WSU launches Veterinary Paraprofessional Certificate Program


The university hopes to help alleviate the veterinary shortage through this new program



Washington State University (WSU) announced the launch of its new Veterinary Paraprofessional Certificate Program with the goal of the program to help fight the staffing shortage within the veterinary profession. This new program will have a quicker timeline and create new opportunities for a wider audience that is interested in veterinary medicine for a lower cost, flexible online training, and only requires a high school degree or equivalent.

“There is a huge issue in the profession with staffing shortages and burnout. Many of the current ideas being talked about are multi-year or decade-out solutions to an immediate problem,” said Hilary Koenigs, DVM, director of the Paraprofessional Certificate Program at WSU, in an organizational release.1 “The goal of this program is to find an innovative way to address these issues, and get new, qualified people into the profession who can make a big impact in a short period of time.”

According to the release,1 the program will use online learning that participants can complete anywhere that offers hands-on training in a clinical setting within a month of starting. The short completion period can allow participants to enter the workforce sooner to help ease workloads for veterinarians and technicians while also enhancing client care.

The program will also be available to undergraduate students who are looking for more clinical experience before applying to veterinary school and current veterinary clinic employees that want to grow their skillset and responsibilities.

“Veterinary paraprofessionals will expand the team that can help serve clients’ needs,” explained Dori Borjesson, DVM, MVPM, PhD, dean of the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine.1 “There are diverse teams of people supporting physicians in human medicine, and we envision something similar in veterinary medicine.”

The university will also partner with undergraduate clubs at the school and other organizations to start providing scholarships for the new program. To learn more about the program, visit the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine’s website.


Paraprofessional program offers solutions for veterinary medicine. News release. Washington State University. January 3, 2023. Accessed January 5, 2023.

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