Veterinary Technician Associate Degree Program

Associate Degree - Hybrid (Online & On-Campus)

Veterinary Technician

The Veterinary Technician Associate’s Degree is designed to prepare students with the skills and procedures to effectively contribute to the health and well-being of veterinary patients. The mission of the Veterinary Technician program is to prepare students to work in a small animal clinic setting. While the emphasis is on small animal settings, the student is also exposed to large animal and research information. Veterinary technicians, while always working under the supervision of a veterinarian, provide many services. Routine duties include restraint of animals, sample collection, nursing care (IV catheter placement, bandage application, medication administration, etc.), feeding of animals, record keeping, office procedures, and client education and communication.

  • Perform patient examinations and collect data on vital signs.
  • Calculate, prepare, and administer medications by common drug routes and prepare pharmaceuticals as prescribed by a veterinarian.
  • Prepare anesthetic delivery systems, induce anesthesia, monitor patients under anesthesia, manage complications, and recover anesthesia.
  • Perform dental prophylactic procedures on dogs and cats.
  • Collect and process samples for diagnostic tests, such as blood chemistries, differentials, culture/sensitivities and EKGs.
  • Recognize and assess behavioral signs of animals and how it relates to husbandry, handling and disease.
  • Educate clients on their animal’s health, nutrition, management during illness and preventative medicine as well as euthanasia
  • Perform nursing care for small, large and exotic species while being advocates for the animals health.

Course Details

  • Delivery Method: Hybrid
  • Program Length: 24 months
  • Credits: 114.5

Career Options

  • Veterinary Hospitals
  • On-site Veterinary Services
  • Animal Hospitals and Shelters

Industry Growth

  • According to the American Pet Products Association, pet owners are expected to spend over $143 billion on their pets this year.1
  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of Veterinary Assistants is projected to grow 20% in Illinois from 2021 to 2031.2

What You Will Learn

  • Anesthesia: Learn the principles and techniques of administering anesthesia to animals, ensuring their safety and comfort during surgical procedures.
  • Emergency Medicine/Critical Care: Gain expertise in handling emergency situations and providing critical care to animals in need of immediate medical attention.
  • Pharmacy & Pharmacology: Understand the fundamentals of veterinary pharmacy, including medications and their appropriate usage for different animal species.
  • Pain Management/Analgesia: Master the techniques and protocols for effectively managing and alleviating pain in animals, ensuring their well-being and comfort.
  • Dentistry: Learn the importance of dental health in animals and acquire skills in dental procedures, such as cleaning, extractions, and oral examinations.
  • Laboratory Procedures: Develop proficiency in conducting various laboratory tests and procedures to assist in diagnosing and monitoring the health of animals.
  • Diagnostic Imaging: Acquire knowledge of diagnostic imaging techniques, such as X-rays and ultrasound, to aid in diagnosing and treating animal illnesses or injuries.
  • Veterinary Medical Nursing: Learn the essential nursing skills and techniques necessary for providing comprehensive care to animals under the supervision of a veterinarian.

The Rockford Career College Advantage

Rockford Career College is a distinguished institution that prioritizes career-focused education, equipping students with practical skills and real-world experience in their desired fields. What sets Rockford Career College apart is its unwavering commitment to preparing students for success in the workforce.

  • Programs: Choose from a diverse range of programs in animal sciences, healthcare, business, cannabis, and skilled trades. Our programs are meticulously crafted to provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to thrive in their chosen careers.
  • Small Class Sizes: Benefit from personalized attention and support from our instructors, thanks to our small class sizes. This approach ensures a deeper understanding of the subject matter and the ability to apply it to real-world scenarios.
  • Multiple Schedule Options: We understand the demands of your life. That's why we offer on-campus, hybrid, and fully online diploma and degree programs that provide the flexibility you need to accommodate your lifestyle.
  • Experienced Faculty: Learn from industry professionals who bring extensive experience and expertise to the classroom. Our faculty members provide invaluable real-world insights and connections to enhance your learning journey.
  • Hands-on Training: Gain practical skills through hands-on training in state-of-the-art labs and clinical settings. Apply what you learn in the classroom to real-world situations, enhancing your confidence and readiness for your future career.


  • On-Campus & Online Options
  • 20+ Career-Focused Programs
  • Hands-On & Real World Training
  • Inclusive Small Class Sizes
  • Caring Instructors
  • Student-Centered Experience
  • Tutoring & Personalized Support
  • Financial Aid for Those Who Qualify
  • Externship Opportunities
  • Career Placement Assistance & dedicated career services team
  • RCC is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)

"I’m the first in my family to get a college degree – and I couldn’t be happier that I did it at RCC! Anything is possible – especially if you have a support system like I did behind me."

Karyssa Mosher Schwickerath

2022 Graduate, Veterinary Technician


VTNE Pass Rates July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2023
Number of first-time candidates that have taken the VTNE 86
Three-year VTNE pass percentage 58.14%