooms and equipment, or controlling animals during examinations.
  • Vet Technicians go through more advanced training compared to assistants and normally obtain a 2 year Associate Degree, preferably from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their basic job duty is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they differ from veterinary assistants is that they are involved in more involved functions, such as assisting with surgical procedures or administering medicine. All states presently require vet techs pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
  • Vet Technologists are similar to vet technicians and essentially carry out the same job functions. They are required to attain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which typically requires 4 years to complete. So the main difference between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s higher level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more work opportunities, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are also mandated to pass a credentialing exam for either registration, certification or licensing.

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

Vet Tech Online Schools Offered in Westlake

student attending online vet tech school in Westlake OHAn approach that may make sense for those with a busy schedule or who are working full-time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online program. Because the classes are provided over the internet, students can attend on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The educational program is taught using several methods, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since most vet technician and technologist degrees require practical training, that portion can usually be fulfilled as an internship or work study program at a local Westlake OH veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances decrease the cost of your education. Tuition and supplementary costs, for instance for travel and study supplies, may be more affordable compared to more conventional classroom courses. Just make sure that the program that you select is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting agency. With the online classes and the clinical training, everything is provided for a complete education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more independent fashion, an online veterinary technician program may be the perfect choice for you.

Questions to Ask Westlake OH Veterinary Technician Colleges

Questions to ask Westlake OH vet tech schoolsBy now you probably have selected which veterinarian credential that you wish to attain, and if you intend to study online or attend a program on campus. Since there are an abundance of veterinary community colleges, vocational and technical schools in the Westlake OH area and across the United States, you need to ask some qualifying questions in order to narrow down your list of alternatives. As we discussed in our introduction, many future students start by concentrating on location and the cost of tuition. But we have previously mentioned other essential qualifiers, for instance internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you need to choose a program that offers the specialty and degree that you are interested in. These and other qualifications are covered in the list of questions that you should ask the veterinary technician programs that you are reviewing.

Is the Veterinary Program Accredited?  It’s essential that you confirm that the vet tech program you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As earlier discussed, one of the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have gone through a thorough 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 many programs are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited program is often a requirement for employment for a number of Westlake OH area vet clinics and hospitals.

What is the College’s Reputation?  The vet vocational school or college and program you choose must have an exceptional reputation within the vet field. You can start your due diligence by asking the colleges you are reviewing for testimonials from the employers in their job assistance network. Other tips include checking with online school ranking websites and checking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Ohio school licensing authority if there have been any grievances or violations involving your specific schools. As a final recommendation, call some Westlake OH vet clinics that you may wish to work for after you go through your training. Ask what they think of your school choices. They may even recommend one or more schools not on your list.

Are there Internship Programs?  The most effective approach to obtain clinical hands on training as a vet tech is to work in a professional setting. Ask if the schools you are looking at have internship programs established with Westlake OH veterinarians, vet hospitals or practices. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and many furnish it through internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the practical training, but an internship may also help develop relationships in the local vet community and aid in the search for employment after graduation.

Is Job Placement Provided?  Finding a job after graduating from a vet tech program may be challenging without the help of a job placement program. To begin with, ask what the graduation rates are for the schools you are evaluating. A lower rate could mean that the teachers were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that a number of students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. Next, confirm that the colleges have a job placement program and find out what their placement rates are. A high placement rate might mean that the college has an exceptional reputation within the Westlake OH veterinarian community and has a substantial network of contacts for student placements. A low rate might signify that the training is not highly thought of by employers or that the job assistance program is ineffective at placing students.

How Large are the Classes?  If the classes are larger, you most likely will get little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Request from the Westlake OH schools you are researching what their class teacher to student ratios are. You might also decide to sit in on a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between teachers and students. Get feedback from students regarding the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the teachers and find out what their backgrounds are as well as their methods of teaching.

Where is the Campus Located?  Yes, we previously covered location, but there are several more points to consider on the subject. If you are going to commute to your vet tech classes from your Westlake OH home, you need to make sure that the driving time is compatible with your schedule. For instance, 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 decide to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition costs especially for state and community colleges. Of course attending online classes may be an alternative that will provide you with more flexibility and decrease the need for travel.

Is the Class Schedule Flexible?  And last, it’s important that you determine if the veterinary colleges you are considering offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only attend classes on the weekends or at night near Westlake OH. Some might only be able to attend classes in the morning or later in the afternoon. Confirm that the class times you require are available prior to enrolling. Also, find out if you can make up classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies. You may find that an online school is the ideal solution to fit your veterinary training into your hectic life.

Enrolling in a Vet Tech School near Westlake OH?

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

Westlake, Ohio

The median income for a household in the city was $64,963, and the median income for a family was $81,223 (these figures had changed to $63,252 and $90,397 respectively as of a 2007 estimate).[13] Males had a median income of $60,429 versus $36,999 for females. The per capita income for the city was $37,142. About 1.3% of families and 2.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.7% of those under age 18 and 2.8% of those age 65 or over. Of the city's population over the age of 25, 50.1% hold a bachelor's degree or higher,[14] while 81.3% spoke English, 1.62% Arabic, 1.5% Spanish, 1.3% Greek, and 0.7% German and Chinese.[15]

As of the census[4] of 2010, there were 32,729 people, 13,870 households, and 8,443 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,054.6 inhabitants per square mile (793.3/km2). There were 14,843 housing units at an average density of 931.8 per square mile (359.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 91.2% White, 1.6% African American, 0.1% Native American, 4.9% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino people of any race were 2.5% of the population.

There were 13,870 households of which 26.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.4% were married couples living together, 6.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 39.1% were non-families. Of all households 34.2% were made up of individuals and 13.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 3.01.

Select the Best Vet Tech Program near Westlake OH

Westlake OH vet tech holding dogChoosing the appropriate vet tech college is a crucial first step to beginning a fulfilling career providing treatment and care for pets and livestock. Potential students thinking about veterinary technician schools must make their determination based on several key factors. Veterinary technicians and technologists are employed in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They usually handle administrative duties and assist the veterinarian with the animals as needed. As we have discussed, it’s essential that you select a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the profession. This applies to online vet tech colleges as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for assessing schools, you will be able to narrow down your alternatives so that you can make your final decision. And by selecting the best college, you can reach your goal of becoming a veterinary technician in Westlake OH.

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