Pre-Veterinary (BS)

Earn a Pre-Veterinary degree to help animals and their owners live their best lives.

Available as
Bachelor of Science
4 years
Fort Wayne

Becoming a Vet: Why Study Pre-Veterinary Medicine?

From caring for companion animals — our furry, feathered and scaled family members — to ensuring the country’s food supply is safe, veterinarians play an incredibly important role in society.

Pet ownership has more than doubled since 1988. Advances in veterinary medicine and nutrition, coupled with a bigger focus on preventative care, life expectancy for cats and dogs has risen. The Midwest, particularly, is seeing a shortage of livestock/food-animal veterinarians.

For these reasons and more, demand for veterinarians (DVM) nationwide is expected to increase 16% by 2029, and the need will be even higher in Indiana.


National median salary for veterinarians


100 Best Jobs in America

U.S. News & World Report, 2020


Expected increase in demand for veterinarians in Indiana through 2031, higher than the national average growth

Why Saint Francis for Biology Pre-Vet?

Nationally recognized for its high-quality, values-based health professions programs, the University of Saint Francis is an ideal place to begin your journey toward becoming a vet.

Saint Francis’ comprehensive, academically rigorous pre-vet curriculum, coupled with practical learning experiences and personalized advising, will equip you for the GREs, MCATs, and, ultimately, for admission to a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM).

Research and Real-World Experiences

As a biology/pre-vet major, you will learn by doing through project-based courses, community service, and even independent research. In addition to a strong science foundation, becoming a vet requires real-world experience with animals (and their owners!)

Off-campus, you will participate in job shadowing and pursue internships at local veterinary practices and hospitals, including Northeast Indiana Veterinary Emergency and Speciality Hospital and Southlane Veterinary Hospital. Biology majors can also prepare for careers with animals through real-world experiences through internships at places such as:

  • Wildlife rehabilitation intern at Conservancy for Southwest Florida
  • Water’s Edge intern at Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium

Expert Faculty and Innovative Facilities

As you take courses across the disciplines, from animal nutrition to vertebrate physiology, you will engage with faculty-scientists and working practitioners with a diverse range of research interests, including:

  • Aquatic ecology
  • Cell biology
  • Community health education
  • Conservation biology
  • Invertebrate ecology
  • Mammalian cell culture
  • Wildlife biology
  • Zoology

Many of our natural and biological sciences faculty have even spent some of their research careers with animals: armadillos, black bear, freshwater mussels and shorebirds to name a few.

Saint Francis biology pre-vet majors will build much of their skills and knowledge at Achatz Hall of Science, a state-of-the-art facility with modern learning spaces and cutting-edge laboratories.

Campus and Community Involvement

Saint Francis students will find many ways to get involved on campus and in the community. Organizations that might appeal to biology and pre-vet majors include:

  • Pre-Professional Healthcare Honor Society
  • Chemistry Club
  • Eco Club

Additionally, you’ll often find biology and health sciences students, especially on exam-eve, studying together in Achatz’s meeting rooms and collaboration spaces.

Veterinary Jobs and Other Careers Working with Animals

Veterinarians most often work in private or group practice; however, becoming a vet can also lead to careers with animals in settings like:

  • Advocacy/public policy
  • Agriculture
  • Colleges and universities
  • Government agencies
  • Rescues/shelters
  • U.S. Military
  • Zoos and aquariums

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) offers an excellent veterinary jobs resource for students.

A bachelor’s in biology with a pre-vet focus can prepare you for other science- and health-related careers with animals — or people! Saint Francis alumni have found roles at:

  • Allen Veterinary Hospital – veterinary assistant
  • ARUP Laboratories – technologist in molecular biology
  • Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo – animal care associate
  • Texas State Aquarium – animal care technician
  • Padre Island National Seashore – biological science technician

Acceptance: Graduate and Professional Programs

Our biology/pre-vet students have been accepted into doctor of veterinary medicine and Ph.D. programs at institutions such as:

  • Miami University (Ph.D. in ecology, evolutionary and environmental biology)
  • Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine
  • University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine

Learn more about what makes life at Saint Francis so special.