Tidewater Community College’s Veterinary Technology program has earned initial accreditation from the American Veterinary Medical Association.

This is the first new accreditation of an associate degree program in the state of Virginia since 1980. Initial accreditation gives the TCC program all the benefits of full accreditation.

TCC launched its veterinary technology program, which allows students to earn an Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology, in fall 2018. The inaugural cohort will complete all program requirements by August.

The TCC program is one of three in the state and the only one in Hampton Roads. Students receive hands-on training with all species in addition to classroom instruction on the Virginia Beach Campus.

“This is a milestone for our program,” said program head Megan Taliaferro. “By achieving accreditation, our students and the veterinary practices that will ultimately employ them know that the TCC program meets the highest standards in veterinary education.”

The need for veterinary technicians is anticipated to grow by 60 percent in TCC’s service region in the next decade, according to EMSI, an economic indicator for higher education.

Veterinary technicians assist veterinarians in diagnosing and treating animals. Their duties include working with veterinarians during examinations and surgeries, conducting routine procedures, such as immunizations and dental cleanings, and educating pet owners about the health care of animals.

Graduates are prepared for employment in a multitude of settings, ranging from animal, equine and food animal practices; biomedical research facilities; pharmaceutical companies; zoos; and specialty and emergency practices.

The program is geared toward those with some experience in the veterinary field. Those who haven’t worked in a professional setting can gain experience by completing TCC’s 17-credit Career Studies Certificate in Veterinary Assistant.

Visit tcc.edu/vettech for admission requirements and an application. The application deadline for the cohort that will begin this fall has been extended to June 15.

Contact Taliaferro for more information at mtaliaferro@tcc.edu or 757-822-7264.