If you love animals and have often thought about the many different ways to work with them, you may consider working as a veterinary technician’. This career allows you to work with the animals you love and work hand in hand in a medical capacity with a trained veterinary. To become a qualified vet tech in Illinois’, you need to attend a good accredited vet tech program in one of the vet tech schools in Illinois.
Job Description and Duties of a Vet Tech
A vet tech is a person who works in a veterinarian’s office and is trained in various skills to assist the vet. A vet tech is somewhat like an animal nurse. He/she helps take care of the animals is also qualified to perform certain procedures and tests, but may not treat or diagnose animals without the supervision of a licensed veterinarian.
Typically, vet techs have skills to take patient history, collect urine samples, record temperature, provide treatment for routine concerns, take and develop x-rays, dress wounds, administer medication and perform intravenous feedings and tube feedings. Vet techs may also clip nails, brush teeth and counsel owners on good health and nutrition for their pets and other animals. Most vet techs also assist in administrative work, maintaining and filing records and handling inventory.
The greatest misconception about vet techs is that they are the same as veterinary assistants. A veterinary assistant doesn’t have to be certified or licensed to practice and they cannot perform the wide range of duties and procedures that vet techs perform. A vet tech is simply there to assist the veterinarians and technicians in a very basic capacity.
Process of Becoming A Veterinary Tech in Illinois
- Start by enrolling in a good vet tech program accredited by American Veterinary Medical-Association (AVMA). An Illinois vet tech must complete an academic program approved by the AVMA. The AVMA website lists approved schools by state.
- Get financial aid. These schools can be quite expensive and so you may need to look for other sources of money to fund your studies. You can apply for financial-aid through your college’s financial-aid department or the government’s financial aid website. In most cases, this aid will offset the cost of fees, classes and books.
- Complete all the coursework.. In a degree program you have to take courses in the traditional classroom setting and also work in hands-on environment with the animals.
- Apply for Veterinary Technician National-Examination test via Illinois Division of Professional-Regulation. Once your exam is approved, they will send it to the Continental Testing services. This is the body that administers all Illinois Veterinary tech exams. The entire application procedure can be done online or even through written correspondence.
- Pass the exam to become one licensed vet tech.
Salary and Career Info
The interactive chart above is a visual representation of the annual salary of Illinois veterinary technicians compared to the national annual salaries, all based on the latest May 2013 Occupational Employment Statistics figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Vet Tech Certification in Illinois
Illinois law also requires vet techs to pass the Technician Veterinary National Exam. In this state, a private testing company called Continental Testing Services administers this test. Candidates for licensure must first submit an application for examination to Division of Professional-Regulation, which will determine eligibility to test and send information regarding registering for the exam. This division permits potential licensees to take the exam before graduation from an approved program but counts the results only if it receives a graduation certificate within 90 days following the graduation date.
Receiving a license by endorsement involves getting a license in one jurisdiction based on meeting similar standards in another. Illinois issues a license to technicians currently in other jurisdictions. To do this, the applicant must arrange for submission of his/her exam scores to the division from the testing entity, provide proof of original licensure and current licensure, give information on any disciplinary action and obtain an educational certificate signed by the registrar/dean of the educational institution where the training took place. The division may request personal appearances to discuss the contents of the application and to determine if the applicant meets all the requirements for a license in Illinois.
Illinois Vet Tech Schools
Located in central part of Illinois, this college offers a 2-year associate’s degree in vet technology. Parkland’s second-year vet tech students have the advantage of getting additional hands-on training in state of the art methods at the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois. Apart from the core courses in English and math, vet tech students also take classes in nursing skills, pharmacology, radiology, animal anatomy and related science courses.
This school offers a full-time, 2-year veterinary technology associate of applied science through a cooperate program at the following schools; Kaskaskia College, Southern Illinois college, Shawnee community college and Rend Lake college . Students take general education courses at home, but must travel to the school’s headquarters to attend the vet tech classes.
This college offers a 2-year program AAS for prospective CVTs (Veterinary certified technicians). Students who complete the program are eligible to write the National Examination for registered Vet Techs in Illinois.