Portland, Ore.—October 2, 2013—Banfield Pet Hospital®, the world’s largest veterinary practice, and Penn Foster, a leader in career-focused education, today announced their partnership to create affordable programs for becoming a Credentialed Veterinary Technician (CVT). Through this partnership, any Banfield associate can enroll in Penn Foster’s veterinary technician degree program at a discounted rate to help reach their career goal of becoming a CVT.
Banfield is committed to increasing the number of CVTs throughout the profession and is working to support demand for this growing career in a variety of ways. The practice is also piloting a CVT Development Program to pay a percentage of Penn Foster’s tuition for a number of veterinary assistants currently working in its hospitals. Banfield intends to expand this program and open it to more associates in 2014, as part of its ongoing commitment to increase the number of veterinary technicians working in the profession.
“Banfield believes in supporting the learning and development of our associates and we know that CVTs are essential to our practice, as well as the profession,” said Jeffrey Klausner, DVM, senior vice president and chief medical officer for Banfield Pet Hospital. “CVTs are best positioned to assist doctors in delivering high-quality medicine, caring for more pets and providing an exceptional client experience. We hope this partnership will help more veterinary professionals continue their education and professional development toward becoming a veterinary technician.”
Penn Foster’s online learning program has full accreditation with the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and is tailored for working adults. It consists of four semesters, designed to give students skills they will use in the field as veterinary technicians. The program includes a hands-on practicum component where students work in a full-service hospital for 450 hours to enhance the skills learned in their academic courses. As part of the partnership, and Banfield’s commitment to meet the growing demand in this field, non-Banfield students can obtain required practical experience in participating Banfield hospitals. Students also receive extensive mentoring and guidance from licensed Banfield veterinary professionals while continuing their education.
A DEMAND FOR CVTs
Veterinary technicians will continue to play an important role in Banfield Pet Hospital locations, as they create a better client experience, provide increased doctor satisfaction and aid in overall hospital efficiency. CVTs are in high demand and the need continues to grow. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the veterinary technician profession is expected to increase by 52 percent between 2010 and 2020, much faster than average growth rate.
These professionals play a vital role in caring for pets by working directly with veterinarians and pet owners and perform support tasks such as: cleaning teeth, inserting IVs, giving medications, taking radiographs and assisting with surgery.
“Through this strategic partnership, our students will have access to the practical experience they need to excel in the growing veterinary technician field,” said Dr. Jim Hurrell, Director of the Penn Foster Veterinary Academy. “Our affordable program, combined with Banfield’s incredible network of hospitals, will give our students the opportunity to gain the confidence and independence that comes with working in the field. We look forward to working with Banfield to educate the next generation of CVTs.”
Penn Foster currently has 8,000 students enrolled in their veterinary academy—of those students, more than 400 are Banfield associates.
About Banfield Pet Hospital®
Founded in Portland, Ore., in 1955, Banfield is the largest general veterinary practice in the world. In 2007, Banfield joined the Mars, Inc. family of businesses, and today it is more than 830 hospitals strong in neighborhoods across the United States. More than 2,600 veterinarians at Banfield are committed to giving pets the highest quality of veterinary care. Banfield hospitals offer a full range of comprehensive medical services, computerized medical records, preventive care plans for pets and extended operating hours. Banfield Pet Hospital helps extend the lives of millions of pets each year through Optimum Wellness Plans®. For journalists seeking more information, visit banfield.com or contact the Media Hotline at 888-355-0595.
About Penn Foster
Founded in 1890, Penn Foster has been a leader in career-focused distance and blended learning for more than 100 years. Since its inception, more than 13 million people have enrolled in its high school, career school and college to learn advanced skills, further their education and better position them for life success. Today, Penn Foster graduates 25,000 students yearly and enrolls more than 100,000 new students each year in programs designed to address the skills gap in middle skilled careers. Penn Foster’s high-quality, affordable distance education allows students the flexibility to complete programs around their schedules with 24/7 access to a supportive online community of students and faculty. For more information, visit www.pennfoster.edu.