Veterinary technicians, or vet techs, must be licensed by the Maine Board of Veterinary Medicine to work in the state. Once requirements are met, vet techs have the opportunity to have a career in a rewarding field caring for animals. Maine animal lovers can also work as veterinary assistants or animal caretakers, careers which do not require licensing or specific training. [Leer en español]
The field of animal careers, including veterinary technology, is growing in Maine. New positions open up every year for vet techs to earn an average of $32,930, which is higher than the national average salary. Top earners in veterinary technology can make up to $42,750 per year. Although vet assistants and animal caretakers don’t have to be licensed, they still earn a good living with an average annual salary of $29,210.
To work as a vet tech in Maine, as in many other states, you have to be licensed. Vet techs in Maine can apply for licensing by submitting an application, a $71 fee and supporting documents to the Maine Board of Veterinary Medicine. A complete application must include transcripts proving the successful completion of a vet tech program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and proof of a passing score on the Veterinary Technology National Examination.
There is just one veterinary program in the state accredited by the AVMA. The program is at the Bangor campus of the University of Maine at Augusta. Just across the state line with Maine, New Hampshire has two AVMA-accredited programs at Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth, NH and the University of New Hampshire in Durham. Maine residents can also complete an accredited online program from institutions like Penn Foster College or Blue Ridge Community College.
The 720 vet techs and 530 veterinary assistants and animal caretakers working in Maine are employed by veterinarians, animal hospitals, research laboratories, shelters and other institutions. A variety of employment opportunities are available for those interested in vet tech careers, including jobs at the following locations:
- The Jackson Laboratory, Bar Harbor
- Animal Emergency Clinic of Mid-Maine, Lewiston
- Lucerne Veterinary Hospital, Holden
- Coastal Humane Society, Brunswick
- VCA North Portland Veterinary Hospital, Portland
Vet techs working in Maine can join the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America. This national professional organization provides members with networking opportunities, continuing education, group discounts and information on job openings. The Maine Veterinary Medical Association, which is an organization for veterinarians, offers vet techs the chance to earn a scholarship through its Education Foundation.
College and University Listings
The University of Maine at Augusta offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Bachelor program. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Augusta. The majority of of the school’s 4,664 students are on 4-year programs. The University of Maine at Augusta has institutional accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education. Tuition fees for in-state students are generally around $7,448 and for students from other states around $16,688 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,200, depending 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.