Potential Career Paths

According to AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association), there are more than 86,000 veterinarians actively practicing in the United States.

The Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences program prepares you for:

Career Paths after four years:

  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Biothechnology
  • Government agencies/Public health
  • Animal food industry
  • University laboratories
  • Private research laboratories

Professional schools:

  • Veterinary medicine
  • Human medicine
  • Graduate studies in biomedical sciences

Career paths within veterinary medicine include but not limited to:

Private practice

Veterinarians in private practice may choose to limit their practice either by species or by disciplines. Approximately 75% of veterinarians in private practice choose to work with companion animals. Others may limit their practice to food producing animals or to various aspects of the equine industry. Most new graduates begin their career as associates in established practices due to the need for continues mentoring during the early phases of their career and the high cost of equipment and facilities in establishing a new practice.

Public practice

Working for the government is lesser known career path. There is a great demand for veterinarians to work in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FISIS) employs veterinarians to ensure safe food supply. FSIS veterinarians take measures to prevent the introduction of foreign disease outbreaks into the U.S. They inspect animals brought to the U.S. from foreign countries. They also work with veterinarians and other public health officials at the state level to eradicate diseases that threaten human and animal populations (swine flu, avian flu, rabies, or tuberculosis). Veterinarians are also responsible for surveying, monitoring, control and eradication of many important diseases.

Military veterinarians

There are approximately 700 active and reservist veterinarians in the U.S. Army Veterinary Corps. They care for government owned animals, are engaged in research, and are responsible for food safety and security inspections for all of the Armed Services. They are stationed both in the U.S. and overseas.

Teaching and Research

Veterinarians work in universities, engaged in both teaching and research in food safety, zoonotic diseases, newly emerging diseases and public health research and teaching. Research positions are also available for veterinarians in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies which are continually developing new drugs for animals and humans.


Veterinarians are central to the care of captive zoo animals, aquarium species as well as free ranging wildlife species and endangered animals. They work closely with wildlife conservation agents, state officials, and researchers. They also survey, monitor, and treat disease outbreaks in the wild. If you are a true outdoor person, wildlife veterinary medicine might be for you.