Both Dr. Gates and I understand that in order to maintain a good, upstanding, competent veterinary community, it is important for practicing veterinarians to form relationships with those from younger generations who are interested in the field of veterinary medicine. This feeling is not unique to us. The American Veterinary Medical Association has had a variety of programs in the past that have acted in a formal way to pursue these relationships, and the Ohio Veterinary Medical Association has had mentoring as an informal goal for generations.
So in keeping with both the aim of our profession as well as our personal goals, we enjoy mentoring high school juniors and seniors and college students and we welcome the opportunity to encourage able-minded students in the veterinary medical field. It is especially rewarding when we see students that spent time with us at the Clinic finish their education (usually at Ohio State) and become colleagues!
Some area high schools have formal programs, such as Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy’s J-term, that place students in professional situations for on-the-spot observation. Those students at CVCA that are interested in vet-med can see for themselves how a companion animal veterianry clinic operates by spending their time with us.
Many high schools don’t have formal programs like CVCA’s J-term, and this just means it’ll take a bit more planning on the part of the student and their family to be a part of our day. In any event, if you or your high-school/college student have a calling to pursue veterinary medicine, give us a call at 330-929-3223 and we’ll talk about the details of our mentorship program.
(For the students that aren’t yet juniors in high school, we welcome the opportunity to demonstrate veterinary medicine in an age-appropriate way. For instance, we’ve worked with Pioneer Clubs, Awana, Boy Scouts, biology classes, etc., and set up after-hours demonstrations geared to the level of the audience.)
What would a day of observation look like? High school juniors and seniors, along with college students, can expect to be treated as adults during their stay. They must dress and behave professionally. They shadow us in exam rooms to observe our conversations with our clients, they observe us during treatments and surgical procedures, and as the situations dictate, they can expect some good-natured quizzing. Especially for college students who have begun the process of applying to Ohio State’s Veterinary College, they must consider the application requirements, one of which is that two letters of reference must be submitted from non-relative Doctors of Veterinary Medicine.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, if you or someone you know is seriously considering a professional career in veterinary medicine, don’t hesitate to contact us at 330-929-3223!