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Veterinary Technology

Veterinary Technology

The Veterinary Medical Technology Program is designed for the student who wishes to become a certified veterinary technician. The program combines classroom experience with clinical experience in community veterinary hospital facilities.

The Vet Tech program is designed for 48 full-time students, and is a two-year program, which is the equivalent of five semesters. A choice of day or evening classes is offered. At the time of acceptance, an offer for day or evening admissions will be made. This determination is made upon space availability in the program at the time of acceptance.

Degree Requirements

What Will I Learn?

A Veterinary Medical Technician is a member of the veterinary health team who has been educated in the care and handling of animals. They can be to a veterinarian what a nurse is to a physician. However, a technician is limited by the State Practice Act, which precludes diagnosing, prescribing medication, and performing surgery. The veterinary medical technician is employed under the supervision of a veterinarian.

The Vet Tech assists veterinarians with duties that include:

  • Communicate information to people about their animal(s)
  • Administer medication
  • Assist the veterinarian in diagnosis
  • Take an animal's history
  • Perform physical exams
  • Assist in medical procedures
  • Nursing care for the patient while in the hospital
  • Assist the veterinarian in surgical procedures
  • Assist in preparing patients for surgery
  • Assist in preparing instruments for surgery
  • Record data in a computer
  • Take and develop radiographs
  • Complete laboratory testing
  • Monitor anesthesia
  • Collect blood and tissue specimens
  • Provide specialized medical care
  • Dental prophylaxis
  • Supervise and train clinic staff

What is Unique About Our Veterinary Technology Program?

A student who completes the program is awarded an Associate in Applied Science degree and is eligible to write the National Examination for Registered Veterinary Technicians for licensure in Illinois. The examination is administered by the Department of Professional Regulation.

The Veterinary Medical Technology Program is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and is approved by the state of Illinois.

Our 3 year pass rate (July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2017) for the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) was 100%. During that 3 year time frame 88 students were eligible to take the (VTNE) and 84 took the exam. 

What Are My Career Opportunities?

The Associate in Applied Science Degree in Veterinary Medical Technology and the subsequent certification through testing will provide unique career opportunities. Those career opportunities may include, but might not be limited to the following:

  • Zoological institutions
  • Large animal and small animal private practices
  • Colleges of veterinary medicine
  • Veterinary medical technology programs
  • Facilities for medial research
  • Governmental practices
  • Diagnostic laboratories
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Pet food manufacturers
  • Laboratory assistants
  • Biomedical facilities
  • Veterinary supply sales
  • Wildlife facilities
  • Humane societies
  • Animal control facilities
  • Food safety inspection
  • Admissions Procedure

    All students must meet the following prerequisites in order to be eligible and have a complete application by the June 1st annual deadline:

    1. Complete a JJC college application.
    2. Submit official, sealed transcripts (all transcripts must be sent from the original institution directly to Joliet Junior College) to Joliet Junior College, Academic Credentials office, 1215 Houbolt, Joliet, IL 60431-8938.
      • High School or high school equivalency (GED, HiSET, TASC)
      • All College transcripts (other than JJC)
      • ACT scores (if less than 24 months after your high school graduation date
    3. Submit a Transcript Evaluation Request Form. View your academic summary on E-Resources in approximately 4-6 weeks for your evaluation of transfer credit and the JJC equivalencies.
    4. Complete the VMTP application. The application is available once yearly from January 1st through June 1st, for students who have met the VMTP admissions criteria.
    5. Either of the following standardized testing minimums:
      • Placement test placing student higher than MATH 094 or previous credit in MATH 094 (or higher) with a grade of "C" or better. For more information contact the Academic Skills Center. Or
      • ACT scores of 22 for Math
    6. Completion of the following courses with a grade of "C" or better:
      • ENG 101 or ENG 102;
      • Introductory Level Social Science course;
      • BIO 100;
      • BIO 149 or BIO 151 (general Biology);
      • BIO 240 (which has a pre-requisite of BIO 149 or BIO 151);
    7. Consult with the admissions specialist (815) 280-2247 or meet with a vet tech advisor (815) 280-2746.
    8. Applicants will receive an email notification from a JJC email account acknowledging receipt of the application.

    Self-advising is not recommended.

  • Ranking Process

    Due to the large volume of applicants relative to the number of available positions in the program, a point ranking system will be used to determine acceptance into the VMTP.

    • Each eligible application will be given a number for anonymity and demographic data will be removed from the advisor summary.

      Applicants will be scored and ranked based on:
    • Calculated GPA based upon the grades for prerequisite general education classes (ENG 101 or ENG 102, an introductory level Social Science, BIO 100, BIO 149 or BIO 151, BIO 160 and BIO 240) (weighted 50%). If a student has received course credit for any class where there is no grade given, the student's grade for purposes of awarding points will be counted as a "C".
      • Percent credit hours completed (weighted 25%)
      • Experience (weighted 25%) (Veterinary/animal experience form):
        • Veterinary/Animal Research experience. Any paid or volunteer work performed in a veterinary or research facility, including job shadowing, and observation. Students may submit up to a total of 80 hours to receive a maximum of 9% overall consideration. Students submitting less than 80 will receive a prorated proportion of that 9%.
        • Animal experience. All verifiable animal care and training experience, including 4-H, FFA, Wilco Vet Assistant course and kennel/boarding facility work. Please complete the entire form to verify these experience. Verification = 2.5% of overall consideration.
        • Successful completion of NAVTA approved/ICCB governed Veterinary Assistant Certificates. Completed certificate = 9% of overall consideration.
        • Successful completion of the Joliet Junior College LLC 119 course, Orientation to Veterinary Technology. Successful completion of class = 4.5% of overall consideration.
    • Proof of residency. In-district residents will be awarded twenty five (25) additional points. The applicant must live in the Joliet Junior College district at least 90 days prior to the application deadline date. It is the applicant's responsibility to demonstrate residency status by submitting two (2) proofs of residency. The following documents may be presented to verify residency and must be in the student's name: voter's registration card, property tax statement, income tax return, mortgage or mortgage statement, utility bills (gas and electric), and bank statements. The proofs of residency must list the same address, and they must match the address shown on the student records in the Enrollment Services Office. Documents must be submitted by the application deadline date. If seats are limited and students are otherwise equally qualified, preference will be given to in-district students.
      • In the event that one or more of the students who are notified of being accepted into the VMTP indicate that they do not intend to accept the seat or wish to defer, the vacancy will be filled by remaining applicants based on the rank score earned.
      • In the event that there are insufficient qualified candidates who have applied by June 1st, there will be a special provisions program. Under this program, students can make application and complete all of the prerequisites until the end of the summer semester. Should space remain in the next class after exhausting the special provisions program, any late qualified applicants will be reviewed by the Program Director with the intention of filling the space for the next class.
      • If a student is not admitted to the program for the fall of that year, a student would have to resubmit their application to be considered for the following academic year. All prerequisites previously completed are accepted in subsequent application years.
    • Admission criteria is subject to change. It is the applicant's responsibility to review the criteria on a regular basis.

    Students will be notified via JJC Student Email of their acceptance into the program and a JJC email account will be used for notification. Acceptance emails are typically sent mid-June.

    Upon acceptance into the VMTP all students are required to attend a group orientation in June of the year in which they are accepted. Below is some information about the orientation:

    1. The group orientation will take at least two hours. An individual orientation may be scheduled if the group orientation cannot be attended.
    2. Students will be given their fall semester schedule. Students will only be registered for classes after completing the orientation.
    3. Students will learn about the program's expectations, and rabies vaccination requirements.

  • Fail/Withdrawal and Appeals Policies

    1. A student who withdraws failing or fails a VMTP course may repeat that course one time only. If the student is unsuccessful more than once during the VMTP the student has a right to appeal - see appeal process. In the case of appeal, the student may continue in the program pending the outcome of the appeal. Appeal denial will result in immediate dismissal from the VMTP.
    2. Students who withdraw from any required course in the VMTP are automatically withdrawn from the VMTP program. To officially drop or withdraw from a course, the student must notify the Office of Registration in writing by completing the add/drop form. Failure to officially withdraw by the drop date will result in a failing grade(s). Drop dates for each course vary and are stated on the student's class schedule which can be found under e-Resources on JJC's web site.
    3. Students who breach the VMTP Handbook, the Student Code of Conduct, the Academic Honor Code, will be immediately suspended pending investigation. The VMTP handbook is given to students after orientation.
    4. Students who wish to withdraw temporarily from the program for a medical, pregnancy, or parenting reason should meet with the Dean of Students to discuss options.
    5. Not all courses are offered every semester. When a student fails a VMTP sequential course (VET 110, VET 117, VET 118, VET 128, VET 140), that course must be successfully completed before being enrolled in the next course in the sequence. If not a sequential course, the student may continue in the program accordingly. Acceptance into the course, and the following sequence of courses, depends on class offering and available seats.
    6. Exceptions will only be made for who withdraw while passing and request to postpone for a semester or longer (e.g., due to medical, financial hardships, etc.) before continuing in the VMTP sequence will be allowed to do so, space permitting, as long as the absence is less than two calendar years. (See "Time Limits on Readmission" section below). Students returning must complete the current VTMP curriculum if there have been changes.
    7. Students withdrawn for nonacademic reasons may be reinstated following the procedures under the VMTP Reinstatement Procedure below.
    8. Readmission is not guaranteed.
    9. A student who is denied readmission for reasons other than seat availability has the right to appeal for readmission in writing to the Veterinary Medical Technology Admissions Appeal Committee. All decisions made by the Veterinary Medical Technology Admissions Appeal Committee are final. This committee consists of the Dean of Nursing, Health & Public Services Department Chair, the VMTP Program Director and VMTP faculty.


    Time Limits on Readmission:
    1. Students seeking readmission to the program, following a time lapse of more than two calendar years, but less than 3 calendar years, will be required to demonstrate proficiency via tests or lab skill assessment prior to readmission into subsequent courses of study.
    2. A student seeking readmission, who has been out of the program for more than three calendar years, must start from the beginning of the program unless approved by the VMTP Director for extenuating circumstances (i.e. active military duty). In this event, the requirements in this section still apply.
    3. In the event of major course changes, a student will be required to start from the beginning of the Veterinary Medical Technology sequence, regardless of time lapse. Each case will be evaluated on an individual basis. The Dean will make the decision on what constitutes a major change.
    4. Upon readmission students must pay current College and VTMP tuition and fees regardless of prior tuition and fees paid.


    Appeal Process:

    The JJC VMTP has an appeal process for vet tech students appealing to get back into the VMTP. The appeals process is as follows:

    1. The student must notify the Program Director in writing that an appeal is being requested. The appeal request must be completed within 1 year of the last failure.
    2. The Secretary of the VMTP will provide the student with the appropriate paperwork and schedule an appointment with the Appeals Committee.
    3. The Appeals Committee will be comprised of JJC faculty. A reasonable attempt will be made to include faculty from the VMTP and from other departments at the college.
    4. The committee will comprised of an odd number of faculty in the case of a vote.
    5. The Appeals Committee will meet at least once per semester at a time designated by the Program Director.
    6. The Appeals Committee will determine the conditions, if any, under which the student can continue in the program.
    7. The student will be notified of the decision in writing within 5 business days.
    8. The decision by the Appeals Committee is final.
    9. An appeal granted or denied constitutes the final opportunity for a student to complete the VMTP. If a student is unsuccessful in any vet tech course following an appeal, there is no other option for readmission.

  • Legal Limits for License

    Graduates of an accredited program are eligible to take the National Veterinary Technician board examination.

    Applicants should be aware that there are legal limitations for veterinary technician licensure. Candidates who successfully complete this examination may or may not be issued a license to practice veterinary technology in Illinois. The Division of Professional Regulation of the IDFPR reviews all applications. The following are reasons that may serve as a denial of licensure, but are not intended to be all-inclusive:

    • Denied a license permit or privilege of taking an examination by any licensing authority or had a license encumbered in any way.
    • Been convicted of a criminal offense in any state or federal court.
    • A physical impairment or disability that could interfere with Veterinary Medical Technology.
    • An addiction to, or excessive use of alcohol, narcotics or habit-forming drugs.
    • Suffered from, been diagnosed as having or have been treated for any disease or condition regarded as chronic, whether physical, emotional or mental.

    Potential applicants with questions regarding veterinary technician licensure may wish to contact the IDFPR at 1-800-560-6420 or visit the IDFPR Veterinarian Professionals page.

  • Support Services

    Support services are available to JJC students. These include:

    • Advising of prospective and current students, please call (815) 280-2746.
    • The Academic Skills center provides tutoring, quiz bank, test taking skills sessions, and study skills help. Assistance with reading, writing, and note taking are also available here. For information please call (815) 280-2284.
    • Students may apply for financial aid assistance through the Office of Financial Aid and Veteran Services. For information please call (815) 280-2528.
    • The College provides Special Needs Services through the Disability Services. For information, call (815) 280-2230 or 280-2220. It is important to notify the Disability Services prior to the start of the semester in which you enroll at JJC.
    • The office of Career Services can assist students with locating part-time employment while enrolled, career decision-making assistance, and job placement at the time of graduation. For information please call (815) 280-2756.

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