Small sized animal science/pre-vet schools

I’m a rising high school senior in Maryland at a very small private school (<100 students total) I’ve had a hard time finding colleges/unis offering animal science and a pre-vet track under my specific conditions, and would love any input! :slight_smile:

I’ve transferred frequently so my cumulative GPA isn’t readily available to me until this school year starts- but I would guess in the ballpark of 3.6-3.9
I am looking for welcoming schools that are very small in size (less than 3k enrolled), but do value research and academics. Private schools preferred. Cannot have current religious affiliations.
Interested in women’s only/historically women’s schools.
I have ADHD, dyslexia, and some other conditions so disability accommodations are very important.
Majors akin to animal science like animal behavior, veterinary sci, zoology sci, etc. are OK. Having at least a pre-vet track would be much appreciated.
Cannot be in the south or California.
I won’t have standardized testing scores on my applications so school must be blind to it.
Slight tuition stress, scholarships appreciated.
I really just want to see what options are out there; so for now no worries about where I could get accepted into (probably not ivy league though haha)

Thank you for your time!
(Please excuse grammatical errors as I am dyslexic and didn’t want to review this for longer than necessary :,) )

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Is the religious affiliation piece about the atmosphere or actual beliefs? For instance, as I was reading your description, the first school that jumped to mind was Ohio Wesleyan. It’s Mission & Aims page’s first sentence is:

Ohio Wesleyan’s charter provides that “the University is forever to be conducted on the most liberal principles, accessible to all religious denominations, and designed for the benefit of our citizens in general.”

So although the school is still affiliated with the United Methodist denomination, is the continued affiliation still a problem for you?

If it’s not, then I’d definitely give this school a look. It has a zoology major (and a pre-professional zoology major) with research opportunities, internships at the Columbus Zoo, etc: Zoology Majors | Ohio Wesleyan University

There are about 1400 undergrads here, and although 56% of the student body is female, it’s not a women’s college.

I will continue to think on other schools that might be a fit for you, but it’d be great if you could clarify on the religious affiliation piece.


Hollins University has a pre-vet program that might fit your preferences for very small, women’s, private schools. Are you interested in horses? Pre-Vet – Hollins University

Oh oops – you said cannot be in the South. Well, it was a thought :slight_smile:


Perhaps see Delaware Valley in PA for variety animal health and pre-vet programs and academic scholarships.

Edited to add:
It is co-ed.


These are the 12 colleges that have fewer than 3k undergrads, no religious affiliation, and a major in either zoology, animal sciences, or some similarly related field:


If I removed the limitation on religious affiliation, it came up with 27 schools. When I filtered for women’s colleges, there were 0 results, whether with or without any religious affiliation.

If you had to give up on something, would it be the religious affiliation, or the size, or…?

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Ohio Wesleyan? Pre-vet advising, zoology major, Great school but I think they are struggling with enrollment.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the size of the college/university if you are headed into animal behavior/zoology. There are not a lot of colleges out there that offer the major and the biggest program in the country has less than 200 graduates per year, with most of them graduating much smaller numbers - even at the giant state schools. That will make a big school feel so much smaller. Check out and search by field to study to see what’s available.

Good luck!


OWU is not church governed or controlled by the Methodists: see Board affirms support for LGBTQ community | Ohio Wesleyan University

Support for the LGBTQIA+ community is what prompted a “pause” on the relationship in 2019.


Wilson College in Chambersburg, PA. Very small, historically all women, has admitted men in recent years but still predominantly women.

Some good news is that you don’t need to attend a school that has specific animal-focused majors. A standard biology major with some animal-focused electives is typical for prevet students. The prerequisites for vet school are nearly identical to those for premed, so same person often advises both at smaller schools. A typical bio major curriculum will meet most of those requirements, and you don’t need an official prevet track. I understand if you want to attend a school with more prevet students, but just want you to know you’re not limited to that.

Be sure to read this site well. Also spend plenty of time shadowing vets, and talking to them about their careers. Good luck!


Quite a range - is that unweighted?

So it may come down to weighing the personal importance of criteria (veterinary sciences vs. women colleges) - but also how absolutely committed one is, or if new passions might possibly be discovered in the first two years of college, leading to different majors.

As mentioned above, here an example how veterinary medicine is mentioned as part of generic “pre-health”:

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What site or program do you use for searches?

If you could go bigger, I would look at University of Vermont.

It depends on what I’m looking for :wink: . But the snip I shared in post #5 came from College Navigator, the feds’ website that aggregates all the data that universities submit to them. You can add search parameters by states (or distance from a zip code), presence of particular majors, college size, admission rate, whether it’s a women’s college or HBCU, religious affiliation (N/A is for schools with no religious affiliation), etc.

If you’re really interested in more about my search methods, this post might help: SURVEY: Help Us Build a Better College Search Tool - #9 by AustenNut

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I was wondering about the same thing. A relatively large school can have a small pre-vet program. It is helpful if there is a farm either on-campus or nearby, and this will again be typically much smaller (in terms of the number of people involved) than the overall university. As two examples, up near where I live both UVM and UNH are relatively large public universities, but their very good CREAM programs (which is something a pre-vet student might do over a summer) are relatively small (lots of cows, not so many people).

Pre-vet classes will however overlap a lot with premed classes, and some of these can have quite a few students in them. A lot of students start university thinking that they are premed. Many (probably most) change their mind at some point.

Funding 8 years of university in the US can be expensive. One daughter is currently studying for her DVM (she is half way through) and reports that most students in her program are taking on way too much debt. Most do not want to talk about it. If you want to keep veterinary medicine available as an option, you certainly should try to avoid debt for your bachelor’s degree and saving some money for graduate school would be good if you can do it.

Animal experience of multiple types, including some in a veterinary environment, is very important for getting accepted to DVM programs. You can get this while you are an undergraduate student, or after getting your bachelor’s degree, or both. Our daughter went with both (she had many thousands of hours of relevant experience before applying to DVM programs).

Becoming a DVM is a long path that takes a lot of dedication, and lot of hard work, and a lot of studying. It involves getting dirty, a lot of yuk, and seeing some animals die (while you are saving some others). It is the right path for some very strong students and it seems quite clear that it is the right path for our older daughter. You need to want to do it.


Check out Colby-Sawyer College. Located in New Hampshire on a beautiful rural campus. Currently co-ed, but it spent many years as a women’s college. Has a Biology major that you can customize with a pre-vet track. 1,100 undergrads.


Hi! Thank you so much for the response! Essentially, I just don’t want religion to be a main focus on campus. While I personally get put off by schools having that affiliation, places like OWU that loudly express their strive for inclusivity and diversity, could work for me. Thanks again :slight_smile:


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