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AgriLife Extension offers veterinary medicine program to Panhandle area youth


Texas A&M AgriLife Extension's Potter County 4-H and Youth Development program is conducting a program to help youth begin a career in veterinary medicine, according to Brandon Boughen, AgriLife Extension agriculture and natural resources agent in Potter County.

An orientation workshop to introduce the program will be held at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 28 at the AgriLife Extension office for Potter County, 3301 E. 10th Ave. in Amarillo. The meeting is open to area youth ages eight to 16 years, Boughen said.

Students who sign up for the program will be committed to a five-year study course and apprenticeship that is career-oriented and job-trained, which Boughen said means throughout the program they will work directly toward a career in veterinary medicine.

While completing the curriculum of 100 lessons and 50 activities, students will focus on the major careers of veterinary medicine: veterinary assistant, veterinary technician and veterinarian, he said.

The classes are geared to the grade level of the students, Boughen said. High school students will have the opportunity to accelerate the time frame of the curriculum to two, three or four years.

The students will be placed in a setting to work under the supervision of veterinarians and are expected to complete hours of observation and a minimum of 500 hours of clinical skills on the job, usually in the veterinary clinic, he said.

Students who successfully complete the study course and apprenticeship of clinical skill hours will receive a certificate of completion and the classification as a veterinary assistant, Boughen said.

The students will be qualified to apply for certification by examination as a certified veterinary assistant through the Texas Veterinary Medical Association, he said. Those planning to become a veterinary technician or a veterinarian will be counseled to pursue the required college degree programs.

Boughen said there is no charge for current 4-H members. If a student is not a member, they will need to join either in their home county or in Potter County and purchase the required program curriculum book for $85.

To RSVP for attendance or more information, contact Boughen at 806-373-0713.

Date: 1/28/2013


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