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Veterinary Technology

Veterinary Technology Overview

Our program draws students from all around the country. Students receive the best training possible and graduates have had 98 percent pass rate on the national board examination for 20+ years.

Imagine practicing as a veterinary technologist, a highly educated and skilled member of the animal health care team. Today's veterinary technologists are licensed professionals who team with veterinarians to offer state-of-the-art veterinary care. The Mercy College Veterinary Technology Program is fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (AVMA CVTEA) and leads to a four-year Bachelor of Science degree and the title, veterinary technologist.

Veterinary Technology Fast Facts

  • Named one of Top Ten Best Value Schools
  • Externships at top veterinary practices, ultra-sophisticated, multi-specialty centers and zoos
  • Consistent demand for Mercy Veterinary Technology Program graduates
Best Vet Tech school seal

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of student is well suited for the program?

The curriculum is academically rigorous and scientifically oriented. It is designed for the motivated learner who can successfully pursue an intense educational experience. The student must possess a strong ability to focus and a serious interest in a career in veterinary medicine. Along with solid academic skills, the student must have compassion for animals, empathy and concern for people, and the capacity to work cooperatively and productively with others.

What is a Veterinary Technician/Technologist?

Veterinary Technicians are graduates of two-year veterinary technician schools and earn Associate degrees. Veterinary Technologists are graduates of AVMA-approved, four-year veterinary technology schools and earn a Bachelor of Science degree in veterinary technology. Both are educated to be the veterinarian's nurse, laboratory technician, radiography technician, anesthetist, surgical nurse and client educator. Veterinary technologists often achieve more lucrative careers in veterinary medicine, assuming supervisory and management positions in veterinary facilities and biomedical research institutions.

How long does earning a degree take?

Full-time students can complete the 120-credit degree program in four years.

Are department faculty available for academic advising?

Yes, faculty are available to help students with questions about what courses to take, the sequencing of courses and career opportunities, including externships and cooperative education.

When can I apply to the Veterinary Technology Program?

Satisfactory completion of VETC 101 Introduction to Veterinary Science, BIOL 160 General Biology I, BIOL 160A General Biology I Laboratory with a grade of C+ or better, and ENGL 111 Written English and Literary Studies I and Math 116 College Algebra with a grade of B or better. All courses that are required for admission into the Veterinary Technology program may not be repeated more than once. Please note that to maintain eligibility for admission into and to continue in the Program students must earn a minimum letter grade of C or better in all veterinary technology and natural science courses, and a minimum grade of B or better in ENGL 111 Written English and Literary Studies I and MATH 116 College Algebra. Students must maintain a 2.75 cumulative index in veterinary technology courses in order to be admitted into clinical courses VETC 340, VETC 341, VETC 350, VETC 350A, VETC 360, VETC 375, VETC 495, and VETC 496.

Can I attend the Veterinary Technology program part-time?

Yes. You can take as little as one course per semester.

How Is Mercy's program unique?

The four-year Veterinary Technology Program at Mercy College is one of the few programs nationwide to offer a Bachelor of Science degree. Graduates often qualify for supervisory and management positions that favor the more advanced education provided by a Bachelor's degree. The first two years are devoted to intense academic coursework and the second two years provide extensive clinical experience, including two full-semester externships. This considerable amount of clinical training, combined with in-depth scientific and medical knowledge, offers you superior skills and competence. As a result, graduates of Mercy's Veterinary Technology Program have achieved a 98% passing rate on the VTNE for over 20 years. The program also is unique in offering qualified students the opportunity to complete advanced externships in specialties such as surgical nursing and anesthesia; emergency and critical care nursing; dentistry; ophthalmology; small animal internal medicine; exotic animal medicine; oncology; and zoo animal medicine and surgery.

Program Outcomes

  • Evince the tenets of professional behavior and communication, ethical value and culture sensitivity.

  • Explain Federal and State regulation and accepted human resource practices as they relate to the ethical and legal management of a veterinary facility.

  • Perform common clinical tests as required by the Mercy College Veterinary Technology Program Essential Skills List, and explain their clinical significance. 

  • Explain disease processes underlying common exotic and small animal diseases and evaluate their clinical implications relative to optimizing treatment.

  • Properly perform small, large and exotic animal nursing skills at an entry level. 

  • Demonstrate fundamental knowledge of veterinary anesthesia and evaluate anesthetic and analgesic protocols.

  • Explain the role of the veterinary technologist in animal research facilities, including ethical and humane responsibilities, and demonstrate appropriate handling of research animals. 

  • Perform clinical externships, including satisfactory accomplishment of all applicable essential skills.

  • Demonstrate critical thinking skills as they pertain to decision-making and problem-solving.

Program Details & Curriculum


General Education Requirements*: 60 Credits

Major Concentration: Veterinary Technology: 58 Credits

Veterinary Technology Elective: 2 Credits

Total: 120 Credits


The program's primary objective is to provide graduates with a superior education combined with the technical skills they need to succeed as veterinary technologists. This is a comprehensive program that emphasizes development of the critical thinking, in-depth knowledge and technical skills needed for professional success. Affiliations with ultra-sophisticated, multi-specialty practices provide cutting-edge instruction by nationally renowned experts both on- and off-campus.

Program graduates qualify to take the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE), the credentialing examination that is available only to graduates of AVMA-accredited veterinary technology schools and is required for licensure in New York State.

Graduates of Mercy's Veterinary Technology Program have achieved a 98% passing rate on the VTNE for 20+ years.


Program Admission Criteria

Admission to the Veterinary Technology Program is a competitive, multi-step process. Students must first be admitted to Mercy College. Students who meet the following criteria will be admitted as undecided-veterinary technology majors (VTPR):


  • Overall high school GPA 85% or higher
  • Minimum of two years of high school Math with 85% (B) average or higher
  • Minimum of two years high school English with 85% (B) average or higher 
  • Minimum of two years high school Laboratory Science with 85% (B) average or higher


  • High school rank in upper third of class
  • More than two years high school Math with one year of algebra
  • More than two years high school English
  • More than two years high school Laboratory Science; preference for one year each in biology and chemistry

Students that do not meet the high school assessment criteria will be required to take additional courses. Students who meet the high school criteria will follow the sequence below for their first year:

First Semester - 16 credits

  • Critical Inquiry - CINQ 101
  • Written English & Literary Studies I - ENGL 111
  • College Algebra - MATH 116
  • General Biology I Lecture and Lab - BIOL 160/160A
  • Oral Communications - SPCM 110

Second Semester - 14 credits

  • Introduction to Veterinary Science - VETC 101
  • General Biology II Lecture & Lab - BIOL 161/161A
  • General Chemistry I Lecture & Lab - CHEM 160/160A
  • Written English & Literary Studies II - ENGL 112

To progress to the veterinary technology courses as veterinary technology majors (VTNS), students must complete the first year with the following performance:

  • Minimal overall GPA of first year 2.75
  • MATH 116 minimum grade of B
  • ENGL 111 minimum grade of B
  • BIOL 160/160A minimum grade of C+
  • VETC 101 minimum grade of C

Students who meet the above criteria will be required to write an essay to demonstrate competence in written English and understanding of the profession of veterinary technology.

Major Concentration Standards

  1. Students must earn a minimum letter grade of C or better in all veterinary technology courses, a grade of C+ or better in BIOL 160/160A General Biology I Lecture/Laboratory, a minimum grade of C in all natural science courses, and a minum grade of B or better in ENGL 111 Written English and Literary Studies I and MATH 116 College Algebra.
  2. Students must maintain a 2.75 cumulative index in veterinary technology courses in order to be admitted into clinical courses VETC 340, VETC 341, VETC 350, VETC 350A, VETC 360, VETC 375, VETC 495, and VETC 496. A minimum GPA of 2.75 is also required for graduation from the Veterinary Technology Program. 
  3. Students may not repeat a course required in the curriculum more than once. Two withdrawals from a course are equivalent to one full completion of that course.  
  4. Any student who earns a grade less than the required minimum grade in a course required in the curriculum must repeat the course the next semester it is offered at Mercy College in order to progress to any course for which it is a Prerequisite.
  5. Any student who receives less than the required minimum grade in a course required in the curriculum more than once will automatically be dismissed from the Program.
  6. For any veterinary technology lecture course that has a laboratory course as a corequisite, both the lecture and laboratory courses must be taken concurrently. In the event that a student must withdraw from the lecture course, the student must also withdraw from the corequisite laboratory course. Students who wish to take the lecture or laboratory course alone will require program director authorization and may be required to participate in relevant labs or audit relevant lecture topics.
  7. With the exception of VETC 375 Principles of Large Animal Medicine, Veterinary Technology courses within the Veterinary Technology curriculum are not offered in the summer semester.
  8. Students who receive an unsatisfactory evaluation in any category, including but not limited to professional and ethical behavior, or required skill in clinical courses VETC 340, VETC 341, VETC 350, VETC 350A, VETC 360, VETC 375, VETC 495, or VETC 496, or who are dismissed from any externship site, will receive an “F” in the course and will have their records reviewed by the Veterinary Technology Faculty. The faculty will determine if the student will be given the opportunity to repeat the experience in a future semester, and/or be placed on probation, or be dismissed by the Program.
  9. If a student is dismissed from any externship site because of an inability to demonstrate content knowledge, the faculty may require the student to pass a competency exam and either retake or audit the course covering the content prior to reassignment to an externship site.
  10. Any student that has been dismissed from the Veterinary Technology Program is not eligible to reapply to the Veterinary Technology Program.

Technical Standards

Minimal Technical Standards

The following technical standards, which serve to protect the student and patient and are deemed essential for performance as a competent veterinary technologist, are required for admission, continuation and graduation from the Mercy College Veterinary Technology Program:

Essential Requirements

  1. Capable of frequently lifting and/or carrying up to 50 pounds from floor to waist level.
  2. Ability to tolerate walking and standing for sustained periods of time.
  3. Capable of handling, positioning and restraining live animals.
  4. Capable of using hands and arms to handle, install, position and move materials.
  5. Auditory ability sufficient to monitor and assess health needs, including auscultatory sounds, alarms, animals vocalizations, cries for help and warning sounds from animals and humans. Ability to perceive and understand the natural or amplified human voice when lips, facial expressions and/or other visual clues are not able to be seen.
  6. Tactile ability sufficient for physical assessment and to perform nursing duties.
  7. Eyesight capable of viewing small visual images and reading instrumentation.
  8. Amenable to learning the safe handling and restraint of all Program-required species of domestic and exotic animals without a level of fear that interferes with satisfactory performance.
  9. Capacities to read, hear, understand and quickly execute complex verbal and written instructions given in English.
  10. Willingness to assist with or perform a wide variety of medical, surgical and diagnostic procedures in the veterinary setting, including humane euthanasia.
  11. Ability to act in a professional and ethical manner.
  12. Ability to responds promptly and appropriately in emergency situations.
  13. Ability to speak English and be understood by others who speak English.
  14. Ability to handle and/or be exposed to a wide variety of animal species and their environments without adverse medical consequences (e.g., allergic reaction)

Veterinary Technology Student Essential Skills

Mercy's program requires that students successfully acquire specified, essential skills in order to complete the Veterinary Technology Program. A link to these skills may be found here.

VTNE Pass Rates

VTNE Pass Rates

  July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2020
Number of first-time candidates that have taken the VTNE 86
Three-year VTNE pass percentage 98.8%



The Veterinary Technology Program is accredited by the Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA) of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) located in Schaumburg, Illinois. 

Graduates of the Mercy College Veterinary Technology Program are eligible to sit for the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB). Successful completion of this examination is required for licensure as a veterinary technician by the New York State Education Department (NYSED). Licensure information can be found at

NOTE: A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to attain state licensure.