Archive for November, 2011

How to Become a Vet Tech

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011
Wondering how to become a vet tech? Not sure what sort of schooling you’ll need to earn a certification as a veterinary technician? Fortunately, for many people that want to learn how to become a vet tech, there are plenty of schooling options, usually at vocational schools, community colleges or technical schools. Knowing a little bit about how to become a vet tech, the training required, and what duties a vet tech may perform on the job can help decide if it’s the right career choice for you.
Schooling Required To Become a Vet Tech:
Most vet technicians typically have between 6 months and 2 years of training in a specialized vet tech program to earn their certificate or Associate’s Degree. Most cities and regions offer training through a local technical school.

It can be to your benefit to check with local technical school to see if they offer a vet tech program. These technical schools can also help with information on student loans, grants and scholarships that may be available for qualifying students.

Duties of a Veterinary Technician:
Finding the information on how to become a vet tech and where the training is located is just the first step in the process; it’s also highly recommended that you begin researching the job duties and skill requirements for a veterinary technician. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

“Veterinary technologists and technicians often perform various medical tests and treat medical conditions and diseases in animals. For example, they may perform laboratory tests such as urinalysis and blood counts, assist with dental care, prepare tissue samples, take blood samples, and assist veterinarians in a variety of other diagnostic tests.”

Also, check out our other articles: How Much do Vet Techs Make and What is the Difference Between a Vet Tech and a Vet Assistant.

If you are ready to pursue a career as a vet tech, or want to know more information, search for vet tech schools in your area.

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How much do vet techs make?

Friday, November 18th, 2011
Do you love animals? Have you always pictured yourself working closely with animals as a career? Veterinary technicians get to work side-by-side with their favorite animals without having to undergo the extensive training that a veterinarian does. Vet techs are comparable to nurses – both job positions provide aid and assistance to the medically and scientifically trained veterinarians and doctors. Vet techs take on responsibilities that range from vaccinating dogs to cleaning cages. Are you wondering how much vet techs make? Discover the median vet tech salary to determine if this is a good career choice for you. how-much-do-vet-techs-makeIf you love animals and are interested in a career as a veterinary technician, you may be wondering how much vet techs make. The vet tech salary, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is as follows:
“Median annual wages of veterinary technologists and technicians were $28,900 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $23,580 and $34,960. The bottom 10 percent earned less than $19,770, and the top 10 percent earned more than $41,490.”
In order to get to the point of being a professional vet tech, though, it’s important to have completed a veterinary tech program after graduating high school.Being a vet tech is no easy job – people who go into this profession must be extremely comfortable around all types of animals and have to be willing to sometimes get kicked, bitten or scratched by an animal. However, the payoffs generally outweigh the drawbacks. Aside from just the vet tech salary, vet techs take pride in their jobs by knowing that they’ve helped out both animals and pet owners. Also, vet techs may decide to become veterinarians in the future once they receive additional training and education. If a vet tech wants to continue on to veterinary school, they’ll have a great backing of experience and education from their time spent as a vet tech.

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Top Four Medical Careers in 2011

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011
Looking to go back to school for a stable career with a variety of education options? Did you ever consider health care? If so, keep reading to learn information about growing careers in health care; in spite of the difficult times the nation is facing.Top Four Medical Careers in 2011:

1) Registered Nurses:
Why is this Career Growing: Well, to be simply put, with populations growing and people living longer, the need for nurses increase as well.

What it Pays (on average) and What you Need in Order to be Hired: RNs have an average annual salary of $66,730, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. * (as per all statistics reported)

2) Physical Therapists:
Why is this Career Growing: According to, “Physical therapy is a multifaceted and caring profession offering many prospects in the future”. This remains true as people are living longer and becoming more active as they are living longer. People want to maintain the bodies that they were used to when they were younger, as much as possible.What it Pays (on average) and What you Need in Order to be Hired: You will need to have a degree in Physical Therapy, and it seems the higher the degree the better it will be in the long run, and you will also need to be certified. Salaries typically range from $50,350 to $104,350 with the median salary at 72,790, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

3) Chiropractors:
Why is this Career Growing: Similar to the reasons listed for being a Physical Therapist.

What it Pays (on average) and What you Need in Order to be Hired: Check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics for salary ranges.

4) Physician Assistants:
Job growth projections:  This field will show a growth in jobs created from 2008-2018, as reported by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

*Average annual salaries as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, in May 2009, November 2009 and November 2011.

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What is the difference between a vet tech and a vet assistant?

Monday, November 14th, 2011
In the world of veterinary medicine, few roles are as important as the veterinarian technician, or vet tech. While there are other key players in a veterinary hospital or clinic, the vet tech and the veterinarian are typically the ones most directly responsible for administering and monitoring pet health. If you are interested in a career in veterinary medicine and are not certain what the difference between vet tech and vet assistant is, this article is for you. If you already know you want to become a vet tech, search for vet tech schools near you today!

Amount of Education

The elemental difference between vet tech and vet assistant is the amount of veterinary-specific schooling a vet tech has under his or her belt. Veterinary technicians are graduates of a two-year program, typically accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), and in many instances, have an additional license or credential administered to them by the state in which they live. Veterinary assistants, on the other hand, are not required to have a degree or certification. Most vet assistants receive their training on the job by learning under the veterinarian or vet tech.


Veterinary tecnician BLS data:
 Veterinary assistant BLS data:

Job Tasks

Job requirements and duties also signify the difference between vet tech and vet assistant. Vet techs, since they have gone through medical training, have the larger responsibility of administering medicine, analyzing lab results, assisting with surgeries, performing anesthesia and taking x-rays.

Vet assistants usually perform non medical procedures such as administrative work, scheduling appointments, holding an animal in an examination room, sterilizing and prepping the surgical areas, tending to animals’ food, water and bathroom needs, and some light medicinal tasks such as applying topical medication or dressing and cleaning a wound.


Another difference between vet tech and vet assistant is the salary. On average, veterinary technicians make around three to four more dollars per hour than vet assistants. The future job market for a vet tech is also a bit brighter as there is an increasing need for qualified vet technicians, as well as a higher incidence of raises in pay and job advancement for a vet tech.


Either way, if you love animals and want to work in the veterinary field, both jobs hold high appeal. The question as to whether a job as a vet tech or a vet assistant is right for you is something you can answer depending on what type of work you want to do and how long you want to stay in the field.

If you’d like more information on becoming a vet tech, check out vet tech schools in your area.

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Q & A with a Technical School Graduate

Saturday, November 12th, 2011

Q: Where did you go to technical school and what did you study?
A: I joined the Indiana-Kentucky Regional Council of Carpenters as a first year apprentice. The training program was located in Indianapolis, Indiana, where I participated in classroom studies that were combined with related hands-on activities that I performed in the same facility. In the beginning, the course work included industry safety standards, CPR certifications, and construction math lessons. Throughout the apprenticeship program, the coursework become more specialized to prepare me to meet the demands that were expected of me while I was working. 

Q: Why did you choose to go to a technical school? And why did you choose that particular trade?
A: After graduating from high school, it was necessary for me to begin earning money. I spent seven years working as an unskilled laborer until I discovered that I could get an education while being employed. The work that I had been performing was related to carpentry, so the Carpenter’s Apprenticeship Program was a suitable option. As it turned out, my entry level pay-scale as an apprentice exceeded what I was able to earn on my own. This program also provided me with health insurance benefits paid for by the contractors that I was working for. The trade school opportunity allowed me to work, earn, and learn at the same time. 

Q: Tell us about your experience during your time at school – the program, the instructors, the training.
A: The learning process became something that I would look forward to each session. The program was demanding, but it was also enjoyable. It provided me with useful training that I could immediately put into practice on the job. Every instructor had been through the same process, and they understood what my classmates and I were going through. The group that I began the program with would later become the group that I would graduate with. Throughout that time, I made several friends that I still work with and others that I keep in touch with outside of work. This close network of friends has always been the first place I would go after a project ended, and I needed to find another job. In construction, every day at work is a day closer to the end of the job. The connections I now have from the training program are invaluable to me. 

Q: Where do you see technical schools fitting into the future of American education?
A: Technical and trade schools provide many important functions in American education. I was able to learn in the same community where I would be working, and this meant that my training directly related to the work I have been asked to perform. With the changing nature of the American economy, this relevant experience is important for maintaining a qualified, skilled workforce that can meet new industry standards and demands. The recession has made it clear to me that education is the best way to avoid the unemployment line. I have heard several news reports that say that many of the jobs that were lost in the recession will not return. Technical and trade schools are able to train workers to perform jobs and find employment working in the industries that remain as well as the new industries being created. 

Q: What advice do you have for people who are considering a technical school education?
A: I have and continue to recommend technical and trade schools to people who are looking for stable employment options that pay well. The education and skills acquired in these types of programs are specialized for the work that is available. The training provides people with an advantage over the competition, and the network of industry insiders is invaluable to obtaining and maintaining stable employment. In many situations, this type of education will outperform what a person can achieve with a university degree. A university education is expensive, time consuming, and does not offer the practical skills required to immediately enter the workforce and start earning a decent living. I tell people to find an industry they will enjoy and join a program that will make it happen.

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