Programs in animal health or veterinary science do not lead to professional credentials, and they do not qualify graduates to become veterinarians, but they do provide an educational foundation for students who want to pursue veterinary school or work in food safety, medical research or agriculture. Programs award both undergraduate and graduate degrees and include courses in biological sciences, animal genetics and nutrition.
The four schools profiled below offer outstanding training in animal health science. Each offers programs that provide wide-ranging comprehensive training, opening a wide variety of career options for students. These schools also emphasize hands-on research and/or clinical training in the field.
Cornell University in Ithaca, NY
|School Highlight: This high-ranking school offers undergraduate and graduate level degree programs in animal health science.|
Cornell's professional veterinary school ranked #2 among graduate specialty programs, as designated by U.S. News & World Report in 2015. The university offers a major and minor through its Department of Animal Science. This program has the potential to prepare graduates for further studies at higher levels. Each year, about 40 undergraduate students have the chance to participate in undergraduate research or teaching opportunities.
Pennsylvania State University in University Park, PA
|School Highlight: This school's animal health studies gets students involved within the community.|
The university's veterinary and biomedical science major emphasizes the sciences and prepares students for veterinary school or advanced research in animal health. The program promotes active undergraduate biomedical research and affords numerous avenues for veterinary science outreach and interaction in the community.
University of Nebraska - Lincoln, NE
|School Highlight: This school offers extensive programs at the undergraduate and graduate level in animal health studies, including a Ph.D. program.|
The university's School of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Veterinary Science program with a focus on biomedical science and microbiology. Students who have been admitted to an accredited veterinary school but wish to earn a bachelor's degree prior to enrollment, can pursue the concentration in pre-veterinary studies. Additional programs include master's and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) programs in animal science.
Brigham Young University - Idaho in Rexburg, ID
|School Highlight: The undergraduate program emphasizes an internship experience.|
Undergraduates at Brigham Young University in who choose to major in animal science study a wide variety of scientific topics related to animal management, including animal care, environmental conservation and human health and nutrition. Prior to graduation, students must fulfill an internship requirement; opportunities are available at farms and ranches throughout the West. Undergraduate research opportunities are also available.
Top Animal Health Science Programs
These schools also offer animal health science programs:
- California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, CA, has an Arabian Horse Center.
- At South Dakota State University in Brookings, SD, students run Little 'I', the largest agricultural exposition in the U.S.
- At the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ, veterinary science majors observe and engage in scientific research processes with research faculty.
- At the University of Maine in Orono, ME, students can acquire hands-on experience with livestock through the J.F. Witter Teaching and Research Center.
- At the University of New Hampshire in Durham, NH, the medical and veterinary sciences program adheres to the One Health Initiative philosophy of symbiotic human and animal healthcare study.
- At the University of Wyoming in Laramie, WY, the animal and veterinary science major offers eight concentrations, including animal biology and pre-veterinary studies.
For students interested in animal health science, there are comprehensive programs available that can prepare them for veterinary school, graduate research or jobs in the field.