Pre-Veterinary Medicine

Veterinary medicine encompasses a very diverse professional field. Although traditionally associated with treating and preventing animal disease, veterinarians are also directly involved in protecting public health. The veterinary field has become very specialized, with most veterinarians choosing to concentrate in areas such as small animal, large animal, food animal, or exotic animal species.

Following completion of pre-veterinary studies, veterinary school is a standard 4-year curriculum. Veterinarians may go directly into practice after veterinary school; internships and residencies are available but not required.

For those who want to become clinical specialists, internships and residencies are available at larger referral centers. Veterinary medical specialties exist in areas such as internal medicine, surgery, ophthalmology, anesthesiology, dentistry, dermatology, theriogenology (reproduction), radiology, toxicology, emergency/critical care, and zoological medicine, to name a few. Specialty boards grant board certification to candidates who successfully complete residencies and pass specialty board examinations.

Opportunities also exist to enter private industry (especially nutrition and pharmaceuticals), food safety, public health/epidemiology, disaster preparedness, government, and military service.

There is one school of veterinary medicine in North Carolina: NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine

Recommended Core Courses

The following courses are current prerequisites for the College of Veterinary Medicine at NC State University.

Animal Nutrition*3 
Biochemistry3 or 4CHEM 4165  
Biology with lab**4BIOL 2120/2130, with labs
General Chemistry with labs8CHEM 1251/1252, with labs
Organic Chemistry with labs8CHEM 2131/2132, with labs
English Composition / Writing / Communications  6UWRT 1103, UWRT 1104, or COMM 1101
Genetics3 or 4BIOL 3166 
Humanities/Social Studies***6 
Microbiology with lab4BIOL 4250, with lab
Physics with labs8PHYS 1101/1102 or 2101/2102, with labs
Statistics3STAT 1220, 1221, or 1222

* Animal Nutrition courses can be taken online through an accredited university or college; suggested online programs include NC State University, Oklahoma State University, Purdue University, and Rutgers University.

**UNC Charlotte does not offer a one-semester “integrated” biology course, therefore the full 2-course sequence of BIOL 2120/2130 must be taken.

More Resources


Pre-Veterinary Club: Instagram: @unccprevet