Veterinary Technician - AAS-T

Bellingham Technical College Veterinary Technician Program is nationally accredited through the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)
1931 North Meacham Road, Suite 100
Schaumburg, IL 60173-4360
800.248.2862
https://www.avma.org/

Turn your love of animals into a satisfying career! BTC’s Veterinary Technician program is ideal if you have an aptitude for math and science, and are interested in being a valuable part of the veterinary care team. You’ll work with animals and people, in a job that is different every day.

With BTC’s high quality education and hands-on training, you’ll gain the valuable skills needed now by veterinary hospitals, surgery centers, specialty care providers, zoos, and wildlife facilities.

Employment Information

85% BTC graduate placement rate

$33,592 starting annual wage
$37,253 average annual wage
$41,766 potential annual wage
  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    BTC graduate employment rates:
    The graduate employment rate reflects placement rates of students who graduated from BTC in 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17. The Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges Data Linking for Outcomes Assessment database pulls from Unemployment Insurance (UI) data across Washington and Oregon. UI data do not reflect BTC graduates who (a) are employed in states beyond those listed above or outside of the United States, (b) are self-employed, (c) are active duty members of the armed forces, (d) continued on to another educational institution, and/or (e) did not provide a social security number while enrolled at BTC.

    Wages:
    Washington State Employment Security Department 2018 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates ( esd.wa.gov) reflect 2014-2017 employment

    Starting annual wage = 25th percentile
    Average annual wage = 50th percentile
    Potential annual wage = 75th percentile

Estimated Program Costs

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

Students interested in the Veterinary Technician Program are encouraged to meet with the Program Navigator Laura Doss ldoss@btc.edu. The student navigator will help you plan a course of study. 

The program will be admitting new students in Fall Quarter 2021.

Program-ready students are invited to register for Veterinary Technician courses. Students who have completed ALL prerequisite requirements before the start of first quarter core courses will be allowed entry based on the order in which they register. 

There is no separate admission process or application for this program.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) v.6

Applicants must score at the "BASIC" level or higher in each of the four areas on one transcript. See the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills handout for more information about this entrance assessment.

Evidence of High School graduation or equivalent submitted to BTC Admissions Department.

Students must be 18 years or older before beginning program core courses.

Pre-Program Course Requirements

ALL COURSES MUST BE A MINIMUM OF 5 QUARTER CREDITS OR 3 SEMESTER CREDITS

Completion of the following courses with a minimum grade of 2.0 (C) or higher in each course:

  • English Composition 1 (ENGL& 101)
  • Math in Society (MATH& 107) or any MATH course from the AAS-T alternative course list will be accepted.
  • Interpersonal Communications (CMST& 210) or General Psychology (PSYC& 100)
  • General Biology with Lab (BIOL& 160)
  • Introduction to Chemistry (CHEM& 121) preferred, will accept other courses in the following fields: BIOL, CHEM, OCEA, ZOOL
  • Intro to Veterinary Technology (VETT 100)

ONLY for students who are transferring prior credits to BTC: Official transcripts documenting prerequisite course completion must be submitted and evaluated before registration.

Physical Requirements

AFTER admissions acceptance into the program and prior to beginning program classes students must submit proof of all Clinical Placement Requirements.

Veterinary Technician Informed Acknowledgment and Consent to Hazards and Risks

What are My Next Steps?

Classes

  • Quarter 1

  • VETT 101Veterinary Nursing I5 CR
  • VETT 102Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology I6 CR
  • VETT 103Veterinary Medical Terminology3 CR
  • VET 120Medical Dosages and Calculations4 CR
  • VETT 201Mentorship Lab I3 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • VETT 104Veterinary Nutrition I3 CR
  • VETT 105Learning for a Lifetime2 CR
  • VETT 106Microbiology, Virology, & Mycology3 CR
  • VETT 107Small Animal Parasitology4 CR
  • VETT 108Radiology I5 CR
  • VETT 202Mentorship Lab II3 CR
  • Quarter 3

  • VETT 109Clinical Laboratory Sciences5 CR
  • VETT 110Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology II3 CR
  • VETT 111Small Animal Medicine I3 CR
  • VETT 112Veterinary Nursing II (Surgical)5 CR
  • VETT 203Mentorship Lab III3 CR
  • Quarter 4

  • VETT 117Veterinary Nursing III (Large Animal)5 CR
  • VETT 118Small Animal Medicine II3 CR
  • VETT 119Advanced Clinical Lab Sciences4 CR
  • VETT 120Anesthesia5 CR
  • VETT 204Mentorship Lab IV3 CR
  • Quarter 5

  • VETT 113Immunology & Pharmacology I3 CR
  • VETT 114Dentistry4 CR
  • VETT 115Radiology II5 CR
  • VETT 116Large Animal Medicine3 CR
  • VETT 125Humanity of Veterinary Medicine3 CR
  • VETT 205Mentorship Lab V3 CR
  • Quarter 6

  • VETT 121Exotic Animal Medicine3 CR
  • VETT 122Veterinary Nutrition II2 CR
  • VETT 123Veterinary Nursing IV (Critical Care)5 CR
  • VETT 124Specialty Medicine3 CR
  • VETT 126Pharmacology II3 CR
  • VETT 206Mentorship Lab VI3 CR
  • Quarter 7

  • VETT 130Veterinary Clinical Work Experience12 CR

Program Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be prepared to:

  • Care for animals in a manner that is safe for both animals and humans;
  • Promote public health;
  • Accept the responsibilities of his/her profession, to provide compassionate, competent, ethical care in a professional, conscientious manner;
  • Pursue lifelong learning to advance his/her knowledge of veterinary care;
  • Take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE);
  • Take the state exam and fulfill requirements for licensure as a veterinary technician;
  • Understand normal anatomy, physiology and behavior of health for the species studied;
  • Understand and participate in the process of diagnosis, therapy and prevention of animal disease;
  • Understand the profession of veterinary technician including: occupational safety, public health, client and colleague communication, ethics of animal welfare, and the human-animal bond;
  • Provide critical thinking skills to reason through clinical situations and take appropriate action;
  • Provide social interactive skills to facilitate excellent communication with clients and colleagues;
  • Provide psychomotor skills to facilitate quality, efficient diagnostic and therapeutic interventions;
  • Provide learning skills and tools to promote learning throughout career and lifetime.

Employment Outlook

Job opportunities in this profession are expected to be excellent. About 85 percent of program graduates are employed within nine months of graduation. The average annual wage in this field is $37,253, with an earning potential of about $41,766 per year.*

Criminal convictions may restrict or prevent student participation with internships and employment in this industry.

Veterinary technicians typically conduct clinical work in a private practice under the supervision of a veterinarian, performing various medical tests in a laboratory setting along with treating medical conditions and diseases in animals.

They may work in research facilities, where they may administer medications orally or topically, prepare samples for laboratory examinations, and record information on an animal’s genealogy, diet, weight, medications, food intake, and clinical signs of pain and distress. They may also work with other scientists in medical-related fields such as gene therapy and cloning. Other opportunities exist in biomedical research, wildlife medicine, the military, livestock management, education, or pharmaceutical sales.

Faculty & Support

Photo of Laura Doss
Laura Doss
College Navigator

Laura Doss has been at BTC for 10 years in the roles of Academic & Career Advisor, Student Navigator, Instructor, Completion Coach and now College Navigator for the Allied Health Programs. Laura earned her Bachelor of Science while serving in the US Army and stationed in Germany and her Master of Education while stationed at Fort Sill, OK. Her initial education and training was in the mental health field before moving into education. Outside of work, Laura likes to spend time with her four kids, walking the trails, cuddling with her tiny dog and reading a ton of books!

Photo of Lisa Dzyban
Lisa Dzyban
Veterinary Technology

Dr. Dzyban is a veterinarian that is board certified in small animal internal medicine. She has fifteen years clinical experience in general and specialty small animal practice and four years experience as an instructor and specialist consultant. As a veterinary internist, she is adept in ultrasound, endoscopy, parenteral nutrition and chemotherapy techniques. Publications include "Peritoneal Dialysis" in Kirk's Current Veterinary Therapy, "Peritoneal Dialysis" in the Journal of Emergency & Critical Care, "Cardiac Tamponade in Cavia Porcellus" in the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association, and "Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis" in the Journal of Veterinary Radiologists. She is a recipient of the Sue Tidball Award for Creative Humanity and an instructor for the American Red Cross. One of her life goals is to inspire excellence in animal care in veterinarians, veterinary technicians and animal owners.

Photo of Madison Castrejon
Madison Castrejon
Veterinary Technician

Madison Castrejon started as Laboratory Technician for Bellingham Technical College’s Veterinary Technician Program in 2017. She had 5 years of experience in the veterinary industry as an LVT prior to becoming employed at BTC. Madison received her veterinary technician training at Bellingham Technical College, and became a licensed LVT in 2012. She worked for small animal practices in Whatcom County upon graduation. Madison served as a head tech of a local practice for the 4 years preceding her employment at BTC. Outside of work, Madison enjoys spending time outdoors in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, cooking, gardening, taking camping trips with her husband, and serving as “staff” to her multiple pets who run the household.