How to Choose a Veterinary School

The Vetducator image of vet school debt and satisfaction with value.

It’s the culmination of your lifelong dream- you are finally applying to vet school!  Congratulations! It is an exciting and scary time. You are starting to make substantial decisions which will affect your life and career.  Some people may fret over where to apply to vet school. Fortunately, it’s a surprisingly simple decision-making matrix.

Is there a state school where you live? If yes, apply there. You do not want to pay more for your educational than absolutely necessary. Your in-state school is probably the least expensive option.

If there is not a state school, does your state participate in cooperative program with another vet school, such as Delaware with Georgia or WICHE (Western Interstate Commission for Higher education) with several western schools?  If yes, apply to the associated school.

Is there something odd about your application that may make it difficult to get into your state school? If yes, you may apply to out-of-state schools, private schools, and overseas schools. Realize that the tremendous financial cost of these options may be a monkey on your back for most of your life.

That’s it.  There’s no consideration of ranking.  You know what they call the person who graduated from the bottom-ranked school in the country?  “Doctor.” You can get a good education anywhere and you can get a bad education anywhere- it is up to the individual student.  This isn’t law or politics. Your employer will not care from where you graduated. Keep your costs down. Graduate debt-free if possible.  Then enjoy your full, free life.

4 comments on “How to Choose a Veterinary School

  1. -

    What if your IS school is a new program with provisional accreditation that has not graduated its first class, has no teaching hospital on campus, as well as no summer breaks for internships? My second alternative was a much more traditional prestigious school with a campus hospital but it was roughly an extra 70-80k (not including interest)

    • - Post author

      Great question! If you graduate from a school with provisional accreditation, you are A-OK. New schools CAN’T get full accreditation until they graduate their first class. Many schools have distributive models (Lincoln Memorial, Calgary) and are successful, so not having a teaching hospital isn’t the end of the world. Summer breaks aren’t really necessary or helpful except as they allow you to make money to keep your loans down. Personally, I would take the new IS school and the attendant lower debt amount.

  2. -

    Thank you! This makes me feel much better about my decision about my program. I appreciate your response – and that I will be saving almost 90k by doing this as well!

    • - Post author

      Glad it’s helpful, thanks for asking! I think the 90k savings is pretty great, good job keeping an eye on the bottom line!

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