Rhiannon, Class of 2021
When did you decide to pursue veterinary medicine?
My mother is a small animal general practice veterinarian, so I grew up around the profession and always wanted to help animals. I truly knew it was the right path for me in undergrad when I was taking higher-level science classes and was immersed in the pre-veterinary world. Also, at that time, my job at a local veterinary clinic allowed me to experience the lifestyle the career would provide from a different perspective than my mother’s, and I knew it was for me.
What did you do to prepare for veterinary school?
I focused on my schoolwork and aimed for learning as much as I could and doing well in my classes. I also worked at a pet store in high school and various veterinary hospitals during undergrad, and when I had time, I volunteered & shadowed at as many animal-related places as I could. I tried to have a diverse range of experiences by shadowing in equine medicine, farm animal medicine, and specialty small animal hospitals including surgery and oncology.
What advice to you have for high school or college pre-vets students who are interested in becoming a veterinarian?
Do not listen to anyone who tells you that you cannot be a veterinarian! I was told to have a backup plan because I might not get in, and that just made me work harder to pursue my dream. Whatever you set your mind to, you can accomplish, no matter how many obstacles are in the way!