Veterinary Technology

Program Level: Degrees, Certificates
Department: Veterinary Technology
Institute: Health & Biosciences
College: PAC

What is a licensed veterinary technician?

 

A veterinary technician is an integral part of the veterinary hospital staff, which is composed of individuals who are dedicated to ensuring high quality medical care for animals. Palo Alto College's program began offering classes in 1996 with its first cohort of graduates completing the program in 1998. 

Students pursuing a degree in animal care will receive formal training from an established, fully-accredited American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Veterinary Technology program and will gain the skills necessary to become a veterinary technician. Students will learn 350 essential skills in our 15,000 square-foot state-of-the-art facility. After successful completion of the program, students are eligible to sit for the national and state credentialing exams. 

If you are interested in science, research in public health, as well as helping animals, Veterinary Technology is the career for you. Personal attributes that contribute to a successful career as a veterinary technician include:

  • A strong science background and good basic math skills
  • Ability to work well with people and animals
  • Good communication and decision-making skills
  • Dedication and work ethic
  • Time management skills and self-initiative
  • Willing to work in a high stress environment
  • Self-starter
  • Organized 
  • Compassionate 

 

Veterinary Technology Program Highlights

  • Fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association
  • Over 20 years of success with 320+ graduates
  • Dedicated 15,000 square-foot facility at Palo Alto College
  • Hands-on experience in the Clinical Pathology lab, Anatomy/Physiology lab, Parasitology lab, Clinical Management, large animal facilities, surgery prep room, surgery suite, and recovery room
  • All courses taught by Licensed Veterinary Technicians and Licensed Veterinarians 
  • Two program tutors on staff
  • Recognized as the only program in Texas to be named to the Top 50 Veterinary Technician Programs for 2018 by TheBestColleges.org
  • High Licensed Veterinary Technician credentialing rates
  • On-site advisor and recruiters
  • Average program cost of $12,000 (including in-district tuition, supplies, and books)

Veterinary Technology Career Areas & Employment Positions

The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics States that employment of veterinary technicians is projected to grow 19% from 2014-2024. Career opportunities include:

  • Companion Animal Veterinary Technician
  • Laboratory Animal Technician—research and development
  • Large Animal Technician—equine or food animal
  • Military or Government Veterinary
  • Animal Technician
  • Veterinary Technician in a zoo or aquarium facility
  • Pharmaceutical sales
  • Wildlife rehabilitation
  • Teaching
  • Specialty or Referral practice
Degrees and Certificates Offered

The Palo Alto Veterinary Technology Program received initial accreditation in 1998 and has maintain full accredited from the American Veterinary Medical Association Committee on Veterinary Education and Activities.

 

Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) Pass Rate

Total* July 1, 2017 – June 30, 2020

43

Number first-time candidates that have taken the VTNE

88%

VTNE pass rate annual percentage

    *Three-year pass percentage
Admission Requirements for New Students

New applicants are required to submit their completed application packet, with all supporting documents. Application packets are accepted January 1 – June 1 for the upcoming fall semester. The completed application packet deadline is June 1 by 5:00 p.m. and are to be submitted via email only to lgarcia539@alamo.edu

Incomplete applications, as reflected by missing items from the checklist, will not be considered for acceptance into the program unless completed application packet is submitted by the deadline.

Steps to Apply

  1. Apply to Palo Alto College:
    1. Apply to Palo Alto College at www.applytexas.org
    2. Declare the specific major of “Veterinary Technology” under the AAS option.
    3. Welcome Center at 210-486-3100 if you have any questions
  2. Submit official transcript from all, non-Alamo Colleges District, institutions to Records and Transcripts office:
    1. All courses taken at alternate colleges or universities must be submitted via official transcripts.
    2. The applicant is responsible for acquiring/submitting official transcripts.
    3. Records and Transcripts at 210-486-3700 if you have any questions
  3. Complete required prerequisites:
    1. Composition I- ENGL 1301, and Biology for Science Majors l- BIOL 1406, College Algebra-Math 1314, General Psychology-PSYC 2301. NOTE: (Humanities can be taken if schedule allows, required prior to graduating)
    2. All must be completed with a “C” or better, for admission into the program.
    3. As of fall 2021 only BIOL 1406 will be accepted.
  4. Submit unofficial transcript from all, non-Alamo College District, institution(s) to the Veterinary Technology Program:
    1. Previous courses taken at any college/university must be turned into the Veterinary Technology Program.
    2. This transcript does not need to be an official copy; these can be printed from your on-line student account.
  5. Submit Work Time Sheet & “Proof of Clinical Experience” form:
    1. A minimum of 80 hours of documented clinical experience is required to apply to the program.
    2. All submitted hours must be acquired within 12 months of the application due date.
    3. The hours must be completed under the supervision of a D.V.M. or L.V.T. only
    4. Shelter hours are acceptable as long as the hours are obtained in the clinic area and with a D.V.M. supervisor
      1. Acceptable proof of clinical hours includes BOTH:
        1. Timesheet: Submit either the time sheet included in the downloadable application packet or a computer printed time sheet from your clinic only. If any other form is submitted it will not be accepted. Must include the total number of hours worked and the D.V.M. signature only.
        2. “Proof of Clinical Experience” form: A D.V.M. or L.V.T. must sign the form included in the downloadable application packet only.
  6. Have D.V.M./L.V.T. submit a Request for Reference form:
    1. Each applicant is responsible for procuring a signed “Request for Reference” form included in the downloadable application packet. This form must be completed by a D.V.M. or L.V.T. only from the clinic where the hours were completed.
    2. Once the form is complete:
      1. The D.V.M. or L.V.T. must submit the completed form via their work email address only to lgarcia539@alamo.edu
      2. If this is received from the applicants’ or any email other than the D.V.M. or L.V.T email address, the form will not be accepted.
  7. Submit completed application packet (PDF) to Palo Alto Veterinary Technology Program:
    1. Submit “Veterinary Technology Program Application” form included in the downloadable application packet along with all other documents to be considered for admission to the program.
    2. Every applicant applying must be a student in good standing and have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 to be considered for admission.
      • Exception: applicants who hold any college degree may have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0. to apply.
    3. Cumulative GPA will be in affect Fall 2021
    4. Applying to PAC and declaring your major as “Veterinary Technology” does not automatically submit your application to this program.
  8. Submit Essential Functions/Technical Standards form:
    1. Read and acknowledge by signing the Essential Functions/Technical Standards form in the downloadable application packet.
Applicant Selection Process for New Students

After meeting all requirements for Palo Alto College & the Veterinary Technology Program, selection of candidates will occur based on the applicants’ level of college education, total GPA from all institutions, number of clinical experience hours earned, and the D.V.M./L.V.T. reference form.

Applicant Status:

Following the selection process, applicants are ranked accordingly. Each applicant will be classified in one of the following four statuses: 

Accepted: The 50 highest ranked applicants who have met all application requirements.

Alternate: A select number of completed applicants that did not ranked in the top 50 accepted but will be invited to attend orientation.

Pending Alternate: Any remaining completed applicants not chosen for orientation or still lacking/pending application requirements after June 1 or turned in after the June 1 deadline.

Denial: Any applicant who did not meet the cut off of being chosen to attend orientation or did not meet application requirements. An explanation to the applicant will be stated in the status letter.

Once all applicants are ranked, they will receive a letter stating their application status VIA email only, no later than June 15 of the application year.

All “Accepted” and the selected “Alternate” applicants will receive an “Acceptance Form” included with their letter. On this form, the student must accept or forgo their status by the deadline provided and return via email only to Lgarcia539@alamo.edu. If an applicant declines, or fails to reply by the given deadline, it will be assumed that the applicant has chosen to forgo their status, and the next completed alternate will move up in rank. See “Alternate Protocol” for further details.

Alternate Protocol

In the occasion an accepted student forgoes their acceptance, a position in the Fall semester will become available. The order of occurrence for which alternates will be offered an “Accepted” status is as follows:

  • The highest ranking alternate will be offered the position via email only and must respond by the given deadline. If that applicant declines, or if additional positions become available, we will continue down the alternate list in order of highest to lowest ranking.
  • “Pending” applicants will not be considered for acceptance until their application requirements have been completed. *These applicants will not surpass an alternate who had a completed application packet by the June 1 deadline. As “pending alternate” applicants complete their application requirements, their status will be re-evaluated.

 

Additional information

If a student has applied, and was not accepted and wishes to reapply to the program the following year, they will be required to complete the full application process again which will include an additional 80 or more clinical experience hours. All submitted hours must be acquired within 12 months of the application due date.

If a student applied and was accepted but did not attend any veterinary technology courses and wishes to reapply to the program the following year, they will be required to complete the full application process, which will include an additional 80 or more clinical experience hours. All submitted hours must be acquired within 12 months of the application due date. These students will only be allowed to reapply and be accepted to the program once more as a new student to the program.

Other Information for New Students

What makes a competitive application?

  • Total GPA: A student's total GPA will be calculated by ALL college courses completed throughout his/her college career. Maintaining the highest GPA possible is recommended for a stronger application. All application points will be added to the total GPA.
  • Degree: Applicants with proof of a completed degree will be awarded additional points depending on level of degree. 
  • Total number of Clinical Experience hours obtained: Applicants who complete more than the 80 required clinical experience hours will be awarded additional points for additional hours worked.
  • Reference form: Students will be awarded points based on the evaluation by the DVM/LVT after obtaining clinical experience hours. Better performance equals a better reference from the DVM/LVT.

What will be needed once I’ve been accepted?

  • Physical Exam and Current Tetanus: Once accepted into the program, students will be required to provide a copy of a current physical exam and immunization record showing proof of current tetanus, within 10 years, prior to being enrolled in the program.  
  • Complete required paperwork prior to orientation: Required paperwork will be included in the orientation packet that will be mailed and acceptance and will be due at the mandatory orientation.
  • Attend the mandatory orientation: All accepted applicants, as well as a select number of alternates, will be invited to attend a mandatory orientation. If students do not attend the orientation, Palo Alto College will assume the student will forgo acceptance and the position will be offered to the highest ranking Alternate. 
  • Order scrubs and other equipment: Full uniform(s) and related equipment (see Handbook under accessories) are not optional and must be ordered at orientation. Students must have a uniform in possession prior to classes starting.
  • Order textbooks: Students must have all required text books in possession prior to classes starting. Textbooks are not optional and are necessary for success in the program. Discounted bundles may be offered at orientation.                             
Admission Requirements for Returning Students

If a student wishes to return to the program as either a part-time or full-time student, the guidelines in the “Admission Process Check List for Returning Students” must be followed. There is no automatic re-admission to the program. 

If a student drops a course or withdraws from the program, the student must have met with the Program Director prior to dropping to be considered for re-admission. If you institutionally withdrew, supporting documentation must be provided which will aid in the decision for your eligibility for re-entry.

Applicants are required to submit their completed application packet with all supporting documents via email only to Lgarcia539@alamo.edu by 5:00 p.m. of the corresponding deadline:

Fall semester
Beginning January 1st and ending June 1st   

Spring semester
Beginning August 1st and ending November 1st  

Summer semester
Beginning January 1st and ending March 1st

Steps to Apply

  1. GPA: Student must be a student in good standing with college and have a minimum total GPA of 2.0.
    1. GPA will be determined on degree courses only.
  2. Submit Work Time Sheet and “Proof of Clinical Experience” form:
    1. A minimum of an additional 365 hours or more of documented clinical experience is required to be completed within 1 year of re-applying to the PACVTP.
      1. NOTE: These hours do not include the submitted hours from the initial application.
    2. The hours must be completed under the supervision of a D.V.M. or L.V.T. only
    3. Shelter hours are acceptable as long as the hours are obtained in the clinic area and with a D.V.M. supervisor.
      1. Acceptable proof of clinical hours includes BOTH of the following:
        1. Time sheet: Submit either the time sheet included in the downloadable application packet or a computer printed time sheet from your clinic only. If any other form is submitted it will not be accepted. Must include the total number of hours worked and the D.V.M. signature only.
        2. “Proof of Clinical Experience” form: A D.V.M. or L.V.T. must sign the form included in the downloadable application packet only.
  3. Have D.V.M./L.V.T. submit Request for Reference form:
    1. Each applicant is responsible for procuring a signed “Request for Reference” form included in the downloadable application packet. This form must be completed by a D.V.M. or L.V.T. only, from the clinic where the hours were completed.
    2. Once the form is complete:
      1. The D.V.M. or L.V.T. must submit the completed form via their work email address only to Lgarcia539@alamo.edu.
      2. If this is received from the applicants’ or any email other than the D.V.M. or L.V.T. email address, the form will not be accepted.
  4. Submit an Action Plan Essay:
    1. A 500-word essay, detailing changes you plan to make for successful continuation in the program and specifically addressing behaviors that led to unsuccessful course completion.
  5. Submit completed application packet (PDF)to Palo Alto Veterinary Technology Program:
    1. Submit “Veterinary Technology Program Application” form included in the downloadable application packet along with all other documents to be considered for admission to the program.
    2. Submitting an application to PACVTP does not automatically guarantee re-acceptance into the program.
  6. Veterinary Technology Interview:
    1. Upon completion of all the above requirements you will be scheduled a time to attend a mandatory interview with the Veterinary Technology Admissions Panel.
  7. Submit Essential Functions/Technical Standards Form:
    1. Read and acknowledge by signing the Essential Functions/Technical Standards for in the downloadable application packet.
Application Selection Process for Returning Students

Candidate selection will be based on the applicant’s successful completion of Palo Alto College and Veterinary Technology program admission requirements, the applicant’s total GPA from degree courses only, number of clinical experience hours earned, and the D.V.M./L.V.T. reference form, Action plan Essay, student motivation, interest in the field and Interview Process. All requirements are taken into consideration. 

The program admission panel will evaluate each reentry request and reserves the right to not fill every seat if the applicant is deemed not qualified for readmission.

All students will be notified by June 15th for the Fall semester, November 15th for Spring semester, and March 20th for Summer semester. Applicants who have met all the application requirements will be notified about a date for the interview process with the program interview panel prior to acceptance.

After the interview, if accepted, applicants will receive an “Acceptance Form” with their letter via email only. On this form, the student must accept or forgo their status by the deadline provided and return via email only Lgarcia539@alamo.edu. If an applicant fails to reply by the given deadline, it will be assumed that the applicant has chosen to forgo their status, and the next accepted applicant will move up in rank.

Additional information

Accepted:
Those students that met the application requirements and voted by the program admission panel to return to the program.

Denied:
Those students that were denied for any reason. An explanation to the applicant will be stated in the
status letter. These students are eligible to reapply only as a returning student that must follow the
returner guidelines for readmission; however, must restart the curriculum.

Students are allowed readmission only one time to the program. The program admission panel will look at exceptions to this rule on a case-by-case basis.

Credentialing Eligibility Information

Upon completion of Program and College requirements for the Associate of Applied Science Degree in Veterinary Technology from an AVMA-accredited program, the graduate is eligible for the national examination (VTNE) and state LVT exam. Passing of a national certification exam is not required for awarding the AAS degree in Veterinary Technology and completion of the AAS degree does not guarantee passage of these exams. A graduate is not an LVT until s/he meets the requirements of the state credentialing agency. Graduates are eligible to be credentialed upon successful completion of the VTNE and, in Texas, the LVTE.

NOTE: A Social Security number is required to complete the licensing process in Texas. If you don’t have a SS number you still may be able to take the state exam, but the license will not be issued until a SS number is obtained.

Applicants with a criminal history are strongly recommended to contact the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners to request a Criminal History Evaluation Letter. This will allow the student to pursue credentialing with greater confidence of being able to be licensed upon completion of the program.

NOTE: If a prospective student has a felony conviction this could result in denial of licensure. These students would not be eligible for admissions into the program until a declaratory order process is completed with the licensure board and proof of eligibility for licensure or certification is provided. Applicants with a criminal record should contact the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners. 

For additional information please contact: https://www.veterinary.texas.gov/forms.php

Program Information and Tour Sessions

Monthly information sessions and tours of the Veterinary Technology building are available for prospective students to learn more about the program and/or admission process. It is highly recommended for prospective students to attend one of these information sessions. 

Friday, Aug. 14 2020 (9 a.m.)

Friday, Sept 18, 2020 (9 a.m.)

Friday, Oct 16, 2020 (9 a.m.)

Friday, Nov 13, 2020 (9 a.m.)

Friday, Dec 4, 2020 (9 a.m.)

All of these sessions will take place virtually using Zoom. Please contact Leanna Ruiz at Lgarcia539@alamo.edu to RSVP and get the link to the Zoom meeting. 

Contact 

Information

Dr. Raymond Pfang
Dean of Academic Success

Location:
Sabine Hall (SABINE 115)

Phone:
210-486-3921

Laurie Pawelek, A.A.S., L.V.T.
Director of Veterinary Technology

Location:
Veterinary Technology (VT–100)

Phone:
210-486-3369

 

 

Elena Garza
Administrative Services Specialist

Location:
Veterinary Technology (VT–100)

Phone:
210-486-3355

Leanna Ruiz, A.A.S., L.V.T.
Academic Advisor (contact for Admission questions)

Location:
Veterinary Technology (VT–109)

Phone:
210-486-3360

 

 

Malorie Vallejo
Certified Advisor

Location:
Palomino Center 114

Phone:
210-486-3668