My Last Semester in a Classroom

Brandi M.I’ve just started my last semester in the traditional veterinary classroom curriculum. It’s honestly a little weird to think that by this time next year I will have been in a hospital setting for more than half a year and will be just months away from being able to call myself “doctor.”

Over the winter break, I worked at a clinic that I have been at for years. These doctors and technicians have known me since I was a young, wide-eyed pre-vet student in undergrad, and I joke that they basically raised me in this medical aspect of my life.

During this break, I found that the doctors included me more in discussing patient treatment plans and case rounds and technicians would ask my opinion on diagnostics in comparison to the things that I have learned thus far in veterinary school. It’s an interesting situation to find myself agreeing or questioning medical decisions that I am asked to fulfill because I now actually have some limited understanding of the application of medicine.

While that’s super exciting and I’m so relieved that I’m relatively competent in the field that I have pursued for most of my life, I’m also realizing the amount of responsibility that I’m going to be handling in the near future.

I’m gearing up to start applying for big-kid jobs, refining my resume and making connections with future employers; I’m coming to terms with my financial situation once I graduate: salary negotiations, budgeting, and payment plans for my student loan debt.

But I also feel more appreciation for the dedication this school has to its students. It’s more than just making us DVMs; I appreciate that we have started an entire course dedicated to these “adult responsibilities,” in which we meet with financial advisers and veterinarians who want to help us overcome these life hurdles. I was so worried that I would be thrown into the real world and told to figure out all of these incredibly important things, but, instead, I am going to at least get some explanation of what is needed and expected of me.

Part of me still feels like a child being dragged kicking and screaming into the adult world. Yet another part of me feels a little less lost knowing that, so far, my education has, for the most part, stuck well enough for me to understand most medical practices. That side of me is excited to start the last leg of my education and to reach my childhood goal of becoming a vet.