For Mark, the best part of the DVM is the hands-on nature of the course

When I began my journey at the University of Melbourne as a Bachelor of Science student in 2013, I wasn’t sure what to expect. As the undergraduate degree at Melbourne was flexible, I was able to explore my different interests which ranged from animal physiology, pharmacology and even human nutrition.

My original plans were focused on sitting the GAMSAT and then applying to study medicine. But as I progressed through my science degree, I discovered my passion for physiology and pharmacology. Together with my love for animals, I began looking into alternative postgraduate options other than medicine and turned my eyes to the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM).

Meet Remi - a Rhodesian Ridgeback mix

I sat down with the University’s career advisers and restructured my 2nd year subject selections to ensure I had the necessary prerequisites to apply for the Bachelor of Science accelerated pathway into the DVM.

Fortunately, my hard work paid off and I was accepted into the accelerated pathway in 2015. This enabled me to complete my 3rd and final year of my science degree while starting my 1st year of my DVM course. The biggest difference during my transition between these 2 courses wasn’t necessarily the workload and expectations, but rather the size of the cohort. The DVM cohort was much smaller which provided an environment that was much more conducive to developing strong friendships and we also received extra support from the faculty.

The highlight of the DVM has definitely been the hands-on nature of the course. The practical component of the DVM makes it unique, and we begin our training to become veterinarians from day one. Additionally, we’ve had the opportunity to go on placements which exposed us to not only our small companion animals, but all the production systems/animals. In my first year, I undertook placement at a dairy farm and it provided me a much greater appreciation for Australian farmers and the hard work that goes into producing milk (which I’m sure we all take for granted sometimes).

On placement at a horse training facility which also rehabilitate kangaroos

On placement in a small companion animal hospital. Placement is always more fun when there are kittens around.

On placement at a bird boarding facility. This is Louis, a red-tailed black cockatoo a nice relaxing shower.

Even though I haven’t 100% decided where I want to work and which animals I want to work with when I graduate in 2018, I see myself working primarily with our smallies (dogs and cats), and my hope for my future is to help maintain the health and welfare of our loving companion animals.

You can learn more about Mark’s experience at The Vet Society where he shares his DVM journey. Follow his adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

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