How to Select a Vet Tech College near Kailua Kona Hawaii
Fulfilling your lifelong aspiration of working with and helping animals by enrolling in a vet program near Kailua Kona HI might at first feel like an overwhelming task. After all, you have to locate and enroll in a school that will furnish the proper training so that you can succeed as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. But just how do you go about assessing and comparing programs so that you can make the correct choice? Many aspiring students begin their due diligence process by searching for schools that are close to their homes. After they have located some area schools, they determine which ones have the most affordable tuition and hone in on those. Although expense and location are important concerns when evaluating vet tech schools, they are by no means the only important ones when making your assessments. Factors such as internship programs and accreditation need to be considered also. The point is that there are questions you need to be asking the veterinary tech programs you are reviewing before you make an ultimate choice. We have furnished several in this article in order to help get you started, but before we review them we’ll go over the various responsibilities of vet assistants and techs and the training options offered.
The Role of a Vet Tech and Assistant
Among the initial decisions that you will need to make is if you wish to train as a vet assistant, technician or technologist. Part of your decision might be based on the amount of time and money that you have to commit to your training, but the primary determiner will most likely be which specialization appeals to you the most. What vet techs and assistants share in common is that they each work under the direct supervision of a licensed and practicing veterinarian. And even though there are a number of functions that they can perform within the Kailua Kona HI veterinary clinic or hospital, they can’t prescribe drugs, diagnose health issues, or conduct surgical procedures. In those areas they can only furnish support to a licensed vet. There are technicians and technologists that work outside of the standard veterinarian practice, such as for animal shelters, zoos or law enforcement. Let’s take a look at the responsibilities and training requirements for each specialization.
- Vet Assistants in the majority of cases will have undergone a formal training program, either as an intern or apprentice in a practice, or by graduating from a certificate program at a community college or trade school near Kailua Kona HI. As the name implies, their job function is to assist the vets and vet technicians in the execution of their duties. Usually they are not involved with more involved activities, for instance assisting with surgeries. A few of their regular responsibilities may include working at the front desk, preparing and cleaning exam rooms and equipment, or handling pets during exams.
- Vet Technicians receive more advanced training in contrast to assistants and generally acquire a 2 year Associate Degree, ideally from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited program. They are in a sense the veterinary equivalent of medical nurses, since their general job function is to assist vets with diagnosing and treating animal patients. Where they stand apart from vet assistants is that they are included in more complicated duties, such as assisting with surgeries or providing medication. All states presently mandate that vet techs pass a credentialing examination for either licensing, registration or certification.
- Vet Technologists are comparable to vet technicians and for the most part perform the same job functions. They are mandated to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in veterinary technology, which typically requires 4 years. So the only real distinction between a vet technician and a technologist is the technologist’s more advanced level of education. But with an advanced degree comes more job options, increased salaries and potential management positions. They are also mandated to pass a credentialing examination for either licensing, registration or certification.
Veterinary technicians and technologists may specialize in areas such as anesthesia, internal medicine or urgent care. Some may earn certification from the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) to work in labs or Kailua Kona HI area research facilities also.
Veterinarian Online Courses
An alternative that may be a solution for those with a hectic schedule or who are working full time while attending veterinarian college is to enroll in an online program. Since the classes are offered by means of the internet, students can study on their own timetable wherever a computer is accessible. The curriculum is taught using various venues, including slide shows, videos and live streaming webinars. And since most veterinary technician and technologist degrees require clinical training, that portion can typically be completed as an internship or work study program at an area Kailua Kona HI veterinary clinic or hospital. Distance learning, as it is also called, may in some instances reduce the cost of your education. Tuition and secondary expenditures, for example for commuting and study materials, may be cheaper compared to more standard classroom courses. Just be sure that the online school that you choose is accredited, either by the AVMA or another nationally certified accrediting organization. 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 or assistant program may be the perfect choice for you.
Questions to Ask Vet Assistant and Technologist Degree Programs
At this point you probably have selected which veterinary credential that you want to earn, and if you want to study online or attend a college on campus. Since there are a large number of vet community colleges, vocational and trade schools in Hawaii as well as across the USA, you should ask some important questions to help narrow down your list of options. As we discussed in our introduction, many future students start by focusing on location and tuition expense. But we have already mentioned other important qualifiers, for example accreditation and internship programs. And naturally you need to choose a school that offers the degree and specialty that you want to earn. These and other factors are reviewed in the checklist of questions that you should ask the Kailua Kona HI vet technician and assistant schools that you are reviewing.
Is the Veterinary School Accredited? It’s important that you make sure that the veterinary assistant or tech college you select is accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency. As previously stated, among the most highly respected is the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Trade schools and colleges that are accredited by the AVMA have undergone an extensive review process that verifies you will obtain a quality education. Also, accreditation is essential if you are applying for a student loan or financial assistance, since many programs are not available for non-accredited schools. And finally, having a degree or certificate from an accredited program is often a prerequisite for employment for a number of Kailua Kona HI veterinarian clinics and hospitals.
What is the College’s Reputation? The veterinarian trade school or college and program you select should have an outstanding reputation within the vet field. You can initiate your due diligence by asking the colleges you are looking at for references from the employers in their job assistance network. Other suggestions include checking with online school ranking websites and checking with the school’s accrediting organizations as well. You can ask the Hawaii school licensing department if there have been any grievances or violations involving your specific schools. As a final suggestion, phone some Kailua Kona HI veterinary clinics that you might wish to work for after you receive your training. Ask what they think about your school selections. They may even recommend some colleges not on your list.
Are there Internship Programs? The best way to get practical hands on training as a vet assistant or technician is to work in a professional environment. Find out if the schools you are looking at have internship programs set up with local veterinarians, vet hospitals or clinics. Most veterinary medicine programs mandate practical training and a large number provide it by way of internships. Not only will the experience be invaluable relative to the clinical training, but an internship can also help build connections in the local Kailua Kona HI veterinarian community and help in the search for employment after graduation.
Is there a Job Assistance Program? Getting a job after graduating from a veterinary tech or assistant program can be challenging without the help of a job placement program. First, ask what the graduation rates are for the schools you are reviewing. A lower rate may mean that the teachers were unqualified to teach the course of study or that a number of students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. Next, verify that the schools have a job placement program and ask what their placement rates are. A higher placement rate might signify that the Kailua Kona HI program has an exceptional reputation within the veterinarian community and has a considerable network of contacts for student placements. A low rate may mean that the training is not well regarded by employers or that the job placement program is a failure at placing students.
How Big are the Classes? If the classes are larger in size, you may receive little or no individualized instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Kailua Kona HI schools you are researching what their class teacher to student ratios are. You may also decide to participate in a few classes (if practical) to monitor the interaction between instructors and students. Ask for feedback from students relating to the quality of instruction. Also, speak with the teachers and determine what their backgrounds are as well as their approaches to teaching.
Where is the School Located? Okay, we previously talked about location, but there are a couple of more points to make on the subject. If you are planning to drive to your veterinary assistant classes from home or work, you must make sure that the commuting time fits into your schedule. For example, driving during the weekend to investigate the route won’t be the same as the drive during rush hour traffic, particularly if the Kailua Kona HI school is located near or in a large city. In addition, if you do opt to enroll in a school in another state or even outside of your County of residence, there may be higher tuition fees especially for community and state colleges. Of course taking online classes may be an alternative that will give you more flexibility and minimize the need for travel.
Do the Classes Fit Your Schedule? And last, it’s imperative that you determine if the Hawaii veterinary colleges you are exploring offer class times that are sufficiently flexible to accommodate your schedule. For instance, a number of students continue working full time and can only go to classes on the weekends or in the evenings. Some may only be able to attend class in the morning or in the afternoon. Make sure that the class times you require are available near Kailua Kona HI before enrolling. Also, determine if you can make-up classes that you may miss due to work, sickness or family issues. You may discover that an online school is the ideal way to fit your veterinary training into your busy life.
Why Did You Want to Become a Vet Assistant?When prepping to interview for a veterinary position, it's advantageous to consider questions you might be asked. One of the questions that interviewers frequently ask veterinary prospects is "What made you choose veterinary care as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not just the private reasons you might have for being a veterinary technician, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to veterinary care, as well as a certain number of typical interview questions, so you should prepare a number of approaches about how you want to answer them. Given that there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional vet tech and the ideal choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few ideas and topics that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
Choose the Best Vet Assistant Training Program near Kailua Kona HI
Choosing the appropriate vet technician college is a crucial first step to starting a rewarding career providing treatment and care for animals. Potential students thinking about vet assistant or tech programs need to make their decision based on multiple key factors. Veterinary techs, assistants and technologists are employed in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics and animal shelters. They typically take on administrative duties and support the veterinarian with the animal patients as needed. As we have covered, it’s imperative that you enroll in a veterinary medicine program that is both accredited and has an excellent reputation within the profession. This goes for vet tech online schools as well. By asking the questions included in our checklist for reviewing schools, you will be able to reduce your options so that you can make your final choice. And by selecting the best college, you can achieve your goal of becoming a veterinary assistant, technician or technologist in Kailua Kona HI.
A Little Bit About Kailua Kona HI
Kailua, Hawaii County, Hawaii
Kailua is a census-designated place (CDP) in Hawaiʻi County, Hawaii, United States, in the North Kona District of the Island of Hawaiʻi. The population was 11,975 at the 2010 census, up from 9,870 at the 2000 census. It is the center of commerce and of the tourist industry on West Hawaiʻi. Its post office is designated Kailua-Kona to differentiate it from Kailua located on the windward side of Oʻahu island, and it is sometimes referred to as Kona in everyday speech. The city is served by Kona International Airport, located just to the north in the adjacent Kalaoa CDP. Kailua-Kona was the closest major settlement to the epicenter of the 2006 Kiholo Bay earthquake.
The community was established by King Kamehameha I to be his seat of government when he was chief of Kona before he consolidated rule of the archipelago, and it later it became the capital of the newly unified Kingdom of Hawaiʻi. The capital later moved to Lāhainā, and then to Honolulu. Royal fishponds at Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park were the hub of unified Hawaiian culture. The town later functioned as a retreat of the Hawaiian royal family. Up until the late 1900s, Kailua-Kona was primarily a small fishing village.:58 In the late 20th and early 21st centuries the region has undergone a real estate and construction boom fueled by tourism and investment.
Kailua is located at 19°39′0″N 155°59′39″W / 19.65000°N 155.99417°W / 19.65000; -155.99417 (19.649973, −155.994028), along the shoreline of Kailua Bay and up the southern slope of Hualālai volcano. There are no major rivers or streams in Kailua or on the Kona side of Hawaii.:26
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