Student externships in veterinary medicine

My experience with veterinary medicine started at a rural single veterinary mixed animal practice in my Amish hometown. In the years since then, I have been fortunate enough to gain more mentorship and experience from all types of veterinarians including those at a cutting edge small animal oncology center in New England, an equine rehabilitation center in Kentucky, and small animal practitices across several states.
 
My career as a veterinarian began at Banfield Pet Hospital in Raleigh, NC. I also work as a Veterinary Consultant for Ask.Vet which allows me to provide live chat advice and education to clients across the country regarding their pets’ health.
New Wilmington Veterinary Services

New Wilmington Veterinary Services

This was the very first clinic where I ever learned veterinary medicine. I started working here back in middle school and spent many years in the clinic and driving around town learning about rural mixed animal medicine. To this day, I still call Doc a mentor and friend.

North Memorial Animal Hospital

North Memorial Animal Hospital

This small animal clinic in my hometown was the second place where I learned about medicine. North Memorial was my first real exposure to more modern medicine and showed me more about what small animal exclusive practice is like.

Finchville Animal Hospital

Finchville Animal Hospital

I spent a summer at Finchville Animal Hospital in Kentucky to get a chance to practice more ambulatory equine medicine. Of course, there was still small animal medicine mixed in, but it was here that I learned about the Thoroughbred industry and theriogenology.

Veterinary Cancer Center

Veterinary Cancer Center

After researching ovarian cancer in undergrad, I developed a passion for oncology. I traveled to Connecticut to spend time at a top oncology center so I could explore the idea of being a veterinary oncologist. There, I learned how to guide owners through diagnosis, treatment, and loss. Veterinary Cancer Center also taught me how to redefine cancer for clients.

Live Oak Bank

Live Oak Bank

A two week externship at Live Oak Bank during my clinical year of veterinary school taught me more about about practice ownership including financing, marketing strategies, taxes, practice construction and design, and business plans. We were also trained extensively by an acting coach in personal and public communication skills. In my two weeks there, I created a business plan for adding a new service to a practice and completed persuasive public speeches, including one in front of bank leaders.

Banfield Pet Hospital

Banfield Pet Hospital

Banfield Student Job Program gave me the opportunity to learn more about preventive medicine and business management, including inventory management, staff scheduling, and practice finance. The position exposed me to the inner workings of a corporation.

CAH

CAH

The last 8 weeks of Auburn's clinical year consist of hands-on experience working in a practice of our choice. I elected to work alongside Dr. Jerry Suddeth of Crestwood Animal Hospital. There, I delved deeper into exotic animal medicine and hospital management while still developing my clinical skills with dogs and cats.

Cytology and Clinical Pathology

Cytology and Clinical Pathology

I love the immediate satisfaction of looking at a sample under a microscope. Cytology has always intrigued me, and I took two advanced electives in clinpath and cytology to get even more practice beyond our regular courses. I also dedicated two additional full weeks of clinical rotations to independent study and individual mentorship from our clinical pathologists to improve my clinpath and cytology skills.

Reproductive Techniques

Reproductive Techniques

Auburn's theriogenologists are nationally recognized for their expertise, so I jumped at the chance to take an advanced theriogenology course which covered topics including synchronization protocols, embryo grading, superovulation and flushing, cryopreservation, fetal sexing, and more. I was able to practice my rectal palpation skills, fetal sexing, and semen collection and freezing techniques.

Ultrasound

Ultrasound

In addition to coming to the school before classes to review ultrasound techniques during an extra class, I am also taking an ultrasound rotation. In the class, we practiced abdominal ultrasounds every week and even began practicing echos. I dedicated two full weeks to improving upon my ultrasound skills with the guidance of board-certified radiologists.

Food Animal Medicine

Food Animal Medicine

In addition to working on my family's Simmental cow-calf farm, I took a course on food animal medicine in school which exposed me to carcass evaluation, Beef Quality Assurance, Tritrichomonas cultures, and suture patterns in food animals.

Equine Ambulatory

Equine Ambulatory

I was active in the local AAEP chapter, participating in labs covering topics including splints, trans-tracheal washes, radiology, dentistry and field necropsies. I also took a semester-long extra elective course called "Filling the Gap in Equine Knowledge" in which I learned more about general equine practice including lameness exams, nerve blocks, limb ultrasound, dentistry, farrier work, rectal palpation, vaccination protocols, and more.

Dechra Pharmaceuticals

Dechra Pharmaceuticals

As a second year I earned a position as the student representative of Dechra Pharmaceuticals. In this role, I learned more about dermatology and available products than I did anywhere in my curriculum. I distribute samples to students and teach them all about the products and how to use them properly. It is because of this experience that I feel comfortable with teaching clients about dermatology and how to properly use products. I also learned more about what it means to work in industry.