Are you interested in a career as a Veterinarian? Becoming a Veterinarian is a rewarding career path. If you are interested in becoming a vet, you will need to attend several years of undergraduate level course work in order to meet the required course limit to apply for a seat within a veterinary medical program. Veterinary Technology at NDSU trains the care givers that work alongside the veterinarians to provide excellent animal care and nursing and may not be the correct major for a student ultimately planning to attend vet school.
No specific major is required when attending your undergraduate program, however, working towards a degree while taking classes you enjoy can increase your success rate. To better prepare for attending veterinary school, visit the website of the college/s you are interested in attending and view the required pre-requisite courses. These courses can then be completed at NDSU as you work on your regular degree requirements. Within the Department of Animal Sciences you can pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Sciences or Equine Sciences. The Department of Animal Sciences has a long history of educating young people with an interest in animal agriculture. Graduates hold influential positions with many different livestock organizations, agricultural companies, in the academic world, and in government.
WHAT IS A VETERINARY TECHNICIAN?
Veterinary technicians are important members of the animal health care team. They primarily function as professional technical support to veterinarians, biomedical researchers, and other scientists. Through the 1950s, veterinarians trained their own employees, delegating routine tasks and procedures as they saw fit. These on-the-job trained individuals were designated animal assistants, animal attendants, and veterinary assistants. They were trained to meet the needs of an individual practice. If people wanted to move to another practice, they would have to start over again being trained in the ways of the new practice.
To meet the technical demands of an expanding veterinary profession and a more mobile population, formal academic programs started appearing in the 1960s. Today there are over 160 veterinary technology programs in the United States that educate veterinary technicians. In order to maintain a standard of excellence these programs are accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association. The course of study in these programs entails at least two academic years, leading to an Associate of Science or equivalent degree with four-year Bachelor of Science degrees available at some institutions. During high school, would-be veterinary technicians are encouraged to enroll in college preparatory courses in science, math and English.
In today's fast-paced, high-tech world, veterinarians and other scientists must maintain high standards of animal care. The veterinary technician is an important contributor to this effort. The technician possesses the skills to handle many aspects of patient care, as well as to perform many laboratory procedures.
Routine areas of responsibility qualified veterinary technicians assume include:
- Physical Examination and Patient History
- Client Education
- Caring for the Hospitalized Patient
- Administration of Medication and Vaccines
- Clinical Laboratory Procedures
- Dental Prophylaxis
- Surgical Assisting
- Office/ Hospital Management
Veterinary Technicians can also find work in a number of areas outside of clinical veterinary practice. A Bachelors degree in Veterinary Technology opens many more opportunities for the veterinary technician. Positions in teaching, industry, research, government and private business can be obtained.
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Students in the Veterinary Technology program at NDSU interact closely with the faculty and staff, the animals, and other students. We strive to give every student the opportunity to practice and gain confidence in their skills and put their knowledge to full use while in the program. This is accomplished in our lab courses and in our Veterinary Wellness Clinic where students are assigned tasks to complete on both in-house animals and with animals from our local animal adoption agencies.