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Top Veterinary Schools in Massachusetts

When it comes to finding a career in which you can make a real difference, few options are better than becoming a veterinarian.

Like doctors, veterinarians help people take care of their bodies. But they also help people take care of their pets, which is a significant part of many people’s lives.

Because of this, veterinarians are in demand all over the world. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs for veterinarians is expected to grow by 4% between 2020 and 2030, adding about 1,300 jobs over that time.

And the best place to become a veterinarian? Massachusetts, of course.

The state offers several top-notch veterinary schools and many opportunities to gain hands-on experience working with animals.

In this guide, we’ll break down the best veterinary schools in the state and some of the opportunities they offer.

Here are the top veterinary schools in Massachusetts.

University of Massachusetts Amherst

At the University of Massachusetts Amherst, students in the veterinary bioscience master's program learn from faculty who are active researchers. In the program, faculty members bring their research and its implications for animal and human health, as well as their diagnostic and treatment methods, into the classroom.

The university's Amherst campus sits near the center of the state, equidistant from the Atlantic Ocean and the Appalachian Mountains. Its rural location makes it an ideal setting for field-based research. In addition to its proximity to livestock, crops, and pet animals, the area features protected forests and watersheds that animal health experts study.

Throughout the school, faculty members are on the forefront of animal health research. In the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, faculty members study the effects of antibiotics and biofilms on animal health. They also look at how erythropoietin, a hormone that regulates the production of red blood cells, affects animal health.

Faculty in the Department of Plant, Soil, and Insect Sciences study the effects of biodiversity on animal health. In their research, they look at how increasing biodiversity affects crop, livestock, and pet animal health. They also study how changing biodiversity affects the health of soil organisms.

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences

As the only veterinary school in the country to also offer a pharmacy degree, the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is unique. But don't let that fool you. MCPS has been around since 1854, when it first started offering degrees in animal and pharmaceutical sciences.

Today, MCPS has the second largest number of international students of any college in the state, as well as the second largest number of minority students. These numbers show that MCPS is committed to bringing the best and the brightest to its program.

The school maintains this focus by offering a unique dual degree program. Students can earn both a bachelor's and a doctorate in animal sciences in just five years. Rather than diluting the experience of either program, MCPS uses the doctorate to expand on the knowledge gained in the bachelor's.

Students in the doctorate program study for five years, receiving a full-time salary, and then enter a two-year post-doctoral fellowship. During this time, they receive a salary as well as institutional support.

Bristol Community College

Bristol Community College has a veterinary technician program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

To gain admission to the program, students must have completed at least one year of high school and have at least a C average in core subjects.

Students in the program take a variety of classes, including basic sciences, animal care and management, and veterinary technology. They also gain hands-on experience working with animals in the college's veterinary technology laboratory.

After completing the program, students receive an associate in applied science degree and are eligible to take the National Examining Board's veterinary technician national certification exam.

Bristol Community College also offers several other associate degrees that can help students prepare for a career as a veterinarian. These include associate degrees in animal biology, animal health technology, and veterinary technology advanced practice.

Massasoit Community College

The School of Veterinary Technology and Animal Sciences at Massasoit Community College offers a variety of programs for those looking to enter the field.

The two-year associate degree in veterinary technology offers a pathway to further your education and advance your career. The program includes more than 1,100 hours of hands-on experience and 32 hours of classroom instruction.

You'll gain knowledge in animal health, disease, surgery, and radiology. You'll also learn how to perform a physical examination and take diagnostic images of your patients using ultrasound, radiology, and electrocardiography.

Through the associate degree in animal sciences, you can gain the knowledge and experience needed to pursue a career in animal care. You'll earn a two-year associate of science degree or a one-year certificate. You can also transfer credits earned in the program toward a variety of bachelor's degrees at Massachusetts state colleges.

The associate degree in animal care technician offers a different mix of courses, giving students the opportunity to choose a more specialized curriculum. You'll learn about anatomy, physiology, animal nutrition, and animal care. You'll also gain hands-on experience working with animals and go on field trips to animal care facilities.

North Shore Community College

Veterinary technician training is a non-degree program offered at several community colleges across the country. But don't let that fool you into thinking that North Shore Community College's program isn't valuable. On the contrary, NSCC's veterinary technician program has been named as one of the Top 10 Community College Programs in the Country by the Huffington Post.

That's thanks in large part to the quality of instruction that students receive. The program is taught by two fully licensed veterinary technicians, ensuring that students receive hands-on training from experts in the field. Additionally, students have the opportunity to work with four licensed veterinarians as well, gaining an edge in the industry by working alongside experts before transitioning into a professional role.

The program curriculum revolves around three core areas: animal health and wellness, animal anatomy and physiology, and veterinary technology. In these courses, students learn the basics of animal care and receive instruction in animal health and disease recognition, including how to identify symptoms and when to refer an animal to a veterinarian. Additionally, students study the different systems of animals, including horses, cattle, swine, dairy, birds, reptiles, and small and large mammals.

Thanks to NSCC's partnership with the University of Massachusetts Amherst, students in the community college's Veterinary Technology program also have the opportunity to take courses through the UMass Extended Learning Program. This gives students the chance to earn college credit, as well as a certificate of completion from NSCC, in a total of 16 different courses, covering everything from animal anatomy and physiology to veterinary technology.

With a curriculum like this, it's no wonder that NSCC's Veterinary Technology program has been recognized as one of the best in the country. Whether a student is looking to transition into a career as a veterinarian or a veterinary technician, this program provides the knowledge and experience that is essential to success in the field.

Holyoke Community College

If you want to pursue a veterinary technician program in Massachusetts, you'll have your choice of two schools: Holyoke Community College and Bristol Community College.

But HCC has some key advantages, not the least of which is the fact that it offers its vet tech program as a noncredit class. That means that anyone who is already in the process of getting their associate degree can take the required courses right away, rather than having to wait until they're ready to start their degree.

That's an important consideration, since most veterinary technician programs require at least a year of general education before students are ready to start the animal health track.

HCC also has the advantage of being the only Massachusetts school on the list of the top 100 schools for veterinary technology nationally.

That recognition reflects the school's strengths, which include a dedicated, experienced faculty and an inclusive community that supports students and instructors alike.

HCC's program is designed to prepare students to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE), administered by the National Board of Veterinary Examiners.

Students who successfully complete the program and the required examinations earn the title Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT).

HCC also offers a variety of extracurricular activities to help students gain real-world experience, including a volunteer program and an annual veterinary technology show.

Mount Wachusett Community College

Veterinary technician training is an important part of preparing future veterinarians. While most veterinary students attend four-year colleges or universities, some instead choose to get their education at community colleges.

At Mount Wachusett Community College in Gardner, Massachusetts, students can choose to pursue a veterinary technician associate's degree. The program requires students to complete 64 credits, including all the general education and science courses and the 27-credit veterinary technician training.

Mount Wachusett's program follows the guidelines set by the American Veterinary Medical Association, which means that graduates receive the same certification as those from traditional colleges.

In addition to the one-year associate's degree, Mount Wachusett also offers a 14-month certificate program. This option is better suited for people who already have some experience working with animals, as it prioritizes those with vet tech experience. The certificate program still requires students to complete the same number of general education and science courses, but they get half as many credits of veterinary technician training.

Regardless of which option they choose, all students in the program study under the guidance of instructor Anthony Bellino, a 27-year veteran of the veterinary field who also works as a private practitioner.

Ross Medical Education Center - Erlanger

Located on the campus of the Erlanger Health System in Chattanooga, Tennessee, the Ross Medical Education Center is part of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. The School of Medicine has been training veterinarians since 1883, making it one of the oldest institutions of its kind.

As part of the Erlanger Health System, the Ross Medical Education Center has access to cutting-edge technology and the latest research. The Center is home to the Erlanger Medical Library, which houses over 35,000 volumes in print and digital formats. The collection focuses on the medical and biomedical sciences and is ideal for use by students, faculty, and other researchers.

Students at the Ross Medical Education Center pursue a dual degree program in which they earn both a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Sciences and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degrees in five years. The curriculum emphasizes clinical knowledge and competence, with courses in small animal medicine and surgery, food animal medicine and surgery, equine medicine and surgery, and large animal internal medicine and surgery.

Students also gain experience through multiple rotations in small and large animal hospitals, as well as with specialty practices, such as emergency and critical care, small animal ambulatory, equine ambulatory, and wildlife hospitals.

Eugen

Eugen

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