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Best Veterinary Schools in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is an island territory of the United States that is home to over 3 million people. Its capital, San Juan, is home to over a million people.

Like most states in the United States, Puerto Rico has a thriving economy, with a diverse mix of agriculture, manufacturing, and service-based industries. That same economy also means that there are many animals on the island, both as pets and as livestock.

Because of that, the need for veterinarians in Puerto Rico is growing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in the veterinary medical profession are expected to grow 3% between 2020 and 2030, a rate that is faster than the average for all other occupations.

Like doctors, veterinarians are essential to the health and wellbeing of animals. They perform diagnostics, surgeries, and other procedures to help keep animals healthy.

Veterinarians also provide a vital service for pet owners on a budget, giving them access to critical medical care for their animals. While people can choose from thousands of schools to study medicine, there are only a limited number of veterinary schools.

This list details the best veterinary schools in Puerto Rico, ranked by their placement in the US News & World Report list of best veterinary schools.

Universidad Del Turabo

Established in 1963, the Universidad Del Turabo is one of the leading institutions of higher learning in Puerto Rico. A member of the Inter American University Network, Del Turabo has over 3,500 students in its 17 different bachelor's and graduate degree programs.

To further those goals, the school opened its Del Turabo Animal Hospital in 2015. A not-for-profit, charity-based hospital, the facility is staffed by over 50 veterinarians and support staff. It offers low-cost services to the community, with a particular focus on low-income pet owners.

Del Turabo also maintains strong ties to the local farming and agriculture industries. The school's Department of Animal and Food Sciences is home to several research programs, focused on food security and safety, animal production, and more.

Universidad Del Turabo is a leading veterinary school in the local and international scenes, committed to the study and practice of the field.

University of Puerto Rico - Arecibo

The University of Puerto Rico - Arecibo is the only school on this list that is a part of the Association of American Universities, an organization that comprises only 60 higher education institutions across the United States and Canada who excel in research and offer excellent graduate and professional education. The school also houses the Inter-American Network of Astronomy Satellite Facilities, giving UPR-Arecibo access to cutting-edge research equipment.

The veterinary program at UPR-Arecibo is divided into two branches, with one branch focusing on veterinary medicine and the other on veterinary sciences. The veterinary medicine branch offers a bachelor's degree in veterinary technology, a bachelor's degree in veterinary medicine, and a master's degree in veterinary medicine. The veterinary sciences branch offers a bachelor's degree in veterinary technology and a bachelor's degree in veterinary science.

All of these programs are geared toward preparing students for a career as a veterinarian. Students in the veterinary medicine branch also have the opportunity to perform externships at animal hospitals throughout the island, gaining hands-on experience working with animals and their human counterparts.

EDIC College

The Inter-American University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez (also known as the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez - EDIC College) is a branch of the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico located in the city of Mayagüez.

The Inter-American University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez is recognized as one of the best universities in the country. Among its notable alumni are former Puerto Rico Secretary of State, Kenneth McClintock, and former San Juan Mayoral candidate, Aníbal José Torres.

The EDIC College within the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez is home to one of the most respected veterinary medicine programs in the country. Since the program's inception in 1965, EDIC College has trained over 400 veterinarians who now work in hospitals, laboratories, and animal welfare organizations across the globe.

Students in the program spend their first year taking general education courses before moving on to more specific classes in the pre-veterinary track and the veterinary track. In the latter track, students learn the foundational sciences before spending their final year rotating in EDIC College's small animal hospital and clinic.

EDIC College is associated with the ASPCA and the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, which allows students to network with professionals from across the globe.

EDIC College's small animal hospital is one of the most advanced in the world, with the latest in diagnostic, treatment, and surgical equipment. The hospital treats over 15,000 animals each year, ranging from household pets to large animals.

Professional Electrical School

The Professional Electrical School of Puerto Rico is a non-profit, private educational institution that was founded in 1972. Since then, the school has trained more than 8,000 students in electrical and computer engineering.

PSPR is nationally accredited by the Accreditation Board for Electrical Contracting and the National Association of Trade Schools. It holds additional accreditation from the American Communications Foundation and the Universal Society of Professional Engineers.

Students in the electrical engineer program learn the fundamentals of electrical engineering, including the study of electrical machines, circuits, and materials. They also gain hands-on experience through an internship in the electrical industry.

Those pursuing a computer engineering degree gain an understanding of computer systems and how they can be applied to business, communications, and entertainment. Students study the latest trends in computer technology and gain hands-on experience through an internship or co-op.

Advantage Technical College

For students looking to pursue a veterinary medicine degree as part of a broader range of studies, Advantage Technical College has the perfect option.

The associate degree in animal science provides a solid foundation in the sciences needed for a career in veterinary medicine, while also giving students the opportunity to study specific topics in animal health and care.

Through the associate degree, students can then go on to gain advanced training in the veterinary profession through several different pathways.

Advantage Technical College is part of the Puerto Rico Department of Education's University Center system, which means that it is officially designated as a two-year college.

That means that students who complete an Advantage Technical College associate degree are free to transfer directly into the first year of any University of Puerto Rico (the island's public university system) bachelor's degree program, thanks to an agreement between the systems.

This agreement means that Advantage Technical College students are following in the footsteps of some of the most respected figures in the Puerto Rican veterinary profession, such as Dr. Rafael Nieves Falero, a well-known veterinarian and professor at the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine in Rio Piedras.

University of Puerto Rico - Medical Sciences

The University of Puerto Rico, School of Medical Sciences is the largest and most prestigious school of the university. It was founded in 1963 with the intention of training the best doctors for the country. Since then, over 3,000 medical professionals have graduated from the school, practicing in all corners of the world.

The School of Medical Sciences offers three degrees in the health sciences - biology, human medicine, and post-baccalaureate pre-medical. The human medicine program is the most highly regarded, with an acceptance rate of only 3%.

During their first year at UPR-Medical Sciences, students receive a solid foundation in the sciences, including biochemistry, general and cellular biology, anatomy, and physiology. Students also gain hands-on experience in basic clinical skills, working in the hospital and clinic alongside practicing doctors.

During their second and third years, students focus on advanced study in the subjects they learned in their first year. They gain more hands-on experience, working with more advanced medical equipment and techniques. At the end of their third year, students take the USMLE, the official medical licensing examination of the National Board of Medical Examiners.

Centro de Estudios Multidisciplinarios - San Juan

The Centro de Estudios Multidisciplinarios is a private college that was founded in 1979 by a group of professors and health care professionals. It is recognized by the Puerto Rico Department of Education as an educational institution of higher education and as a center of scientific and technical excellence.

The school has two primary programs: the doctor of veterinary medicine and the bachelor of science in veterinary technology. The DVM program requires four years of study and includes courses in animal biology, pathology, immunology, medicine, and other sciences related to animal care. Students also gain practical experience working in the school's veterinary hospital and intensive care unit.

The veterinary technology program focuses on teaching the fundamentals of veterinary medicine while also giving students experience working in veterinary hospitals. Students in this program complete a three-year bachelor's degree that includes 60 credits in the veterinary technology field.

PPG Technical College

For decades, the Polytechnic Institute of Puerto Rico has been a leader in veterinary education, training hundreds of veterinarians over the years. The PPG Technical College is the veterinary branch of the Polytechnic Institute of Puerto Rico.

The PPG Technical College offers a wide range of degrees in the health sciences, including a couple of options in veterinary medicine.

Through the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, students can pursue a two-year associate degree in veterinary technology. Alternatively, students can complete a four-year bachelor's degree in animal sciences, which includes a concentration in veterinary medicine.

Through the School of Veterinary Medicine, students can pursue a four-year doctor of veterinary medicine degree. The School of Veterinary Medicine also offers a dual degree program in which students earn both a doctor of veterinary medicine and a master's degree in business administration.

All of the programs share several key attributes, including a focus on teaching by practicing veterinarians and a commitment to community service.

Centro de Estudios Multidisciplinarios - Bayamon

The Centro de Estudios Multidisciplinarios in Bayamon is the only veterinary school in Puerto Rico. It was founded in 1963 and has an enrollment of 514 students.

The school follows a multidisciplinary approach to education, with programs in the areas of animal production and technology, food technology, and veterinary medicine.

Students gain real-world experience through the school's affiliations with the following institutions: the Central Veterinary Institute, the Center for Food Technology, and the Veterinary Hospital of the University.

Centro de Estudios Multidisciplinarios has an extensive research program, with several research centers and programs dedicated to advancing veterinary medicine.

The school is affiliated with the American Association of Veterinary Medicine Colleges, as well as the Association of Veterinary Medicine Faculties of Central America and the Caribbean.

CEM College-Mayaguez

CEM is a private college with two campuses in Puerto Rico. Its Mayaguez campus is the smaller of the two, with an enrollment of around 1,300 students. However, it is the only veterinary school in Puerto Rico, making it the choice for those who want a rigorous, science-based education.

CEM offers four degree programs in veterinary sciences, including an associate's degree in veterinary technology. Students can also earn a bachelor's degree in veterinary medicine or a master's degree in animal sciences.

The veterinary sciences department is comprised of many faculty members with impressive credentials, including Dr. Jaime Serra. A native of Spain, Dr. Serra has spent over 20 years working in the field, first as a general practitioner and now as a research scientist.

Prospective students will also want to know that CEM has established partnerships with several organizations, including the Puerto Rico Animal Health Commission and the USDA/APHIS/ADG/VS. This allows students to gain experience working with animals as part of their degree program, thanks to the assistance of these organizations.

Eugen

Eugen

About the author
Got kids about to go to college, so making my own research and sharing here!
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