The folks in our Education and Research Division’s Center for Veterinary Medical Education Accreditation will be logging quite a few miles into the foreseeable future as they visit veterinary technician programs around the country that are either seeking first-time accreditation or reaccreditation of their vet-tech programs.
This year, they’ll travel to 37 different programs, and they’ll set an all-time record in 2011, when they’re already scheduled to visit 45 more programs. That number is bound to increase as more applications for accreditation come in. The site-visit demands being placed on both staff members and members of our Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA) mirror the growing demand for veterinary technicians around the country.
There are 165 CVTEA accredited veterinary technician programs in the U.S., and that number has doubled over the past 10 years. The latest spike in programs seeking accreditation began back in 2007, and the number continues to rise. This doesn’t come as a surprise, as we continue to experience an increasing demand for credentialed veterinary technicians across the professional spectrum. Giving an extra boost to the creation of more programs is the fact that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics lists veterinary technologists and technicians as 13th on the list of the 30 fastest-growing occupations between 2008 and 2018.
The AVMA’s growing involvement in accrediting vet-tech programs is a reflection of our commitment to one of our key association objectives, which focuses on increasing the number of veterinary technicians in the workforce to enhance the profession’s economic viability and sustainability. We will continue to do our part to shape the future of veterinary medicine by promoting veterinary technology and the veterinary professional team through education, quality, integrity, service, leadership and collegiality.