The field of veterinary technology is a bright spot in the struggling Nebraska job market. While job growth has been negative in this state in the last few years, veterinary technician positions are projected to grow 28.8 percent by 2022. For Nebraskans interested in a stable and rewarding technical career in healthcare, veterinary technology offers great opportunities. [Leer en español]
Salaries for Veterinary Technicians
The mean annual salary for veterinary technicians in Nebraska is somewhat similar to the national average for this career: $36,940 compared to $36,850. However, the cost of living in Nebraska is 11.5 percent lower than the national average, and the average home price in Nebraska is also significantly below average. As a result, veterinary technicians in Nebraska can maintain a relatively high standard of living.
Requirements for Veterinary Technicians
Veterinary technicians in Nebraska are required to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE), which in this state is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB). The AAVSB allows each candidate five opportunities to pass the exam. After passing the VTNE, candidates must apply for licensure with the Nebraska Division of Public Health before they can begin working as veterinary technicians in Nebraska.
Veterinary Technician National Examination
The Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) is a three-hour, 150-question multiple-choice examination. The exam covers topics like Anatomy and Physiology, Animal Nursing, Clinical Pathology, Dentistry, Anesthesiology, Surgery, Pharmacology, and Radiography. Preparation for the VTNE includes completing educational requirements through an accredited veterinary technology program and completing a one-year internship program.
American Veterinary Medical Association -Accredited Veterinary Technician Programs
There are currently two veterinary technician programs in Nebraska. Northeast Community College in Norfolk offers an associate of applied science degree, and Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture (which has probationary accreditation) also offers an associate of applied science. Vatterott College, which has had a vet tech program since 1984, is voluntarily terminating its program and therefore unlikely to be accepting new students.
Major Veterinary Technician Employers in Nebraska
Veterinary technicians in Nebraska may work in animal hospitals, veterinary clinics, humane societies, animal shelters, or commercial farms. Experienced vet techs may also have supervisory or teaching duties. Facilities in Nebraska that need veterinary technicians include:
- Companion Care Veterinary Clinic, Lincoln
- Alliance Animal Clinic, Alliance
- VCA Animal Medical Center of Omaha, Omaha
- The Pet Clinic, Omaha
The Nebraska Veterinary Technician Association (NVTA) is the leading professional association for vet techs in Nebraska. Many employers will pay for their employees to join the NVTA, which provides continuing education opportunities in addition to job postings and information about legislative items that may affect veterinary care. Veterinary technicians may also join the Nebraska Veterinary Medical Association (NVMA) or the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA).
Veterinary Technician Schools in Nebraska
Lincoln, NE Area
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
14th and R St, Lincoln, Nebraska 68588
The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Bachelor’s program in Veterinary Technology is based at their Lincoln campus in the city of Lincoln. Of the 25,006 students, about 20% are postgraduates. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is usually in the order of $8,367 and for students from outside the state around $22,534 for each academic year. Study materials can cost roughly $1,070, depending on the program chosen.
Northeastern Nebraska nonmetropolitan area Area
Northeast Community College
801 E Benjamin, Norfolk, Nebraska 68702-0469
Northeast Community College’s Associate-level Veterinary Technology program is taught at its campus in the town of Norfolk, Nebraska. This public college has a region of 5,061 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 around $3,165 and for out-of-state students likely to be about $4,215 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,414, although this varies from program to program.
Western Nebraska nonmetropolitan area Area
Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture
404 East 7th, Curtis, Nebraska 69025-9552
Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. All programs are offered at their campus in Curtis in Frontier County, NE. The majority of the school’s 384 students are 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 $4,602 and for out-of-state students likely to be about $9,363 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,000, although this varies from program to program.
* Tuition fees and accreditation status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with the college before applying.