Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.)

The practice of veterinary medicine not only deals with pets, livestock and working animals, veterinarians are also at the forefront of protecting the public’s health and welfare.  Veterinarians are trained to diagnose medical conditions, perform surgery on sick and injured animals, and prescribe and administer medicines and drugs.  They also work to keep the nation’s food supply safe, prevent the spread of diseases and conduct research to ensure animals are kept healthy and limit and ultimately prevent the spread of salmonella, e-coli or other food borne pathogens.  

Although 80% of veterinarians are in private practice, the U. S Department of Agriculture is the largest employer of veterinarians in the United States employing approximately 1,300 civilian veterinarians.  Veterinary school graduates have a multitude of career options where they can effectively apply their Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degrees. 

Below is a sample list of veterinary career options:

  • Private Practice
  • Corporate Veterinary Medicine
  • The Federal Government
  • Research
  • Teaching
  • Public Health
  • Food Supply Medicine
  • Global Veterinary Medicine
  • Public Policy
  • Shelter Medicine

Medical Exposure
Veterinary school admissions committees consider applicants with work experience in the veterinary field to be highly desirable candidates.  Applicants are encouraged to explore the veterinary field either by employment or in a volunteer capacity by shadowing, observing, interning, or working with a practicing veterinarian.  Most competitive veterinary schools require a minimum number of veterinary experience hours.  It is highly recommended to research each veterinary schools admissions criterion to see if specific number of veterinary experience hours is a requirement.  The primary objective is to ensure that you are familiar with the scope of the profession and to assure the admissions committee that you are making an informed decision. 

Application Information
Applications for veterinary school are submitted online through Veterinary Medical College Application Service (VMCAS), the only centralized application service for students applying to veterinary school.  VMCAS offers students a convenient way to research and apply to multiple veterinary schools with a single online application.  Please refer to the VMCAS website for a complete list of participating veterinary schools.  The GRE is required for admission into veterinary school and students should apply at the earliest possible date, which varies by school.  Most veterinary schools require a supplemental application in addition to the VMCAS application and the supplemental application can be found on the veterinary school’s website.  Please note that your application for admission to most veterinary schools will not be complete until they receive BOTH the VMCAS and supplemental application.


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