Saturday, December 20, 2008

Vet-Medlink 2008

I've been to Nottingham this week at the Vet-Medlink Conference.
I went up on the train with a few of my friends and it was a really good few days.
There were 3 of us doing the Vet-Medlink course - Me, Chris and Jen and a few more people from school were doing Medlink.

The three of us were in rooms next to each other in Newark Halls at Nottingham University and we were also put in the same lecture groups.
The rooms were alright - it had an ensuite in a cupboard in the corner, but I can't really imagine living in there for a year or two. 
I'd have to have it full of my own things and pictures all over the walls to make it feel like my own.
The campus itself was really nice, even though it's not where the Vet students are based.

It was all lecture based, covering all things vetty; from hamsters in a small animal vet, all the way up to elephants in zoos.
All of our lectures were held in the same lecture theatre and most lecturers used powerpoint presentations as well as showing us case studies and other pictures.

Lots of things were covered, from getting into Uni (in the UK or abroad), life as a vet student and what to expect working as a vet, then other things like behaviour, The Horse Whisperer and running a Holistic practice.
I thought that some of the lectures were just there to be sales pitches -particularly RSPCA and St. Georges University in Grenada obviously trying to convince us to spend money and study in the Carribean, but they were still interesting to hear what people think.

We had "The Edge" session, which went on until the early hours of the morning and was really interesting. The lecturer was really enthusiastic and inspirational, he told us about interviews, personal statements, work experience and how to stand out from the crowd. One example he used was for girls to wear something that stands out like one girl wore a red beret to her interview!

I met loads of new people aswell and also met up with some people I'd spoken to on the related forums before we went.
It was good to talk to people who all had something in common and was the first time I'd been with so many people who all wanted to be vets which gives you something to compare yourself against.
It was quite interesting because there was a huge mix of people, some who had a vets practice in the family and had been working there part time for 10 years, as well as running the farm and riding 6 horses, playing instruments and learning languages; others who had done 1 day in a cattery and then came on this course to see if they could become a vet.
It makes you think about things and some of the stories people come up with, whether they really are super humans or if its all a bit of an act.

The way it was done crammed lots of things into the day so you always had something to do and although we weren't doing anything physical everyone was really tired at night, so you could either eat on campus, or we just ordered pizza between the 3 of us and then went to bed at 11ish because we had to be up at 7am!

Last night there were a lot of people wondering around halls so we got talking to a group of girls from Wiltshire and sat talking to them for a few hours. We had a case histories test today and were given a list of diseases, one of the girls had a few old vet books with her, so we worked out what a few of the cases off the list were ready to be tested tomorrow.

I also bought a newly released book called 'Vet School' while I was there, written by two vet students called Christopher Shivelton Queen and Matthew James Swaffield who were speakers on the course.
We got a change to speak to them after their lecture and they both seemed like really nice people, really helpful answering questions and from the first couple of pages it seems a good read!

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