Historic class of 2012

The first class of students from the University of Calgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine’s four-year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program are graduating this cheap cialis online week.

Launched in 2008 to meet the need for veterinarians in rural Alberta, production animal, equine health, public practice and research, the faculty’s vision is to bring innovation and community together to advance animal and human health.

One of only five veterinary programs in Canada, the school offers a unique combination of practical and theoretical education with a strong emphasis on the professional and clinical skills. Instead of using a traditional on-campus teaching hospital, the students spend their fourth year in a series of practicums in dozens of veterinary practices in Alberta that make up the Distributed Veterinary Learning Community (DVLC).

“When I got into the program I felt like I had won the lottery,” says Katherine Sparkman, one of the first class of graduating students.

The 30 students in the first graduating class have an exemplary academic record; they all passed North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (required to practice veterinary medicine in North America) on their first attempt, beating the typical first-time pass rate of 90-95 per cent.

Roy Lewis has seen their skills first hand as one of the dozens of veterinarians in the DVLC. Lewis had 16 different students cycle through his clinic, the Westlock Veterinary Centre.

“The real huge advantage to me is in (DVLC) practice they see day-to-day life and day-to-day cases that they’re going to do when they graduate. That’s 80 per cent of what we do and they’re confident in it and have the dexterity and skills to go along with that.”

Nearly all the students have jobs lined up, with more than half of the class working in a rural environment, says the dean of veterinary medicine, Alastair Cribb. “We are really proud of our students,” he says. “Their success is due to the commitment and expertise of our many partners in the veterinary community as well as our outstanding faculty and staff.”

The students are also thrilled to be part of the faculty’s first graduating class. “I feel so proud and honoured to be a part of this new school,” says Melissa Tannahill. “I feel ready to be a veterinarian.”

Lewis is looking forward to working with his former students and new colleagues. “I am going to relish the day we can sit and visit at conferences,” he says. “I am sure they are going to start teaching me stuff pretty quick.”