ASHEBORO (Aug. 8, 2019)
Not many 19-year-olds land their dream job, but Asheboro’s Michelle Lewis is right where she wants to be — caring for animals.
Lewis passed her Certified Veterinary Assistant Level 1 (CVA 1) exam in April — the first student from Randolph Community College’s new Vet Assistant program to do so. Now in its second year, the hybrid program’s classes begin Aug. 20.
“I’ve always had animals,” said Lewis, who grew up on a farm. “I’ve always wanted to go into the veterinary field. I saw this opportunity open up, and saw it was a one-year program.”
|Michelle Lewis of Asheboro is the first Randolph Community College student to pass the Certified Veterinary Assistant Level 1 exam.|
Lewis, whose tuition for two of the three courses and book were paid for by the Project Skill-Up grant, said the classes were challenging, but her background with horses and cows helped. She also said she preferred the in-person work to the online classes, but was glad she was able to earn her certification in a year.
Now, the Fayetteville Street Christian School graduate is working at the Eastern Randolph Veterinary Clinic in Ramseur. She helps the doctor in any way whether it be assisting in surgery, taking a shift at the front desk, getting materials ready for procedures, or holding the animals while the other vet techs administer shots.
When she isn’t helping out smaller animals at work, Lewis is a horse trainer and a riding lesson instructor at home — so she is able to have the best of both worlds.
“I really love what I do,” Lewis said. “I have a passion for it. It’s never boring — it’s always different with different opportunities.”
RCC’s Vet Assistant Certification program prepares students to sit for the CVA 1 exam through the Texas Veterinary Medical Association. The program consists of two, 120-hour hybrid classes, “Vet Assistant I” and “Vet Assistant II,” with a “Work-Based Learning” option. The program introduces students to the animal science industry, animal behavior, animal anatomy, reproduction, nutrition, genetics, social issues, current events, and animal management for livestock, poultry, equine, and companion animals. The course is designed to prepare students for careers in production, processing, and distribution of livestock or to pursue a career in the veterinary or applied science fields.
“Vet Assistant I” (#69118) is from 5:30-8:30 p.m. and online, Tuesdays and Thursdays, Aug. 20-Dec. 3, in room 101 of the Building Trades Center on the Asheboro Campus. “Vet Assistant II” (#70534) is from 5:30-8:30 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursday, Jan. 21-April 30, at the same location. “Work-Based Learning” (#70538) takes place from Jan. 21-April 30 with the work schedule and location determined by the employer and the student.
All three courses cost $180.55. There is a required book, “Veterinary Assisting Fundamentals & Applications, 1st Edition,” which can be purchased through the Campus Store for approximately $155.
For more information and to register, call RCC at 336-633-0268.