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Haverford College

Pre-Health Advising

Veterinary Medicine

Most Haverford classes contain a small number of students interested in going to veterinary school. Haverford's rigorous science program, with its abundant opportunities for students to perform independent research, provides an excellent foundation for students who choose to pursue veterinary medicine as a career. If you are interested in Veterinary Medicine, please contact Abby Schutzman, VMD to make an appointment.

Requirements for students applying to vet school include the following:

  • Course Requirements:
    • Most veterinary schools require completion of the following courses:
      • Biology with lab (one year)
      • General Chemistry with lab (one year)
      • Organic Chemistry with lab (one year)
      • Physics with lab (one year)
      • Biochemistry
      • Calculus/Statistics
      • English Composition
    • Many veterinary schools have additional required courses, such as Microbiology, Genetics, and Nutrition.
    • While most pre-vet students major in biology or chemistry, it is possible, with careful planning, to pursue another major and still complete all required pre-vet courses.
  • Veterinary experience/Animal experience: Vet schools expect applicants to have significant veterinary experience (work supervised by a health professional) and are also interested in applicants’ animal experience (work done with animals but not supervised by a health professional). This experience can be paid or volunteer, and ideally it includes work with different types of animals.
  • GRE: Most vet school require that applicants compete the GRE test.
  • Letters of recommendation: Most vet schools require three letters of recommendation, including one from a veterinarian.
  • Additional detailed information about requirements for pre-vet students can be found at aavmc.org.

It is never too soon to begin preparing to apply to vet school. During high school and college, students should focus on maintaining a high GPA and gaining as much experience as possible with animals. Most vet school applications must be completed by October of the applicant’s senior year of college.

A veterinary degree is extremely versatile, and graduates of veterinary school are qualified to work in a variety of fields. Veterinarians are needed for the medical care of all types of animals, including companion animals, farm/production animals, zoo animals, and wildlife. There are also many veterinary jobs that do not include daily hands-on work with animals, including public health work and research. Students interested in the less traditional areas of veterinary medicine generally are in high demand and are encouraged to seek as much experience as possible in their area of interest before and during vet school.

Students looking for more information about veterinary school and the application process are encouraged to explore aavmc.org (The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges website) and vmcas.org (The Veterinary Medical College Application Service website).