Many people want to work with animals and many young people have dreams of being a vet. If you are rejected by veterinary school or simply know that you cannot fulfill the educational requirements, these ideas of alternative animal careers may help…

What to Do If You Get Rejected to Veterinary School

Getting into veterinary school is hard. There are greater numbers of people who aspire to be veterinarians than there are spaces available for them to study in veterinary school. So if you got rejected by your first choice of veterinary schools — or by all the veterinary schools you applied to — don’t despair. A rejection does not mean that your hopes of having a fantastic career are over. There are bunches of other interesting jobs available for people who want to work with animals. Consider the following 4 ideas for what to do if you get rejected to veterinary school:


1.   Improve Your Veterinary School Application and Try Again

If you truly have your heart set on becoming a veterinarian, do not take no for an answer. Analyze the veterinary school applications you submitted to figure out what might have held you back from getting accepted. Then work harder at meeting your goal of getting accepted to veterinary school. Here’s a list of things you can do to improve your veterinary school application. When you’re able to submit a stronger application, re-apply.

Or consider some other possibilities for jobs that will allow you to work with animals without all the work of going to vet school. If you haven’t already tried working as a veterinarian’s assistant, that is one possibility for a next step you could take. Or…


2. Become an Animal Trainer

Animals need to be trained for bunches of different reasons. Dogs need obedience training. Disabled people need service dogs to help them live as independently as their circumstances allow. Hollywood movie producers need animals to be trained as part of their storytelling efforts on screen. Police forces and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) need dogs that can sniff out narcotics and explosives. The military needs trained animals for a variety of purposes, too. All that training requires patient, talented trainers to make it happen — which is where you’ll come in if you decide to become an animal trainer.

In the USA, animal trainer positions might require either a high school diploma or a bachelor’s degree, depending on the job. In Australia, a training certificate is usually required if you want to qualify for most animal trainer positions.

Cat behaviour problem
Training animals is a career possibility

3. Become a Zookeeper

Zookeepers are responsible for attending to animals’ dietary needs. They make sure the animals have a clean environment and stay safe and healthy. Some also handle the animals during public appearances or give talks to the public on behalf of the zoo they work for.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that most zoos in the USA require their animal handlers to have at least a bachelor’s degree in a major such as animal science, biology or a similar field. You probably easily fulfill this requirement if you applied to veterinary school. Zookeepers in Australia must obtain specialized training, typically a certificate III in captive animals.

4. Choose a Career as a Wildlife Biologist

Wildlife biologists often engage in scientific research that can help to preserve endangered species, prevent and control animal diseases, or stop the spread of invasive, non-native species. They must be skilled scientists who are adept at conducting research and presenting their discoveries.

In the USA, federal and state governments hire wildlife biologists to study and manage animal populations for a variety of purposes. A bachelor’s degree will most likely be sufficient for finding an entry-level job as a wildlife biologist; however, you’ll probably want to earn your master’s degree or even your PhD if this is a career you’re serious about.

These are 4 of the best options you can try after being rejected to veterinary school; but keep in mind these are not your only options. Hopefully one of these ideas will work for you, but if not, make your own list of goals and alternative ideas to begin working towards. Your dream career awaits you — and you can enjoy success at it, whether or not you will be able to successfully complete veterinary school in the future.

About the author:
Andrej Kovacevic is a dedicated writer and a digital evangelist. You can find him blogging at his tech blog or one of the many publications he writes for.

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