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Pre-Veterinary Medicine Program at Hope College

What advice do our alumni have for you regarding getting into veterinary school?

So I figured rather than just telling you what I think, that I would ask our alumni who are in veterinary school to give you their advice. I expected to get scores of suggestions from our 12 pre-veterinary alumni from the last 4 years. In fact, they all had the same five suggestions:

1. Take a leadership role!! As a veterinarian, it is important that you are able to convince clients, technicians, secretaries, recpetionsist and even other veterinarians to follow your advice and your lead. Demonstrate to the veterinary admissions staff that you are a leader! There are many clubs to join at Hope College from Knitting to Young Republicans....most of our alumni who went to veterinary school were officers of the Biology Club and/or Club Animalia.

Biology Club prevet studnets at the APVMA
The Biology Club (left) at the Bio Dept. field station. The Members of Club Animalia (right) at National Pre-Veterinary Symposium (APVMA).

2. Get to know your faculty! We want to help you achieve your dreams, but we cannot do that if we do not know who you are. By getting to know us, we can open up many opportunities to you that will help your veterinary school application stand out among hundreds of others.

3. Take the classes!! Cell Biology, Molecular Biology, Comparative Anatomy, Advanced Physiology, Animal Behavior...to name just a few. The "quick and easy path to just pad your GPA is bad. People here [vet school] who did that are really struggling and will probably not make the best veterinarians." Hope almumnus.

4. Be different!!! Veterinary schools aren't looking for cookie-cutter students. They want well-rounded people who have a broad range of interests to represent the veterinary profession. What's your niche???

5. Most importantly....don't stress the little things!! One thing we all have in common is that we are all Type A personalities...meaning, we stress about everything. It is important that you stay focused on your goal...to become a veterinarian!! Don't let a bad test grade get you down....one "C" in a science class will not destroy your dreams. The important thing is that when you feel like you have a problem come see me. Talk to me soon upon starting at hope College and often thereafter. My door is always open for pre-veterinary students at Hope College!!!