Many people love animals. There are relatively few, however, who decide to take their love of animals and transform it into a career caring for them. For those who do, veterinary medicine may be the career path for you. There are a variety of career opportunities available for veterinarians, and demand in this profession remains high. While there are other paths to take, it is recommended that you take a pre-veterinary undergraduate program prior to applying for veterinary school. Here are some things to consider:
Pre-Veterinary Programs Provide Great Preparation for Veterinary School.
While other degree programs may provide many of the classes that will be needed as a veterinarian, a pre-veterinary program is designed specifically for students who plan to become vets. By the time you finish the program, you’ll have a solid foundation in sciences such as biology, organic and inorganic chemistry, and physics. You’ll also complete classes such as English, calculus and business classes.
Veterinary school can be competitive.
According to the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, there are only 30 veterinary schools in the United States. Many of them require that you have completed a pre-veterinary program prior to applying for admission. Others may not require it, but considering the limited number of schools you can attend to become a veterinarian, getting a pre-veterinary program is highly recommended.
Choosing a school with pre-veterinary programs.
There are many schools with pre-veterinary programs. When researching and applying for schools, there are a variety of things to consider. On a personal level, you’ll want to consider the school’s location. You’ll want to research the school and be sure it is accredited. Accreditation provides assurance that your education will meet certain standards that will be acceptable to a veterinary school.
Remember, that what is most important in a pre-veterinary school is that it gets you into a veterinary program. You’ll want to examine the school’s success rate in moving students into vet school. It’s also important to have a school where career counselors are active in the program and work hard to help you accomplish your coals.
Research the in-campus facilities to be sure that there are facilities where you can get hands-on experience working with animals. It is important to understand the types of facilities available, particularly if you have not yet decided whether you wish to focus on working with pets or with farm animals or wildlife. Investigate the possibilities of internships nearby the college. If you have not decided your focus then it is important that there are a wide variety of places where you can serve your internship.
Your prospective pre-veterinary school should have a strong science program. Veterinary schools look for students with a strong background in biology, organic and inorganic chemistry and other sciences. As you can imagine, biology will be a key factor in your studies, including biology classes with lab elements.