We are very pleased that our ongoing advocacy efforts on behalf of the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program recently resulted in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture awarding nearly $6 million in loan repayments to 62 veterinarians across the country. This initial round of awards will go a long way toward helping ease the nation’s shortage of rural veterinarians. As federal officials begin the process of awarding the second round of loan repayments, the AVMA continues to play a role in ensuring that the program runs smoothly and is meeting our nation’s needs.
That’s why we’re interested in hearing from folks who applied for the first cycle of awards earlier this year. Specifically, we are interested in your overall experience and impression of the application and selection process. What specific improvements are needed to enhance the process for applicants? How did you learn about the program? Did you have enough time to complete and submit your application packet? Were the application materials clear and understandable? For those applicants who were not awarded loan repayment this year, do you plan to reapply in 2011? Was the limitation of applying to only one shortage area acceptable to you?
Any feedback from applicants is welcome, and we’ll share your thoughts with the officials in Washington, D.C., who are responsible for running the program. If you have opinions you’d like to share, please send them to Gina Luke, assistant director in the AVMA Governmental Relations Division, at firstname.lastname@example.org.