Today’s veterinarians are extremely dedicated to protecting the health and well-being of animals and humans. Veterinarians are animal lovers and understand the value of animals in our families and society. However, being an animal lover is simply not enough to be admitted to vet school. There are a plethora of potential careers for animal lovers including being a zoologist, kennel attendant, humane educator, marine biologist, veterinary technician, marine biologist, and wildlife rehabilitator. Ask yourself: why am I drawn to vet medicine? What qualities do I possess that would help me become a successful vet? How do I see myself contributing to the field and my community as a future vet? Gaining experience by volunteering or working at a veterinary clinic/hospital and directly working with vets should help inform your decisions regarding a veterinary medicine career. It is also essential for aspiring vets to possess other personal attributes that contribute to a successful career in veterinary medicine. These include:
–A Scientific Mind: A student interested in veterinary medicine should have an inquiring mind and keen powers of observation. Aptitude, interest, and doing well in the biological sciences is important.
–Good Communication & Interpersonal Skills: Veterinarians must meet, talk, and work well with a variety of people.
–Compassion: Being compassionate is an essential attribute for success as it should guide humane treatment and medical decisions by a veterinarian. It is also important for veterinarians working with owners who form strong bonds with their animals.
–Leadership Experience: Many environments (e.g., clinical practice, governmental agencies, public health programs) require that veterinarians manage employees and businesses. Having basic managerial and leadership skills contribute to greater success in these work environments.
Adapted from https://hpa.princeton.edu/sites/hpa/files/veterinarymedicine-2018.pdf