Mar 2, 2013

Learn what it takes to become a Veterinarian at the 2013 AAVMC College Fair

If you’re a high school student considering pre-professional programs in veterinary medicine or if you’re simply curious about what it takes to become a veterinarian, consider attending the ninth annual Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) Veterinary Medical Career Fair and Information Sessions scheduled for Sunday, March 10, from 2:30 to 5 p.m., at the Westin Hotel in Alexandria.

Representatives from national and international colleges of veterinary medicine will be on hand to offer advice and answer questions about veterinary medical careers and the credentials necessary to attend any of the AAVMC member institutions.

“This continues to be the largest recruiting event in the nation for students interested in veterinary medicine,” explained Lisa Greenhill, AAVMC associate executive director for institutional research and diversity. “Hundreds of students, parents, and advisors attend each year to make important connections to colleges. And this year’s event is shaping up to be the biggest yet!”

Veterinary medical careers can range from companion animal care to military veterinary medicine, shelter practice or options in public health where there are shortages of veterinarians. And some of the best-known programs in the country are expanding to meet these needs—28 accredited vet colleges have increased their class size in recent years, some by up to 50 percent according to Inside Higher Ed.

For high school students, the choice of undergraduate school could possibly fast track acceptance to many of these veterinary medical colleges as opportunities exist for early admission to DVM programs by bypassing completion of the BS.

This year’s AAVMC event will offer four information sessions in addition to the college fair. Dr. Kay Russo, a dairy practitioner from Colorado, will talk about large animal medicine and working in rural areas.  Dr. Jean Richards will conduct a session on working in the military on One Health issues.  Tony Wynne, from the AAVMC office will provide important information for students intending to apply to vet school in the next one to two years, and Jennifer Mailey from Cornell University will talk to high school students about what to look for in an undergraduate program if they are considering applying to vet school.

Colleges participating in this year’s fair (as of today):
  • Auburn University
  • Cornell University
  • Drexel University
  • Iowa State University
  • Kansas State University
  • Michigan State University
  • North Carolina State University
  • Purdue University
  • Royal Veterinary College—London
  • Tufts University
  • University College Dublin
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Tennessee
  • Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine
  • Western University of Health Sciences
“Visitors to the college fair should be sure to ask about summer programs and how to get meaningful veterinary-related experiences while still in high school,” added Ms. Greenhill. “Young researcher programs are also available with undergraduate ‘feeder’ opportunities at some vet schools.”

This is a wonderful event strongly supported by the AAVC—a real step up from the average college fair.  And there are prizes!  “We are debuting another set of limited edition t-shirts this year,” said Ms. Greenhill.  “They can’t be purchased, but students may earn a t-shirt if they ask questions during the sessions or answer questions correctly during the sessions.”  

And no, parents can’t ask the questions!

Students are strongly encouraged to register in advance. Last year’s event was extremely well attended, and registration helps conference organizers do a better job. 

By the way if you can't attend, you can find some amazing information on how to become a veterinarian on the AAVMC website, including tips on how to finance a veterinary education. Check it out!

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