So you want to be a vet?

The veterinary profession is a rewarding career with opportunities in a range of industries. Veterinarians support the health and wellbeing of animals, including pets, working animals, farm livestock and wildlife.

A career in veterinary science could be a good fit if you:

  • do well in science and maths
  • like thinking analytically and solving problems
  • are self-motivated
  • want a challenging and rewarding career working with animals and people
  • enjoy being part of a team
  • have great communication skills

To become a veterinarian in Aotearoa New Zealand, you need a Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc). This is five years of study and will be your starting point for an interesting and diverse future.

Learn more about becoming a veterinarian, including entry requirements, recommended secondary school education and personal requirements, job outlook and pay scales on the Careers NZ website.

Study veterinary science

Massey University's School of Veterinary Science – Tāwharau Ora is the only training institute for veterinarians in Aotearoa.

Study veterinary science - text

Becoming a vet

Massey's Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc) qualifies you to work as a vet. We're the only university in Aotearoa New Zealand to offer this degree.

Our BVSc is internationally recognised and accredited, so Massey vet graduates can work in countries such as Australia, Canada, South Africa, the UK and United States.

It's competitive to enter BVSc. Here are the steps involved.


Entry requirements: We recommend a good background in sciences and maths. For New Zealand students, this means 14 to 20 credits of NCEA Level 3 chemistry and biology, and 14 to 20 credits in Level 2 maths and/or physics. You also need to do work experience or observation time in a veterinary clinic before the pre-selection semester.


Pre-selection phase: Enrol in prerequisite courses in the first semester, also called pre-vet. This is open entry, so long as you meet university entrance requirements.


Professional phase: Based on your performance in the pre-selection semester, you may be offered a place in the remaining nine semesters of the BVSc.

Learn more about the BVSc degree