- How do I become an aquatic veterinarian?
- I am interested in the Aquatic Animal Medicine certificate program, but I am not a UF veterinary student. Can I still enroll?
- Does the UF College of Veterinary Medicine offer an aquatic veterinary degree?
- I have a question about registering for your online courses. Where can I find more information?
To become an aquatic veterinarian, you will first need to first complete a Bachelors program, preferably in a scientific field of study and take any pre-requisites courses that the veterinary school you are applying for requires. During your senior year of undergraduate school or after graduation, you can begin applying to veterinary school programs to earn your Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree (DVM). Veterinary school is a 4-year program of study. In order to be a prepared and competitive applicant, it is strongly recommended that prospective students find opportunities to get hands-on experience working with animals and maintain a high undergraduate GPA. Hands-on experience including volunteering, job shadowing, and employment will allow prospective students to become comfortable and skilled at handling a variety of animals. These opportunities will also promote a better understanding of what the veterinary profession entails in various settings, which will help prospective students begin to identify interests and determine career paths and goals. Although hands-on experience with aquatic, zoo, wildlife, or exotic species is certainly helpful, it may not always be possible to get jobs or volunteer opportunities with aquatic animals right away, as these opportunities are limited and competitive. Gaining experience with domestic species is still valuable! It is important to note that no veterinary schools offer an aquatics-specific DVM degree. Veterinary school will focus primarily on domestic animal medicine, so getting experience with pets or farm animals is very beneficial to begin down this career path. Upon completion of a DVM program, aspiring aquatic veterinarians can then pursue internships, find special training opportunities, or look for job opportunities to help themselves enter into the aquatics specialty field. Potential jobs could be with a zoo or aquarium, an aquaculture facility, a research organization or facility, or other special programs that care for or strive to care for, conserve, and learn more about aquatic animals.
Our Aquatic Animal Health Program allows veterinary students enrolled at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine to take elective courses and earn a certificate in Aquatic Animal Medicine in addition to their DVM.
Our UF College of Veterinary Medicine recently launched a Pre-Vet Tool-Kit to help prospective students learn more about our DVM program and prepare for the application process.
I am interested in the Aquatic Animal Medicine certificate program, but I am not a UF veterinary student. Can I still enroll?
No, unfortunately, our Aquatic Animal Medicine certificate program is exclusive to veterinary students enrolled at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine. However, students from any school can enroll in our online courses. Graduate and professional students can also complete our Care and Conservation of Aquatic Animals graduate certificate program.
No, the UF College of Veterinary Medicine, like all other accredited veterinary institutions, offers a DVM degree. While graduates with a DVM are veterinarians who could treat aquatic species, typically additional post-DVM training such as internships and residencies are required to receive further specialization and experience with aquatic species. Our Aquatic Animal Medicine certificate program allows UF veterinary students to take elective aquatics courses in addition to their DVM curriculum, thus providing them with entry-level knowledge of the aquatic veterinary specialization.
Information about the online courses offered each semester can be found at our Distance Learning Courses page. We also have a Frequently Asked Questions page which addresses common questions regarding registration, enrollment, and payment.