Become a Vet Tech in Louisiana
According to statistics from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), growth in jobs for vet techs will be strong--by 2016 this area is expected to grow by 36 percent. That rate of growth is much faster than the average for overall employment. At the national level, the BLS reports salaries for veterinary technicians are in the range of $19,770 to $41,490 annually. The mean yearly wage for vet techs is $29,850, while the mean hourly wage is $14.35. In Louisiana, veterinary techs generally have wages that match the national pay rates.
Steps to Be a Veterinary Tech in Louisiana
- To gain admission to one of the online or campus based Louisiana vet tech programs, you will need to graduate from high school; the GED is sometimes acceptable. Good courses while still in school include science courses such as biology and chemistry. Basic math skills, good computer skills and good communications skills are all helpful. Good writing skills are also valuable. A valuable way to get real-life experience with animal care and show your commitment is to be a volunteer at an animal rescue shelter.
- Vocational high schools in Louisiana often have animal science programs. This track is good background for going on to a veterinary tech program. Courses within an allied health program are a good choice if your school doesn't have an animal science program.
- To become a veterinary tech in Louisiana, you must complete an accredited two-year program that leads to the degree associate of applied science (AAS).
In Louisiana, veterinary technicians must register with the Louisiana Board of Veterinary Medicine. To become registered, you must meet three basic requirements:
- You must graduate from an accredited veterinary tech school.
- You must have a passing grade on the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) given by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (www.aavsb.org).
- You must provide two letters of personal reference.
Completing the registration process allows you to use the credential registered veterinary technician (RVT) in the state.