Becoming a Veterinary Technician in Iowa

A career working with animals is a rewarding one, and in Iowa jobs in this field are opening up every day. Projections suggest that careers in veterinary technology, veterinary assisting and animal caregiving will increase by nearly 30 percent over the next several years in Iowa. There will be plenty of opportunities for anyone interested in training to work as a vet tech in the state. [Leer en español]

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Salaries for Veterinary Technicians

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary for a vet tech in Iowa is $30,720. This is lower than the national average for vet techs ($32,350), but top earners in the state can make as much as $42,070, and the cost of living in Iowa is significantly lower than the national average. Animal caregivers and veterinary assistants in Iowa can expect to earn between $24,000 and $38,000 per year.

Veterinary Technician Certification

The state of Iowa does not require that vet techs be certified to work in the state. However, vet techs may choose to be certified through the Iowa Board of Veterinary Medicine (IBVM). Being certified gives an individual a competitive edge when applying for jobs. To qualify, the IBVM requires that vet techs complete an approved veterinary technology program, pass the National Veterinary Technician Examination and the Iowa Veterinary Technician Examination and complete 30 hours of continuing education every three years.

Featured School

Penn Foster College – Veterinary Technician Program

Full accreditation from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Clinical externships through a private practice near your home or Penn Foster College’s partner VCA Animal Hospitals. Gain hands-on experience alongside licensed veterinarians and credentialed veterinary technicians. Call 1-800-851-1819 today.

AVMA-Accredited Veterinary Technician Programs

IBVM-approved training programs for vet techs include those that are accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA):

Veterinary Technician Employers in Iowa

Currently, 790 veterinary technicians work in Iowa, along with 650 veterinary assistants and animal caregivers. The number of positions available is expected to continue to grow, and there are many opportunities for new vet techs to find work:

Professional Organizations

In Iowa, vet techs can join the Central Iowa Veterinary Technician Association to get access to professional resources, networking opportunities, job listings and continuing education. For similar resources on a national level, Iowa vet techs may want to also join the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America.

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College and University Listings

Cedar Rapids, IA Area

Kirkwood Community College

6301 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52406-2068
Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

Kirkwood Community College’s Associate-level Veterinary Technician program is taught at their campus in the city of Cedar Rapids, IA. This public college has about 14,190 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are likely to be around $4,194 and for out-of-state students likely to be about $5,034 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $2,500, although this varies from program to program.

Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL Area

Eastern Iowa Community College District

306 W River Dr, Davenport, Iowa 52801-1221
Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

The Associate’s degree program at Eastern Iowa Community College District can be taken at their campus in the city of Davenport, IA. This public college has approximately 8,143 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for students living in the state is in the order of $4,480 and for students from outside the state around $6,624 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,600, depending on the program.

Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA Area

Des Moines Area Community College

2006 Ankeny Blvd, Ankeny, Iowa 50023-3993
Veterinary Technology – Associate Program

Des Moines Area Community College’s Associate program in Veterinary Technology is based at their campus in Ankeny in Polk County. The majority of of the school’s 23,526 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is usually around $3,913 and for out-of-state students in the order of $7,825 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $1,470, although this will vary with the program.

Northeast Iowa nonmetropolitan area Area

Northeast Iowa Community College

1625 Hwy 150, Calmar, Iowa 52132-0400
Large Animal Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

The Large Animal Veterinary Technician Associate’s program at Northeast Iowa Community College is taught at their campus in Calmar in Winneshiek County. This public college has approximately 4,934 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition is in the order of $4,676 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $1,400, although this will vary with the program.

Northwest Iowa nonmetropolitan area Area

Iowa Lakes Community College

19 S 7th St, Estherville, Iowa 51334-2295
Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

The Associate’s degree program at Iowa Lakes Community College is offered at their campus in the town of Estherville. The college has around 2,340 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are in the order of $5,676 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $6,028 yearly. Learning materials may cost about $1,300, although this will vary with the program.

Omaha-Council Bluffs, NE-IA Area

Iowa Western Community College

2700 College Rd, Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503-1057
Veterinary Technology – Associate Program

Iowa Western Community College’s Associate-level Veterinary Technology program is offered at their campus in the city of Council Bluffs. The college has in the region of 6,547 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are likely to be in the order of $5,216 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $5,376 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,188, although this varies from program to program.

Sioux City, IA-NE-SD Area

Western Iowa Tech Community College

4647 Stone Ave, Sioux City, Iowa 51102-5199
Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program

Western Iowa Tech Community College’s Certificate-level Veterinary Assistant program is taught at their campus in the city of Sioux City. The college has approximately 6,399 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is usually around $4,104 and for out-of-state students in the order of $4,128 per year. Books and supplies can cost in the order of $1,224, although this will depend on the program.

* Tuition fees and accredition status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college before applying.

Other Options

Iowa residents have further educational options in the neighboring states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri, Nebraska and South Dakota.