Veterinary Technician Associate Degree Program

Veterinary Technician Associate Degree Program

CVTEA and Fear Free

All programs have been converted to a hybrid format incorporating online instruction with on-campus instruction for hands-on components.  Please contact the school for program specifics and safety guidance and protocols.

Enrollment and financial aid can be done from home. Use your time wisely and enroll today.

What is a Veterinary Technician?

A Veterinary Technician is like nurses for animals and they function as the primary support for Veterinarians in an animal hospital. Veterinary Technicians are involved in all manner of animal care within an animal hospital setting with the exception of directly performing surgery, performing diagnosis of animals and prescribing medications in the process of animal care. Veterinary Technicians participate in lab tests and sampling, taking X-rays, performing physical exams on pets prior to surgery, ensuring equipment is ready for surgical procedures, supervise and train practice personal, perform dental prophylaxes as well as many other related tasks. Veterinary Technicians are crucial to animal hospital functions and a growing profession as more and more animal hospitals launch in new locations.

According to the American Pet Products Association, pet owners are expected to spend over $99 billion on their pets this year, including animal care.1

What Career Options are Available for Veterinary Technicians?

Veterinary Technicians primarily work in animal hospitals and veterinary offices but Veterinary Technicians may also work in laboratories, boarding kennels, animal shelters, rescue leagues and pet stores. To become a Veterinary Technician, one must first pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Once an individual has passed the VTNE, he/she will be eligible for employment in any of the previously mentioned environments and organizations.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs for veterinary technicians is expected to increase by 19% in the United States.2

How do I Start a Veterinary Technician Program?

The key to gaining employment as a Veterinary Technician is first you must graduate from an accredited Veterinary Technician program and then pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Our instructors are passionate about teaching and committed to preparing each student to pass the VTNE. With a VTNE certification, you are qualified for higher-salaried jobs. In addition, our Rockford Career College comprehensive program includes course work in general education and includes a heavy emphasis on communication skills valued by employers.

Why Choose Our College?

For over 150 years, Rockford Career College has provided training for companies to grow and for people to advance in their respective careers. We take a streamlined approach to education. Our curricula help students develop a particular skill set and knowledge base for a career rather than receive only a general education. We train you for jobs that employers tell us are truly needed in your community.

We offer affordable programs that typically take less time to complete and have smaller class sizes than those of other schools. That means you’ll get plenty of one-on-one attention, unlike a big school. You’ll learn from highly-qualified and caring instructors, who have real-world experience in their field. Most programs have classes that are highly hands-on so you can get a feel for what you’re learning. Some programs also offer an externship off-campus at a local employer where you’ll put your skills to work.

We offer on-campus, hybrid, and completely online diploma and degree programs that could provide you with more opportunities for jobs with room for growth.

We know it's all about a job. Our career services team has done the networking for you with numerous local employers. Prior to graduation, we could help find the perfect job for you. Employers have consistently placed confidence in our graduates' abilities.

All of us here at Rockford Career College are here to help you succeed, whether it’s our free tutoring, helpful financial aid options, or connecting you with businesses for that great job. We are here to prepare you for quick entry into the workforce.

Financial Aid available to those who qualify.

Program Length - 24 months


Find Out More

61% of the program can be taken online (learn more)

2, retrieved 4/19/2020


VTNE Pass Rates Rockford Campus July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2020        
Number of first-time candidates that have taken the VTNE 128
Three-year VTNE pass percentage 63.28%

If you have a animal safety or welfare concern with the patients being used in our program please contact Rebecca Cardenas, IACUC Chairperson



Healthcare curriculum for this program includes anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, microbiology, operating skills, surgical technology and surgical pharmacy. This program also includes general education courses to meet the requirements of an associate degree program including government, ethics, critical thinking, success strategies and written and oral communications. Prior to graduation, students complete an externship in a veterinary setting, providing real-world work experience. 

Upon completion, you could earn an Associate of Applied Science degree and be eligible to take the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE).

The program is fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA).

Veterinary technicians have a variety of responsibilities. While they work with animals, they must also have good people skills. They educate clients on their pets’ health and nutrition, and explain the veterinarian’s instructions for care. Veterinary technicians perform medical tests under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian to help diagnose animals’ illnesses and injuries. Technicians may perform laboratory tests, such as a urinalysis, and help veterinarians conduct a variety of other diagnostic tests.

Graduates can work in private clinics, laboratories, animal hospitals, boarding kennels, animal shelters, rescue leagues, and even zoos.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs for veterinary technicians is expected to increase by 19% in the United States.1, retrieved 4/19/2020

Rockford, Illinois