With a projected 52 percent growth in employment throughout the U.S., the Bureau of Labor Statistics has listed a career as a veterinary technician as one of the top 10 fastest growing careers in the country.
If you love animals and enjoy working with your hands, then the challenging career of Veterinary Technology may be just right for you.
Designed to be a five-semester program that starts in the fall of each year, Piedmont Technical College’s AVMA-accredited veterinary technology program prepares graduates to sit for the Veterinary Technician National Examination to become fully licensed veterinary technicians.
Based in Newberry, SC, PTC’s program is the only one of its kind in the mid-state area of South Carolina, and one of only three programs of its kind statewide.
Veterinary technicians are important members of the veterinary health care team; they are educated in the care and handling of animals, the basic principles of normal and abnormal life processes, and in routine laboratory and clinical procedures. All veterinary technicians work under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian.
For more information about careers, visit Career Onestop for an overview of South Carolina and National earnings statistics, and Piedmont Technical College's Career Tracks page for more in-depth information about this program. For national career information, visit Virtual Career Network.
Because the Veterinary Technology curriculum is technical, hands-on skills are greatly emphasized in order to teach students the best practices in working with animals.
The program works with the local animal shelter in Newberry County to give the students as much experience with various dogs and cats as possible. Working with the shelter's animals allows students can see all the different breeds as well as behaviors that different animals experience. For the large animal medicine classes, students visit local farms to get hands-on experience with dairy cattle as well as horses and other common large animal species like goats and sheep.
After students graduate and get their licenses, they're qualified to work in many facets of veterinary medicine. Students are well-prepared to work in clinical small animal practices which focus on common pets like dogs and coats. But they’re also qualified to work in large animal practices, which focus on animals like horses and cattle, exotics and wildlife management, and in zoo animal medicine. Additionally, students can work in government-related careers, as USDA inspectors, in industry-related jobs in research, and in emergency and specialty medicine.
Veterinary Technology graduates are in high demand, and PTC's coordinators regularly get calls from veterinary practices all over the region asking about students who are scheduled to graduate soon.
Most graduates work in small animal private practice or specialty practice, but others work in research setting. Some recent graduates have found work at:
Chapin Veterinary Care Center
Pet Wellness Center
Melissa Waters has discovered that sometimes you need to follow your heart to discover your passion. She came to Piedmont Technical College for the radiologic technology program, but has found her calling with the veterinary technology program.
“I started out at Piedmont Tech in the radiology program, but I found the veterinary technology program was a better fit for me,” said Waters.
Waters was working as a dental assistant when she decided she wanted a change. She chose the radiologic technology program because of the earnings potential. She said she felt in her gut that it wasn’t what she was meant to do and fate stepped in to show her the way.Read More