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Student Perspectives
The Student Perspectives blog is a fresh and realistic snapshot of the life of veterinary medical and biomedical science students.
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Applying to Veterinary School

Applying to Veterinary School Howdy Ags! Well, my senior year is finally here! WHOOP! I can't wait for the month of May because that means GRADUATION and all of my hard work will have paid off. But what am I doing after graduation, you ask? Well, I am currently applying to veterinary school. (I'm actually working on the application at this very moment.) I hope to get into veterinary school here at Texas A&M, but I have also applied to the University of Florida and the University of California (UC) Davis, so either of those will be fine too! Anyways, I wanted to give you an overview of the application process if you are considering applying. I get a lot of questions on my tours about the application, so I figured I would address it now. My biggest advice to you is to start the application EARLY! You will need several months to complete it, because let's face it: we all like to procrastinate. But let me back up a second. Just to clarify, there are several different applic... (Read More)

Transitioning to Third Year

Transitioning to Third Year The transition from second to third year of vet school is still taking some adjustment. If you would have asked me four weeks ago how third year was going, I would have responded with something like, "I hate it. I am exhausted after every day and the classes are so much faster paced than in previous years." Now though, as we are about midway through our second block, my answer would be completely changed. We are starting to get more interaction with live animals: doing ophthalmic exams on horses and learning how to shoe and remove their shoes. I even got to castrate a pig last week-which to some people might not be too exciting, but as a person with strictly small animal experience, I was pretty stoked. The classes are faster paced than before, but it is now very interesting, as we are finally getting to put disease processes, symptoms, and treatments together. When previously all we had was a lot of information about bugs, drugs, and pathologi... (Read More)

Making Time to Get Involved

Making Time to Get Involved I'll admit that even after finishing five weeks of class, I'm still adjusting to life as a second year.  Compared to last year, my schedule this semester is a dream come true.  We start class at 9 am every day and I'm done with class by noon two days a week!  After such a rigorous first year, it's very tempting to only "do the minimum" and hoard my precious free time. However, vet school is more than the time spent in class and studying; it is an experience. When I graduate in just two more short years, I am confident that this program will have prepared me academically; however, I feel that it is up to me to develop myself beyond medical expertise. It's important to pursue activities outside of the curriculum to get the most out of our time here at Texas A&M.  We are fortunate to have many opportunities for involvement available here at the vet school.  All of our clubs are student-run, as are our fundraisers, the ... (Read More)

You’re in Pretty Good Shape For the Shape You Are In (to quote Dr. Seuss)

You’re in Pretty Good Shape For the Shape You Are In (to quote Dr. Seuss) There are two words going around campus that has just about every student in borderline meltdown mode: midterm exams (which ironically, are, in fact, not given halfway through the semester). It seems everywhere I turn one person or another is grieving over back-to-back exams, caffeine overdoses, or illegible class notes. It can't be denied: when testing time hits A&M, stress levels increase exponentially all around. As a third year Biomedical Sciences major, you'd think I would have caught on to when test time is approaching, but every single time I have the same reaction: "Wait, what?! A test?? School just started!" And then I proceed to whip out my planner and with growing dismay flip backwards counting the weeks since summer ended: four weeks for those of you who lost count like me. So school hadn't just started after all, apparently. With all these tests looming so dauntingly in the future, it's easy to slip into the mindset that seems ... (Read More)

Planning Fun: More exciting than it sounds!

Planning Fun: More exciting than it sounds! I have some big news for you guys-I got into vet school! In fact, I've been in vet school for five weeks now! The last month has been a whirlwind of lectures, lab, student organizations, studying, studying, and more studying. Trying to manage your time as a veterinary student is extremely difficult. The first year veterinary students are in lecture and lab for 28 hours during the traditional 40-hour work week. In addition to that class time, it's recommended that you study for 40 hours per week. Being a veterinary student is a demanding full time job! Time management is essential to make your study time count and allow personal time as well. Personal time includes some basic everyday activities, like eating, personal hygiene, running errands, working out, etc. So wait, you have to plan things like lunch, taking a shower, or running to HEB? Yes! Making sure you are efficient (multiple errands in one trip) will save precious time. Plus, forgettin... (Read More)

There Is No Time for Self-Pity

There Is No Time for Self-Pity I am officially four weeks into my third year.  I look around, and it's like I never left. Third year is buzzing. It is fast paced, it's ever changing, and it's exciting.  Everyone (and by "everyone" I mean first- and second-year students) want to know, "How is third year? Is it better?" We are all told every year it gets better. I told myself during second year that they must say that to keep us going. Third year is better, but I think it is acceptance rather than ease.  That question is not so much a question but rather a plea, "Does it become easier?" The plain answer is no.  I am not trying to be a "Debbie Downer" I am answering the question honestly. Perhaps the better question to ask is, "Did we think vet school was going to be easy?" Each year has its benefits and its downfalls. First year is great because you are officially in vet school, you are in anatomy, and you are meeting people just like you! Bluntly stated,... (Read More)

Work Hard, Play Hard

Work Hard, Play Hard Three weeks into school and the pressure is already on to get to work studying!  I usually get to enjoy the first month or so of school relaxing, but being in Anatomy and Biochemistry, I learned very quickly that my spare time needs to be spent either in the lab studying the thoracic limb of my dog or reviewing different pH and pOH equations. Despite my classes being really hard, I have really been enjoying my senior year.  Football games have always been one of my favorite things to do, and this weekend is the long awaited 'BAMA game!  It came at a good time too-after my lab practical, so no need to worry about studying over the weekend!  Anatomy lab has been a blast, though.  It is extremely hands-on, and gives me an opportunity to study at my own pace.  I don't need to worry about completing on time because if I fall behind, I can come in during open lab hours and either catch up or take that time to do some ext... (Read More)

Feeling more like a Doctor

Feeling more like a Doctor It has only been three weeks since school has started, and I am already exhausted!  I can't believe that I am already a third year veterinary student.  It seems like just the other day I was one of the "newbies," excited and nervous at the same time about starting a new chapter in my life.  Now, I am considered one of those people who are supposed to be "older and wiser."  Older, sure, but wiser, I am not so sure yet! Third year is where we start learning the medicine, practicing clinical skills, and becoming integrated into the clinics.  Third year consists of four-week blocks, each of which differs in the types of electives we are taking, when junior surgery is scheduled, and whether or not we have a clinical skills class or we are in the large and small animal clinics for a day.  My current block consists of me being in clinics on Wednesday.  So far, I have been through small animal radiology, cardiology/ne... (Read More)

Welcome Back Aggies!

Welcome Back Aggies! Howdy Ags! A new year is starting and after the excitement of the first week, it is time to settle into a routine and get to studying. For freshman BIMS majors, it's important to start finding your niche and finding an organization that you like and taking advantage of community service opportunities. It is important when applying for professional school to show that you are involved in an organization and remain active, so find something that interests you or join a professional organization. Groups for Pre-Medical, -Dental, and -Vet are great places to start if you hope to pursue that field. Meetings usually include free food-which great for our college budgets-and then professionals in that field come and talk about their journey and what they do within their specific practice. I joined the Pre-Medical Society, and I liked hearing different points of view and how people choose their particular specialties of medicine. Besides getting involve... (Read More)

Not-So-Mythical Free Time

Not-So-Mythical Free Time Howdy! Now that two weeks of my second year of veterinary school have been completed, I am so happy to be able to say the "mythical free time" of second year that we heard about all the time as first years is actually true. As second years, we don't start class until 9 am (hooray!), and my classmates and I are done with class at either noon or at 3 pm two days a week. It is completely different from first year, when most days we spent our time in class every day from 8 am to 5 pm and then had to come home and study at night as well. Don't get me wrong: I still study in the evenings, but with the flexibility in our schedule I can use my time wisely and study in the afternoon and actually have a night off every once in a while. Another difference between first and second year is that this year our class is the guinea pig for a new addition to the curriculum called Veterinary Spanish. With the growing number of Spanish speakers living in Texas ... (Read More)