To help meet the country’s growing demand for veterinary technicians, the University of Missouri has partnered with Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Missouri, to create a new transfer agreement for veterinary technology students.
The ‘two plus two’ agreement allows undergraduate students who earn a two-year associate’s degree in veterinary technology at Jefferson College to be automatically admitted as juniors at MU to pursue a newly created bachelor’s degree in veterinary technology, which can expand their future employment opportunities and improve their upward mobility.
“Demand for veterinary technicians has grown in recent years, and we are proud to provide new educational opportunities that can keep vet techs engaged and remaining in the profession long term,” said Cindy Cravens, director of the Bachelor of Science in Veterinary Technology (BSVT) program at MU. “Our graduates will serve Missourians in both rural and urban parts of the state, helping fill the unmet needs in our state’s workforce.”
Veterinary technicians assist veterinarians in caring for both domestic companion animals and large farm animals, aiding with surgeries, farm calls, blood tests and routine care.
“Missouri is an agriculture state, and we are proud of the support we have received from state legislators and the Missouri Farm Bureau,” said Dena McCaffrey, president of Jefferson College. “This is an example of public universities in Missouri supporting education that encourages workforce development opportunities in a growing field.”
The agreement between the universities, signed in September, allows veterinary technology students at Jefferson College who complete the two-year associate degree program this spring to be eligible to enroll at MU as juniors in Fall 2022. In addition to current and incoming Jefferson College students, the agreement also applies to graduates of Jefferson College’s two-year veterinary technology program dating back to 1978, the year the college earned their American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accreditation.
“As our population continues to grow, there has been an increased demand for food production, and therefore a greater need for more veterinarian technicians to help take care of farm animals,” said Christopher DeGeare, vice president of instruction at Jefferson College. “Also, there has been an increase in the adoption of companion animals since the COVID-19 pandemic began, resulting in more veterinarian appointments. So, this partnership will help meet the growing demand for veterinarian technicians.”
In addition to veterinary technology, MU and Jefferson College have ‘two plus two’ transfer agreements with more than 15 other degree programs, including biology, business, communications, engineering, economics, education, health sciences, journalism, nursing and political science. The complete list can be found here.