Animal Science

  • horse

    Rebecca Sheahan, Animal Science teacher, instructs students about the proper care and examination of horses.

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    The Animal Science career pathway at Thomas McKean High School provides students with the ability to prepare for a career and/or postsecondary education in the animal husbandry industry ranging from veterinary medicine to food and fiber animal production. The courses offered in this pathway provide students with a unique opportunity to gain valuable skills and knowledge through classroom and hands-on instruction. Students will have the chance to work with the multitude of companion and livestock animal that call our McKean barn home. Students will also be exposed to other animals through field experience, guest speakers and much more. Students who choose to complete an externship in the veterinary field will be able to take the Certified Veterinary Assistant (CVA) exam.

    Throughout their time in the Animal Science pathway, students will learn about small animal care and keeping, livestock species and food/fiber animal husbandry, animal anatomy and physiology, animal nutrition, reproduction and all the basic skills necessary to succeed as a veterinary assistant. Students will also have the chance to work in the McKean Animal Science barn with a focus on producing eggs and meat for retail sale. This farm to table business is a growing entity and our students will play a key role in the development of our farm stand here at McKean High School. Their time in the McKean barn will be production animal based where they will learn how to feed and manage livestock, artificially inseminate pigs, maintain biosecurity procedures, and even birth animals!

    The Agriculture industry, and more specifically the animal care industry, is ever growing. Currently, 9.3% of all United States employment is in the field of agriculture. Many of these jobs directly relate to animal science. Students who complete the Animal Science career pathway will be ready to secure one of the over 17.3 million jobs in United State agriculture! 


  • Quick Facts 

    What Am I Studying?

    Coursework & College Credit

    • Animal Science Levels 1-3
    • Animal Science 4 (Vet Tech or Co-op)
    • Completion of 3-year pathway earns one agricultural college course at Delaware State Univerisity or University of Delaware


    • Certified Veterinary Assitant (CVA)
    • Pork Quality Assurance
    • Other online industry certificates


    How am I involved?

    • Student-run business: Farm-to-table retail market
    • Member of FFA


    Where will it take me?

    • Entry-level Jobs

      • Vet Assistant
      • Animal Trainer
      • Kennel Staff
      • Industry Retail
    • Technical Jobs

      • Vet Tech
      • Meat/Food Inspector
      • Feed Representative
    • Professional Careers

      • Veterinarian
      • Animal Nutritionist
      • Extension Agent
      • Research/Lab Assistant