Good news for veterinary technicians: In this fading economy, you have staying power. According to Laurence Shatkin, career information specialist and author of “150 Best Recession-Proof Jobs,” the recession won't result in layoffs for technicians. In fact, Shatkin lists technician as No. 2 in his top 10 recession-proof jobs. Veterinarians come in at No. 4.
In an interview aired on CBS Evening News Friday, Feb. 20, Shatkin says the reason veterinary technicians are recession-proof is because pets are now considered part of the family unit. Their healthcare is no longer thought of as discretionary spending, he says, it's essential. Shatkin supported his theory with numbers. In 2006, Americans spent $24.5 billion on healthcare for pets. That’s more than double the amount spent in 1996.
With more owners requesting more care, it’s not surprising that CBS's news show named the veterinary profession as the fastest growing field, second to computer analysis, and estimated that the field will grow 41 percent in the next decade. Cynthia Mark, also interviewed by CBS, recently left the computer analysis field to pursue a career as a veterinary technician through St. Petersburg College in Pinellas Park, Fla. She says she isn't worried about her future considering the job placement rate at St. Petersburg is 96 percent. The news report even says she can eventually make the same income—a whopping $70,000—as she did in the computer world.
How realistic is Mark's 70K goal—and should technicians earn such high salaries? To see what industry experts think, click here. And to read veterinarians' and team members' thoughts, click here.