Educating the Veterinary Students of Tomorrow
It’s now the end of October: its half term for people at school;
vet school applications are in for year 13s; and year 12 vet school
hopefuls are starting to travel up and down the country looking at
where they might spend the next five year chapter of their lives.
As a veterinary student ambassador, I have been pretty busy recently greeting people, answering questions, smiling and chatting about the ups and downs of my roller coaster of a course at the University Open Days. Having worked for a handful of such days so far, I have noticed one or two patterns in the questions I’m being asked. So here is a short summary of the Vet School FAQ’s.
1) Is it true you’re in the city for 3 years?
Obviously this will differ from vet school to vet school but here at Liverpool we are in the city centre for over half of our time at uni, before moving over to the same area as the teaching hospitals. I guess as an applicant there is an appeal to being right in the same area as where all the magic happens right from first year, but I personally don’t feel disadvantages in any way by not spending my days near the hospitals. I feel confident knowing I have the theory and practical teaching well before I’m given any clinical responsibility.
2) How practical is the course?
Very! It still amazes me how much even as a baby vet I can already do! From clinical skills, to lambing basics, to ultrasonography, to sampling techniques, chances are if there is an appropriate practical to link to your lectures then the vet school will find it!
3) Do you have to do placements in your holidays?
Yes, I’m sorry but you won’t find yourself with anywhere near as much free time over the summer as your non-vet friends! At least 8 weeks of your holiday time each year will be spent bedding up, feeding animals and trying to find the farmer who keeps disappearing. Don’t worry though, most of us love it!
4) Do you really have as many teaching hours as the medics?
This isn’t a myth either! We have roughly 30 hours per week. Veterinary Science is such an intense course with a vast volume of content to get through each week. Trust me, you’d be panicking if you had fewer lectures.
5) Do you get any free time at all?
Of course! Our school is not trying to run us into the ground and so long as you are organised and stay on top of your studies (I.e. beat the procrastination!!) there’s no reason why you can’t watch your favourite TV series, play your instruments or go out with your housemates on a Friday! It’s super important to still have ‘you’ time!
6) Is it Difficult?
There is no such thing as an easy degree, but for all it has a scary reputation, Veterinary science is not that hard conceptually. What makes it difficult, is the volume of information you suddenly find yourself swimming in. Just keep calm, stay organised, don’t be frightened to ask for help, and remember- everybody is in the same boat!
Vet Student Blog 1 - 'So you still want to be a vet'