Welcome to the Vet Tech Institute of Houston
We are happy that you found us. Here's a quick snapshot of who we are:
Where: Houston, TX (near the Galleria area)
What: Associate of Applied Science Degree in Veterinary Technology
How Long: 18 months start to finish
Accreditation: American Veterinary Medical Association CVTEA
Facilities: Kennels, surgical suite with prep area, clinical labs, radiography room, and more!
Nearby: Student housing, public transportation, free parking and recreation
When: Starting 3 times per year
Who: Faculty, staff and (maybe) you!
We'd love to show you what we have to offer. Schedule your visit to see things first hand!
All of our students and faculty share a passion for animals. It’s that unique blend of shared passion and shared goals that creates a family like atmosphere and creates the strong bonds of friendship.
Vet Tech Institute of Houston faculty members include:
Sunshine Borrer, AAS, is a graduate of VTI Houston with over 10 years of experience with small animals and exotics in general practice. She has also worked in emergency medicine and in a Fear Free certified clinic. As a laboratory assistant, she loves being able to help students perfect their skills before stepping out into the world. In her free time, she likes to read, binge-watch series, enjoy the outdoors, bake and craft. She is blessed with a Husky (Vici), two Boston Terriers (Athena and Hercules), two special needs cats (Punkin and Helen), a daughter, and a fianće.
Rachel Defoe, LVT is a graduate of VTI. Ms. Defoe has served as a kennel technician, veterinary assistant, and licensed veterinary technician with a variety of organizations including working with exotic animals for three years in a clinical setting. She enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, son, their two dogs, cat, bearded dragon, and ball python.
Valerie Lewis, LVT is a graduate of VTI with experience in general practice, emergency, and specialty settings. She moved back to Houston from Austin where she worked for four years expanding and honing her surgical and anesthesia skills. While in Austin, Valerie adopted a dog and two senior cats. Having always been a cat person first and foremost, she is excited about fostering cats and kittens! She spends most of her free time reading all sorts of books from mystery thrillers to science fiction to historical non-fiction if she doesn't have any DIY projects in the works.
Alberto Mendoza, DVM, graduated from the University of Tamaulipas in Mexico and worked at the Houston Zoo for 17 years before joining the VTI faculty in 2008. He has taught every single cohort that has graduated from VTI Houston. Dr. Mendoza teaches several courses including Exotic Animals, Equine Clinical Management, Food Animal Clinical Management, and Large Animal Veterinary Technician. Dr. Mendoza is still active in wildlife conservation programs. During his tenure at the Houston Zoo, he was instrumental in the recovery program for amphibians in Central America and developed training programs for zoo staff in the Latin American region. Still an active member in the Tapir Specialist Group-IUCN, Dr. Mendoza helps to manage the captive population of the Central American Tapir around the world. He enjoys traveling with his wife and two daughters and is a huge Houston Texans football fan. Serveral years ago, he adopted a dog from VTI and named it Tex.
Kati Nelson, LVT, graduated from VTIH, worked in private practice, and completed a B.S. in Veterinary Technology from Tarleton State University. In private practice, she became the team lead in a fast-paced, referral surgery/neurology and ICU practice. She also developed a deep interest in patient care, neurology, and control of disease processes. Back at VTIH, she now teaches courses that include Laboratory Procedures and Canine and Feline Clinical Management. At home, she and her husband have "furry" children: a Catahoula mix named Bruce, and two cats named Olive and Meercat.
Rocio Panessa, LVT, is a graduate of VTI with strong experience in emergency and critical care. Over 10 years, Rocio started in general practice and then held leadership technician positions in different specialty hospitals. Currently she teaches anatomy and physiology courses and clinical pathology courses. A Houston native, she can be found hanging out with her "people" family, as well as her felines (Keanu, Ahsoka, and Chedder, her fur children) and canines (Precious and Major). Rocio also loves travel, especially if it includes a Disney park or rollercoasters.
Ashley Rosich, B.S., LVT, RALAT, was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she obtained her B.S. in Veterinary Technology from University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus. Ashley has 14 years of experience as a veterinary technician for ICUs, general practice clinics, and in animal research, including leadership and management positions. At VTI, she teaches a variety of courses include Anatomy and Physiology, Clinical Pathology and Nutrition. When not teaching, she enjoys spending time with her son and her pit bull mix, Joline, who was adopted from the school.
Theresa Schweiss, DVM, serves as Medical Director and faculty member. She has over thirty years of veterinary experience in small animal and exotic pet practice and over twenty-five years of private practice management experience along with shelter experience. Dr. Schweiss has served as a guest lecturer for Northern American University in medicine and husbandry of exotic pets. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine, and her undergraduate work in pre-veterinary medicine was completed at South Dakota State University. When not working, she is an active volunteer with a variety of organizations.
Annessa Smith, MLAS, LATg, joined the VTI faculty with over 15 years of experience in veterinary medicine, mostly in the lab animal sector. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Texas State University and her Master's degree in Laboratory Animal Science from Drexel University. She teaches a variety of courses including Special Topics, Anatomy and Physiology, and Lab Animal. When not teaching, Annessa enjoys reading and traveling with her family.
Brittni Sterle, LVT, ALAT, is a graduate of VTI and is pursuing a bachelor's degree in Veterinary Technology from Penn Foster. She originally spent four years in private practice, before moving on to specialty medicine focusing mainly on oncology. She then moved into laboratory animal medicine, where she obtained her ALAT certification. From a young age, she knew she wanted to teach, and she is thrilled to be doing it at VTIH. The courses she teaches include Introduction to Veterinary Technology and Small Animal Medicine. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading, and being outside with her four cats and one dog.
The Vet Tech Institute of Houston works closely with distance students to help them find affordable housing options. Some options are close enough that you can walk to school, some require a short drive.
Typical housing features include:
- Apartment style living
- Some locations have swimming pools and fitness rooms
- On-site laundry facilities
- Relatively close to school
July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2023
Number of First-Time Test Takers
3 Year Average VTNE Pass Rate for First-Time Test Takers
Animal Care Duty
Vet Tech Institute of Houston maintains an on-site kennel housing dogs, cats, and rodents. An important part of the education provided by the Veterinary Technology program is learning hands-on the duties and responsibilities of animal care and sanitation. Therefore, all students are assigned to participate in kennel duty. Students sign up for shifts and will participate either before or after classes and on rotating weekends.
The school catalog contains specific information about school policies. You can find information on admissions policies and practices, contact information for accrediting and state licensing agencies, information on tuition and fees, refund policies and other consumer information.
The Vet Tech Institute Veterinary Technology program is currently accredited by the Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA) of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). The address and telephone number of the American Veterinary Medical Association are 1931 N. Meacham Road, Schaumburg, IL 60173, (847) 925-8070.
Vet Tech Institute of Houston is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. The address, telephone number, and website of the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges are 2101 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 302, Arlington, VA 22201, (703) 247-4212, www.accsc.org.
The Vet Tech Institute of Houston has a Certificate of Approval from the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) and a Certificate of Authorization from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) to operate a career school or college in the state of Texas. The TWC assigned school number is S0052. The school’s programs are authorized by both the TWC and the THECB.
In accordance with Texas requirement 40 TAC, Chapter 807, Section 807.301 and THECB Rules 1.110-112, School Policy Regarding Complaints, we provide the following information:
Students who have a grievance or who wish to file a complaint should follow the grievance procedure outlined in the school catalog. (The catalog can be found at houston.sxxmcg.com/catalog.) Paper copies of the catalog are provided to students, and additional copies are available upon request. Students who are dissatisfied with the school’s response to their complaint or who are not able to file a complaint can file a formal complaint with the TWC and THECB as well as with other relevant agencies and/or accreditors. Information on filing a complaint with TWC and THECB respectively can be found on TWC’s Career Schools and Colleges Website at http://csc.twc.state.tx.us and THECB’s Website at http://www.thecb.state.tx.us.
Nondiscrimination in Educational Programs and Activities
Educational institutions receiviing federal financial assistance are required to comply with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. These federal laws prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender, including sexual harrassment and sexual violence; sexual orientation; genetic information; race; color; religion; national origin; age; veteran status and disability in the education programs and activities that they operate. Vet Tech Institute of Houston is subject to these laws and complies fully with them in the enrollment of students, the hiring of faculty and staff, and in all other activities of the school. Elbert Hamilton, Jr., the Director/Chief Academic Officer, who is identified in the Administration, Faculty, and Staff section of this catalog and who may be reached by phone at 713-629-1500 or by mail at 4669 Southwest Freeway, Suite 100, Houston, TX 77027, is the Title IX Coordinator at Vet Tech Institute of Houston. Questions regarding Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator or to the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights. Students, faculty, and administrative employees are encouraged to bring any complaints or reports of discrimination to the coordinator's attention. The matter will be investigated promptly, and both parties will be notified in writing about the outcome of the complaint. Appropriate follow up will be implemented to assure that no person associated with the school is subjected to unlawful discriminiation. Individuals who report discrimination will not be subject to any retaliation for doing so.