If you have a passion for animals and want to spend your professional hours working towards maintaining and restoring their health, then becoming a veterinarian is probably your dream career! Veterinarians work with multiple species of animals, providing medical care by examining, diagnosing, and treating them. They educate the owners on how to best look after their animals, prescribing medications, perform simple procedures (like dental cleanings) as well as complex procedures (like surgeries), handle euthanasia, etc. Veterinarians can be found in clinics, zoos, farms, laboratories, and ranches. They may also take on teaching or research roles. As a veterinarian, you may work with all types of animals or specialize in a particular species. You might also choose to specialize in a sub-branch like dermatology, immunology, poultry medicine, livestock, etc.
Aspiring veterinarians will need to complete an undergraduate program after high school, preferably either in biology or science. The next step is a doctoral degree in veterinary medicine. Veterinary school typically lasts for a period of four years. Coursework includes physiology, anatomy, genetics, immunology, virology, pathology, toxicology, nutrition, ethics, and clinical skills. Final year students are given the opportunity to gain valuable practical experience through clinical hours treating various types of animals. After high school, it takes a total of about eight years to become a fully qualified veterinarian. If a student opts for accelerated programs, the process may be completed in as little in 6-7 years, while if a student wishes to specialize, it may take up to 12 years. The US has a number of schools that offer degrees in veterinary medicine, including Cornell University, Ohio State University – Main Campus, Texas A & M University, University of Pennsylvania, and University of California – Davis. After graduating, you must obtain a national license to practice professionally.
For some veterinary medicine aspirants, it may be difficult to complete a traditional, on-campus degree. Campus education can prove to be extremely expensive and time consuming. Fortunately, in such situations, you have the option of studying online. Depending on the program, you may study completely or partly online. There are many distance education programs in veterinary studies that are accredited by the AVMA Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities. These include programs from Cedar Valley College, Purdue University, Penn Foster College, Colby Community College, and Jefferson State Community College. Students who are residents of the state of Virginia have the options of completing their degree program from Blue Ridge Community College. A bachelor’s degree in veterinary technology, which blends online and campus classes, can prepare students for a career as a veterinary technologist. Finding a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree online is extremely rare because the qualification calls for lab and clinical experience. However, a few dual DVM/master’s degree programs, which combine veterinary training with a master’s degree in food safety or public health, do comprise internet courses, internships, and clinical experience.
If you choose to study veterinary medicine in a traditional campus context, the process can prove extremely expensive. Many students do not want to graduate from college saddled with high debt. Fortunately, there are a number of scholarships available for students who want to study veterinary medicine. Scholarships and grants are offered by the American Kennel Club, Humane Education Network, Race for Education Foundation, United States Health Resources and Services Administration, and American Veterinary Medical Association.
Best Schools And Scholarships For Veterinary Education Credit Picture License: MEDFLAG 11, Ghana, July 2011 via photopin cc