How to Find the Right Veterinary Assistant School near Dahlonega Georgia
Achieving your lifelong dream of working with and helping animals by enrolling in a veterinarian college near Dahlonega GA could initially feel like an overwhelming task. After all, you need to locate and enroll in a program that will furnish the appropriate training so that you can be successful as a vet technician, assistant or technologist. But just how do you go about assessing and contrasting programs so that you can make the right selection? Many potential students begin their due diligence process by searching for schools that are near their residences. Once they have identified some nearby schools, they find out which ones have the lowest tuition and focus on those. Although cost and location are significant considerations when evaluating vet tech schools, they are not the only critical ones when making your evaluations. Factors such as accreditation and internship programs need to be evaluated as well. The main idea is that there are questions you need to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are considering before you make a final decision. We have furnished several within this article in order to help get you started, but before we discuss them we’ll go over the various responsibilities of veterinary techs and assistants and the training options offered.
The Responsibilities of a Veterinary Assistant and Tech
One of the initial decisions that you will need to make is if you plan to train as a vet assistant, technologist or technician. Part of your determination might be predicated on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your education, but the primary determiner will probably be which specialization interests you the most. What vet techs and assistants have in common is that they each work under the immediate direction of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are a number of duties that they can perform within the Dahlonega GA veterinary practice or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose ailments, or perform surgeries. In those areas they can only furnish assistance to a licensed veterinarian. There are technologists and technicians that work away from the conventional veterinarian practice, such as for zoos, animal shelters or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the job functions and training prerequisites for each position.
- Vet Assistants in the majority of instances will have undergone a structured training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a vet clinic or hospital, or by graduating from a certificate program at a trade school or community college near Dahlonega GA. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the veterinarians and vet technicians in the completion of their duties. Generally they are not involved with more complex tasks, such as assisting with surgeries. A few of their typical responsibilities may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning exam rooms and equipment, or controlling pets during exams.
- Vet Technicians undergo more extensive training compared to assistants and generally obtain a two year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a fashion the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their general job function is to assist veterinarians with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from veterinary assistants is that they are involved in more complicated duties, such as assisting with surgeries or administering medication. All states presently require veterinary techs pass a credentialing exam for either licensing, registration or certification.
- Vet Technologists are similar to veterinary techs and for the most part carry out the same work functions. They are required to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which generally takes 4 years. So the only real difference between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more job opportunities, higher salaries and potential management positions. They are additionally required to pass a credentialing examination for either certification, registration or licensing.
Vet techs and technologists can specialize in areas such as internal medicine, anesthesia or urgent care. Some may acquire certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in laboratories or Dahlonega GA area research facilities also.
Online Veterinarian Training Classes
An option that may be a solution for those with a busy lifestyle or who are working full-time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are provided by means of the internet, students can attend on their own timetable wherever a computer is available. The educational program is taught using various venues, including videos, slide shows and live streaming webinars. And since many vet technician and technologist degrees require clinical training, that segment can normally be completed as an internship or work study program at an area Dahlonega GA veterinarian practice or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, can in some instances lower the cost of your education. Tuition and ancillary costs, for instance for traveling and study supplies, may be lower compared to more conventional 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 included for a comprehensive education. So if you are dedicated enough to learn in this more self-reliant manner, an online veterinary tech or assistant program may be the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Veterinary Assistant and Technician Programs
At this point you should have determined which veterinarian certificate or degree that you wish to obtain, and if you want to study online or attend a school on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, technical and vocational schools in Georgia and across the United States, you should ask some qualifying questions in order to fine tune your list of alternatives. As we mentioned in our introduction, many potential students start by prioritizing location and the cost of tuition. But we have already pointed out other essential qualifiers, such as internship programs and accreditation. And obviously you want to choose a school that offers the degree and specialty that you would like to earn. These and other factors are reviewed in the checklist of questions that you need to ask the Dahlonega GA veterinary technician and assistant programs that you are considering.
Is the Veterinary School Accredited? It’s important that you verify that the vet assistant or technician college you enroll in is accredited by a regional or national accrediting organization. As previously discussed, one of the most highly regarded is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone a thorough review process that ensures you will get a quality education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, since numerous programs are not obtainable for non-accredited programs. Last, having a degree or certificate from an accredited college is often a requirement for employment for a number of Dahlonega GA veterinarian practices and hospitals.
What is the Program’s Reputation? The vet college or vocational school and program you enroll in should have an exceptional reputation within the veterinarian field. You can initiate your due diligence by asking the schools you are looking at for testimonials from the employers in their job assistance network. Other pointers include checking with internet school ranking websites and checking with the school’s accrediting agencies as well. You can ask the Georgia school licensing department if there have been any grievances or violations involving your targeted schools. As a final pointer, phone some Dahlonega GA veterinary clinics that you may want to work for after you receive your training. Ask what they think about your school choices. They may even recommend one or more colleges not on your list.
Are Internships Offered? The most effective means to obtain practical hands on training as a vet technician or assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have internship programs arranged with local veterinarians, vet hospitals or clinics. The majority of veterinary medicine programs require practical training and a large number furnish it through internships. Not only will the experience be beneficial regarding the clinical training, but an internship can also help build associations in the local Dahlonega GA veterinarian community and aid in the search for a job after graduation.
Is Job Placement Offered? Finding a job after graduating from a vet assistant or technician program may be difficult without the assistance of a job placement program. To start with, ask what the graduation rates are for the schools you are evaluating. A low rate might signify that the teachers were ineffective at teaching the course of study or that some students were unhappy with the program and quit. Next, check that the colleges have a job assistance program and ask what their placement rates are. A high placement rate could indicate that the Dahlonega GA school has an exceptional reputation within the veterinary community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A lower rate may signify that the training is not well thought of 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 probably will receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Solicit from the Dahlonega GA colleges you are looking at what their class student to teacher ratios are. You may also decide to attend a couple of classes (if practical) to observe the interaction between teachers and students. Ask for feedback from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, talk with the instructors and find out what their backgrounds are as well as their methods of teaching.
Where is the School Located? Yes, we already covered location, but there are a couple of more points to consider on the subject. If you are planning to drive to your vet tech classes from home or work, you need to confirm that the commuting time is compatible with your schedule. For instance, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, particularly if the Dahlonega GA school is located close by or within a larger city. Also, if you do choose to attend a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition charges especially for community and state colleges. On the other hand, attending classes online could be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and reduce the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s imperative that you find out if the Georgia veterinary schools you are considering offer class times flexible enough to fit your schedule. For example, a number of students continue to work full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Others might only be able to go to classes in the morning or in the afternoon. Make sure that the class times you need are offered near Dahlonega GA prior to enrolling. Also, determine if you can make up classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family issues. You might discover that an online program is the best way to fit your vet training into your busy life.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Veterinary Technician?When preparing to interview for a veterinary position, it's advantageous to consider questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask veterinary candidates is "What drove you to select veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the private reasons you may have for being a vet assistant, but also what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating primarily to veterinary care, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to prepare several strategies about how you want to respond to them. Considering there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an excellent vet tech and the best choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Enroll in the Best Veterinary Assistant Training Program near Dahlonega GA
Choosing the right veterinary assistant or tech school is an important first step to beginning a gratifying career providing care and treatment for pets and livestock. Students thinking about veterinary assistant or tech schools must make their determination based on several key issues. Veterinary techs, assistants and technologists are employed in vet clinics, animal hospitals and animal shelters. They usually take on administrative responsibilities and support the veterinarian with the animal patients as needed. As we have discussed, it’s imperative that you select a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the field. This goes for vet tech online programs as well. By asking the questions provided in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to reduce your options so that you can make your final decision. And by picking the ideal program, you can achieve your goal of becoming a vet technician, assistant or technologist in Dahlonega GA.
A Little Bit About Dahlonega GA
In 1828 Dahlonega was the site of the first major gold rush in the United States. The Dahlonega Gold Museum Historic Site stands in the middle of the town square, housed in the 1836 Lumpkin County Courthouse. From its steps in 1849, Dahlonega Mint assayor Dr. M. F. Stephenson tried to persuade miners to stay in Dahlonega instead of joining the California Gold Rush, saying, "There's millions in it," famously misquoted as "There's gold in them thar hills."
Dahlonega was home to many Creek and Cherokee. There are a few Creek and Cherokee descendants in Dahlonega today, not in distinct communities but scattered throughout the area. Most of the descendants are Cherokee of mixed race. Names such as Corn, Davis, Chambers, Dover, Chattin, and Bird are associated with these lines of Cherokee blood. Surnames like Thrasher are of Creek blood. Though not afforded state or federal recognition, these families still hold onto who they are as Cherokee and Creek people. The Cherokee called the area ᏓᎶᏂᎨ or Da-lo-ni-ge, which means yellow (from the Dikaneisdi (Word List) of the Cherokee Language); George Featherstonhough, an English geologist who visited the town in 1837, observed that the courthouse, designed by Ephriam Clayton, was built upon a broad expanse of hornblende slate "and that the soil of the public square was impregnated with small specks of gold." The courthouse building was paid for in part with gold bullion, using bricks likely made in Lumpkin County (although possibly transported from Augusta), with both its foundation stone and timber obtained locally.
Numerous gold mines were illegally developed in the area. Miners, entering illegally into the Cherokee Nation lands, came into conflict with the Cherokee, whose territory they had trespassed. The Cherokee lands were defined by the treaty between the Federal Government and the Cherokee Nation in the Treaty of Washington 1819. The miners raised political pressure against the Cherokee because they wanted to get the gold. The Federal Government forced the Native Americans west of the Mississippi River to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears during Indian Removal. Dahlonega was founded two years before the Treaty of New Echota 1835, which made its founding a violation of the Treaty of Washington of 1819.
More Cities of Interest in Georgia