The Early Career Development Committee (ECDC) previously announced the recipients of the 2014 Veterinary Leadership Conference (VLC) scholarships, funded by Zoetis. These veterinarians had an amazing time and wanted to share their experiences with you! Continue reading to see what they learned and how attending the VLC has impacted their future.
Dr. Danielle Johnson (IL ‘02) writes: “My experience far exceeded my expectations. At the Emerging Leader networking event the first night, I was immediately impressed by how positive and friendly this group of veterinarians is. I was able to shake hands with people I had only met in cyberspace.”
“The general meetings were extremely educational for me. Although the learning curve is steep, I left appreciating all the hard work done by others that I have taken for granted the first 11 years of my career. Certain members of our profession have taken their time, talent and often their own money to do their best to make sure our profession is living up to the highest standards and has the most opportunity for future success. I will no longer take that lightly.”
“As a business owner, it is important to me to look up from my desk, get out of my clinic, and get a different perspective. It helps me identify the areas where I can improve my skills as a veterinarian and business owner. I look forward to discovering over the next few months how I can use the unique perspective attending the VLC has given me.”
Dr. Sharon Ostermann (CAL ‘13) shares her perspective: “As a veterinarian only six months out of veterinary school, I was not sure what to expect from a conference that catered to established and emerging leaders in the veterinary field… I saw this conference as a unique opportunity to make some initial and important strides towards achieving my goals.”
“I was astonished to find how relatable my career path (shelter veterinarian) was and the immediate respect I garnished from seasoned veterinarians who knew what it took to perform 20-30 surgeries per day. To my surprise, I also met two animal shelter veterinarians at the conference. We shared vital contact information for future use, and we compared protocols & procedures used at our respective shelters.”
“Aside from the connections I made, the skills development activities that I partook in were invaluable. The workshop leaders focused on not only making sure I understood my own personality and preferences, but also on making sure I understood the various ways that people function… I plan to build on this knowledge and keep it fresh in my mind as I work to establish and develop new relationships both as a shelter veterinarian as well as in my personal life.”
“Overall, aside from the skills I developed personally over the course of the conference, I can say that my experiences at the Veterinary Leadership Conference have opened my mind to the idea of being involved in organized veterinary medicine.”
Dr. Leni Kaplan (COL ‘00) states: “Attending the 2014 VLC was a NEW (Novel, Educational and Wishing for more) experience in several ways:
a. I met many new veterinarians with different backgrounds and stories about how they arrived at their current positions in our profession.
b. I acquired new leadership skills for team building both inside and outside of the veterinary hospital.
c. I had new opportunities to network with AVMA and state veterinary representatives.
d. I learned about new career opportunities in veterinary medicine as well as who to contact to become more involved in organized veterinary medicine.
e. I gained a new perspective on how the AVMA functions by being present for the House of Delegate District Caucuses and the House of Delegates Winter Session.
f. I enjoyed and was inspired by two amazing speakers (Christine Cashen and Dr. Lowell Catlett) both of whom were new to me.
Attending the 2014 VLC re-ignited my passion for our profession (both as a practitioner and
AVMA member) and made me fall in love with this profession all over again! When I applied for the Early Career Development Scholarship, I was looking for a new pair of veterinary shoes. I got them and they feel GREAT!”