Close to the finish line

March 2019

With just a few months left of veterinary school and all of my required rotations completed, I am on the downward slide to graduation. I have one two-week rotation remaining at ISU CVM and six weeks of swine preceptorships throughout the Midwest. The amount of knowledge I have gained in these past four years and the number of cases I have been exposed to has been unimaginable.

I am currently off for this two-week rotation to attend the 2019 AASV Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla. The conference isn’t two weeks long, so I am using my spare time to get caught up on doctor and dentist appointments, visit wedding venues back in Wisconsin, and planning baby showers for both of my sisters. Fourth year is definitely what you make of it! I tried really hard to not miss a day on rotation because I was paying to be there, I didn’t want to make my rotation mates cover for me, I wanted to avoid the headache of getting approval, and ultimately I didn’t want to make up a day.

At ISU CVM, you are allowed up to eight weeks of time off, some students use all of it and others use none of it. I would say to just use what you need, whether it’s for a vacation, mental break, studying for boards, preceptorship, wedding, interviews, it is at your own discretion. One note on preceptorships is that you chose whether or not you want to take them for credit. In order to get credit, you have to complete some paperwork and write a report about a case you saw. Otherwise, if you already have enough credits to graduate you can use your time off to go on preceptorships without the paperwork. Some students despise the paperwork, so they decide to take an ISU CVM rotation twice for credit.  For me, my preceptorships and hosts have all been amazing and well worth the additional paperwork.

My latest preceptorship was at Fairmont Veterinary Clinic in Fairmont, MN. The clinic is unmatched in their years of experience and are now swine and beef cattle focused. The veterinarians and support staff were extremely welcoming and personable. This was my first experience with a swine clinic versus an integrated system, so I found the variety of business models, barn set-ups, in-house laboratory, and personalized treatment/vaccination protocols extremely beneficial. Each veterinarian at the clinic also has their own niche including genetics, nutrition, water treatment, vaccination protocols, etc. I learned a lot in my short two weeks with the clinic, but I also learned how much I have yet to experience and learn as a soon to be graduate.

Until next time,

Megan