9 Best Veterinary Schools in Iowa:Key Info For Each

Searching for the best veterinary schools in Iowa? There are over ten universities in Iowa that offer veterinary medicine courses but we have selected the best with the highest ratings and best reviews for you.

Veterinarians play a major role in the health care of pets, livestock, zoo, sporting, and laboratory animals. 

Some veterinarians use their skills to protect humans against diseases carried by animals or to conduct clinical research on human and animal health problems. 

Others work in basic research, broadening the scope of fundamental theoretical knowledge, or in applied research, developing new ways to use knowledge.

To become a licensed and certified veterinarian in Iowa, you’ll have to go to any of the good Veterinary Schools in Iowa which offer the course and get a degree. 

The List of Best Schools For Veterinary Medicine In Iowa

  • Iowa State University

  • Iowa Lakes Community College

  • Northeast Iowa Community College

  • Kirkwood Community College

  • Eastern Iowa Community College District

  • Western Iowa Tech Community College

  • Des Moines Area Community College

  • Luther College

  • Mercy College

1. Iowa State University:

The College of Veterinary Medicine was established in 1879, and is the oldest veterinary college in the United States. 

Iowa State has graduated 6,400 veterinarians and is one of the largest veterinary research facilities in the nation.

Iowa State College of Veterinary Medicine can trace its history back to the school’s founding in 1858, when state legislators specified that veterinary studies would be included in the subjects of instruction. 

Seniors of ISU’s first graduating class in 1872, received instruction in veterinary science, but it was not until 1879 that degrees were offered in that subject. 

The ISU veterinary school was the first state veterinary college in the United States. 

Other private veterinary colleges all closed by the 1920s, leaving ISU as the oldest veterinary college still in operation in the United States.

Originally, the degree programs offered were only two-year programs, but with expanded coursework, the program was extended to three years in 1887 and to four years by 1903 (making Iowa State the nation’s first four-year veterinary school).

In 1885, veterinary classes were held in the “Sanitary Building,” which was located where the current ISU Memorial Union now stands. 

In 1893 the veterinary department was moved to the “Old Agricultural Hall” or “Botany Hall”, today known as Catt Hall.

By 1912, overcrowding became an issue. With state appropriation, the “Vet Quadrangle” (currently known as Lagomarcino Hall) was built on the north side of campus. 

The Quadrangle consisted of four buildings connected by corridors arranged around the central courtyard. 

A fifth building was then constructed further north and the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory was completed in 1956.

As the college continued to grow, the faculty became dissatisfied with the old name for the college, the “Division of Veterinary Medicine”.

To rename the college, it required making the other divisions within Iowa State college into separate colleges also. 

On July 4, 1959, the change was finally made and the “Division of Veterinary Medicine” is now called the “College of Veterinary Medicine.”

The Quadrangle was the veterinary school’s primary building for 64 years until overcrowding once again became an issue. 

Plans were developed for a new facility on a tract of land adjacent to the Veterinary Medical Research Institute just north of Highway 30. 

The new facility was completed in 1976 at a cost of just over $25 million. 

Dedication ceremonies were held in the fall which President Gerald Ford, among other state and national dignitaries, attended.

Year – 2022-20232022-2023
Tuition & Fees  –  $27,879$58,777
Room & Board  –  $9,640    $9,640
Books & Supplies – $1,091$1,091

2. Iowa Lakes Community College: 

The Iowa Lakes Community College Vet Tech School is designed to prepare students for professional positions in the field of Veterinary Technology in private or public health facilities. 

The program emphasizes the high standards of the AVMA who is responsible for accrediting Veterinary Technicians. 

The education and curriculum will emphasize the required topics and teach the knowledge and skills needed to begin working in the field of Veterinary Technology.

Iowa Lakes Community College Vet Tech School is a school located in Algona, Iowa offering allied health programs. 

The institution has an enrollment of 2122 undergraduate students. The Iowa Lakes Community College Vet Tech School acceptance rate is N/A%. 

Scroll down to see more IPEDs data for this school including student population data, more info and contact details for it’s Veterinary Technician, and career employment data such as average salary and hourly wage details from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

3. Northeast Iowa Community College:

This program includes in-depth interaction with both companion animals and livestock. 

The program utilizes a new small animal surgical suite, on-site digital radiology imaging equipment that serves both companion and large animal clients. 

As part of your education you receive direct access to Iowa’s Dairy Center, the Beef Science Education Center (both conveniently located on campus), Iowa State University Swine Medical Education Center, many private equine facilities and local farms learning many different aspects of veterinary medicine.

This two-year program is accredited by the AVMA CVTEA and includes companion animal medicine with an extra focus on large animal medicine. 

You will complete the program able to perform all hands-on task requirements set forth by the AVMA on the Veterinary Technology Essential Skills List in compliance with AVMA standards.

4. Kirkwood Community College:

All students applying for admission into the Veterinary Technician programs will be required to take the HESI entrance exam. 

All students are required to attend a program conference for the Veterinary Technician program. 

Students must pre-register by going to the Veterinary Technician page on the Kirkwood Community College website and clicking on the program conference tab.

Once a student attends a program conference, a student list will be provided to the Kirkwood Bookstore within three business days of attending the program conference. 

After the third business day, the student will be able to go to the Kirkwood Bookstore (1st floor, Benton Hall) to purchase access to the HESI entrance exam. 

The cost of the exam is $50 (the price is subject to change). Cash and debit/credit card payments are accepted.

Once the HESI exam has been purchased, the student should schedule a time to take the exam at the Test Center on Cedar Rapids Main Campus.

On the day of the scheduled exam, students must bring a valid (not expired) photo I.D., such as a driver’s license or passport to verify identification. 

In addition, a valid photo I.D., proof of payment (bookstore receipt) and Elsevier user name and password will be required for testing. 

Students will be allowed four hours to complete the entrance exam and will receive their results immediately upon completion. 

Students are allowed two attempts at the exam.

5. Eastern Iowa Community College District:

The Eastern Iowa Community Colleges (EICC) includes three community colleges stretched along the Mississippi River in the U.S. state of Iowa. 

Eastern Iowa Community Colleges consists of the Iowa counties of Clinton, Muscatine, and Scott. The EICC administrative offices are in Davenport.

EICC is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and the colleges are approved by the Iowa Department of Education and the Board of Regents. 

Individual programs are accredited by associations within their respective fields.

EICC was established in 1965 by the Iowa General Assembly as one of 15 community college merged areas. 

The move combined Clinton Junior College, Muscatine Junior College and the vocational-technical programs of the Davenport schools.

In 1979 the District acquired Palmer Junior College to make Scott Community College a comprehensive institution.

6. Western Iowa Tech Community College:

This program is designed to place students into the workforce upon completion of the two-year degree. 

Veterinary Technologists assist veterinarians in the examination, diagnosis, treatment, and care of animals in a veterinary clinic, animal hospital, or research facility. 

Graduates of this program can find employment in many sectors including small and large private animal practices, animal shelters and humane societies, clinical laboratories, education, zoos, government research, and the biomedical industry. 

Upon graduation of the program, students are eligible to take the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) and the Iowa Veterinary Technician Examination to become a Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT). 

The employment opportunities for veterinary technologists are expected to increase by 41% through the year 2016.

Few professions can give you as much satisfaction as working with animals, but you’ll need the best training possible to succeed in this career field. Iowa Western’s Veterinary Technology study program will send you on your way after earning an Associate of Applied Science degree.

Iowa Western graduates are working in many areas of the animal science industry, including large and small veterinary clinics, animal shelters, clinical laboratories, zoos, animal research facilities, and biomedical facilities.

Iowa Western’s new state-of-the-art Veterinary Technology facility and personable instructors are two of the attractive features of this program. 

Students learn valuable skills in surgical labs and participate in animal care and kennel duty every day. 

Vaccination clinics are held on campus, giving students hands-on experience with animals of many different species. 

Graduates become eligible for the Veterinary Technician National Examination and the Iowa Veterinary Technician Examination to become Registered Veterinary Technicians. 

This field increases in demand each year.

The Veterinary Technology program is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

7. Des Moines Area Community College: 

​The DMACC Veterinary Technology Degree program provides students with training in the latest advancements in veterinary technology. 

Both classroom lectures and hands-on training are utilized.

Veterinary technicians provide professional technical support to veterinarians, biomedical researchers and other scientists. 

As a veterinary technician, you will care for hospitalized animal patients; assist the doctor in surgery; perform physical exams, lab work and technical procedures (blood draws, IV placement); take health histories and X-rays; give and monitor anesthesia; provide client education; and perform reception duties. 

There will be opportunities to work with a variety of animals including dogs, cats, horses, cows, pigs, sheep, birds, snakes, guinea pigs, hamsters, and rats.

Most DMACC Veterinary Technology Degree graduates find work in small, mixed or large animal practices. 

Other opportunities exist in humane societies, animal shelters, zoos, specialty veterinary practices, pet shops, biological research labs, animal control agencies, veterinary teaching hospitals, and state and federal agencies.

8. Luther College:

Luther College, founded in 1861 by Norwegian immigrants, is a four-year residential liberal arts college of the Lutheran church (ELCA). 

The college is an academic community of faith and learning where students of promise from all beliefs and backgrounds have the freedom to learn, to express themselves, to perform, to compete, and to grow. 

Located in Decorah, Iowa, the college is home to 2,053 students from 39 states and more than 70 countries. 

Twenty-five percent of the students are from Iowa; 79% come from the four-state area of Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois. 

Each year, over 140 international students choose to study at Luther.

Admission is selective. An applicant must be a graduate of an accredited high school and have completed at least four years of English, three years of mathematics, three years of social science, and two units of natural science. 

It is strongly recommended that the applicant have at least two years of a foreign language. 

Over 54% of entering students rank in the top quarter of their high school class. 

Transfer students may enroll at the beginning of the fall or spring semester or the January term.

9. Mercy College:

The program draws students from all around the country. 

Students receive the best training possible and graduates have had 98 percent pass rate on the national board examination for 20+ years.

Imagine practicing as a veterinary technologist, a highly educated and skilled member of the animal health care team. 

Today’s veterinary technologists have licensed professionals who team with veterinarians to offer state-of-the-art veterinary care. 

The Mercy College Veterinary Technology Program is fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (AVMA CVTEA) and leads to a four-year Bachelor of Science degree and the title, of veterinary technologist.

How To Choose The Best Veterinary Schools in Iowa

There are things to consider when choosing a school and choosing a vet school is no different. Here are some things to consider before choosing a vet school.

Even if you attend one of the most esteemed programs out there, it won’t matter much if you don’t make it through the program. 

It’s important to choose a veterinary school that truly values its students and their success by ensuring no one slips through the cracks.

To read more on how to choose the right vet school for you, check out the article Best Vet Schools in Colorado on our website.


Veterinary Medicine is definitely a great aspect of medicine. To find out about similar programs, visit our website, eduplanetonline.com

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