Veterinary Assistant Program

The Veterinary Assistant program is a 300-hour course endorsed by Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association (PVMA) and approved by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians (NAVTA) provides skills high in demand in veterinary facilities, animal hospitals, animal shelters, and animal laboratories. Graduates can assist veterinarians and licensed veterinary technicians with; animal nursing care, surgical assistance, laboratory sampling, client education as well as office work. Be a part of the animal handling, diagnostic, examination, and treatments team!

Program Curriculum

In this program, you will learn proper procedure in the following areas:

  • Large Animal
  • Small and Companion Animal
  • Exotic Animal
  • Laboratory
  • Office
  • Pharmacy
  • Radiology
  • Surgical Assistance

At the end of the program, students will have the opportunity to take the PVMA or Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association exam. This exam is recognized by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the Pennsylvania Department of Education. There is a written and practical portion to the exam.

For an additional fee, students are eligible to take the NAVTA-approved national veterinary assistant exam. With successful completion of the exam, individuals will become Approved Veterinary Assistants (AVA) and be recognized for their accomplishment with the AVA designation. Admissions is on an annual basis starting in August.

Course Info

Cost: $4,180  ($1,000 deposit due upon application to hold a spot)

Tuition covers instructor wages, processing fees, state exams, and supplies. Does not include textbooks.

Tuition must be paid in full before the start of the course.  Consider a payment plan by opening a 0% interest for 18 months credit card with Mid Penn Bank.  See flyer for details.

Hours: 300 

Certificates of Completion are issued to participants completing a minimum of 80% of the course.

Dates:  September 10, 2024 to June 12, 2025 (Tuesday and Thursday evenings)

Time:  5:30 pm – 9:30 pm

This is a popular hybrid program (some convenient online sessions plus in-person training).  Textbooks will be on loan to students during the length of the course but must be returned when the course is completed or the student will be invoiced for $300 for replacement costs.

Online Application

Acceptable Forms of Payment

Personal Pay: Credit/Debit (Visa, Mastercard, American Express), Money Order, or Cash

Company Pay: Company Credit Card or Company Check

Payment in full is two weeks prior to the first class. Submission of an application alone does not guarantee a spot in the class

Checks should be made out to DCTS ADULT & CONTINUING EDUCATION and mailed to 6001 Locust Lane, Harrisburg, PA 17109 or call (717) 652-3170 ext. 7902 to make payment by credit card. No refunds will be issued after the start of class.

Applicants should set up an interview to receive a student handbook and take a basic math/reading comprehension questionnaire by calling the Adult & Continuing Education department at (717) 652-3170 ext 7902(Option 2) or emailing Registration and fee deadline is two weeks prior to the first class.  Space is limited so sign up early to confirm your seat. NO REFUNDS will be offered after the start of class.

Online Application  Applications can also printed here, completed, and emailed to:


Acceptable Forms of Payment

Personal Pay: Credit/Debit (Visa, Mastercard & American Express), Money Order, or Cash

Company Pay: Company Credit Card or Company Check

Please call  to inquire about Tuition Payment Options


Registration and fee deadline is one week prior to the first class. Individuals are not considered registered with DCTS until payment is made and a completed application, as well as a copy of your current driver’s license, is submitted to the Adult & Continuing Education Office. Applications and a copy of your driver’s license can be emailed to

Adult learners must be able to understand, speak, read, and write the English language.

Space is limited so sign up early to confirm your seat.  Online Application

Due to safety considerations, no one under the influence of drugs or alcohol will be permitted to attend class or be on the premises of Dauphin County Technical School property. It is the discretion of the instructor in making any and all determination and identification of individuals under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This may include prescription drugs if, in the opinion of the instructor the drugs impair the judgment of the participant. Copies of the DCTS Use of Tobacco Policy #222 and Drug and Alcohol Policy #227 are listed below.

*Your signature is required on the registration form to indicate that you have read, understand, and will abide by these policies.

The Joint Operating Committee recognizes that tobacco, nicotine, and nicotine delivery products present a health and safety hazard that can have serious consequences for both users and nonusers and the safety and environment of the school. For purposes of this policy, tobacco includes a lighted or unlighted cigarette, cigar, cigarillo, little cigar, pipe, or other smoking product or material and smokeless tobacco in any form including chewing tobacco, snuff, dip, or dissolvable tobacco pieces.[1] For purposes of this policy, nicotine shall mean a product that contains or consists of nicotine in a form that can be ingested by chewing, smoking, inhaling, or through other means. For purposes of this policy, a nicotine delivery product shall mean a product or device used, intended for use, or designed for the purpose of ingesting nicotine or another substance. This definition includes, but is not limited to, any device or associated product used for what is commonly referred to as vaping or juuling.
It is the goal of the Dauphin County Technical School to maintain a drug-free and alcohol-free school environment. In order to further this goal, the Alcohol, Drugs, and Controlled Substances Policy No. 227. A student shall not possess, use, transmit, deliver, sell or be under the influence of any controlled substance. Controlled substances shall be defined as A. All dangerous controlled substances prohibited by law within the meaning of the Controlled Substance, Drug-Device, and Cosmetic Act as amended. B. All over-the-counter medications. C. All alcoholic beverages. D. Any anabolic steroids. E. Any synthetic compound, or any herbal substance sold as an incense, bath salts, or smoking material that mimics the effects of marijuana. F. Any drug paraphernalia. Drug paraphernalia includes equipment, apparatus, and/or gear generally associated with the use/abuse of alcohol, narcotic drugs, and mood-altering chemicals. Examples may include items such as “pot pipes,” cigarette-rolling papers, roach clips, weighing scales, and any other device used to measure, inject, inhale, ingest, package, deliver or facilitate the use, sale, or distribution of a controlled substance. G. All legal or illegal hemp products. H. Volatile solvents or inhalants to include glue and aerosol propellants. I. Any prescription, patent drug, caffeine pills/capsules, epinephrine, or other stimulants except those for which permission for use in school has been granted pursuant to Joint Operating Committee Policy. J. Any look-a-like substance that resembles any item above including any non-controlled substance that in its overall finished dosage appearance is substantially similar in size, shape, color, marking, or packaging to any controlled substance.