True privilege to be in this profession

Externship Project

I didn’t grow up envisioning myself to be a veterinarian, but I always remember sitting in the library, fascinated by the books I read about animals, and watching Animal Planet until my sister would fight for the remote control. My parents would bring me to the Ocean Park in Hong Kong and the Beacon Hill Children’s Farm in Victoria, B.C. every time we visited. I also remember my dad would make up stories with different animal characters and I would ask him to continue, one after the other. It wasn’t until high school when I had the opportunity to complete a co-op placement at a veterinary clinic that I discovered my passion for the field of veterinary medicine.

I very much enjoyed seeing clients bringing in their pets and hearing the stories that they share. The empathy, compassion, and trust shared between clients, patients, and veterinary teams are what drew me in. Of course, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Just like everything else, struggles and frustration sometimes come into play, but the supportive environment and teamwork and, of course, seeing the patients’ recoveries and clients’ relief make it all worth it. 

It’s a true privilege to be in this profession - to be in a position to speak for our animal patients, to hear the voices of our clients, and to work alongside many amazing veterinary team members.

I came across this Externship Blog Project in my first year at OVC, and it really gave me a lot of insight – both in my professional development and on a personal level. It reminds me that I am not only a student veterinarian, I’m also a daughter, a sister, a proud pet parent, and many other roles. As I struggle through reading radiographs, learning about many different diseases, and juggling school-life balance, I was reminded that I have many colleagues on board with me. It’s a precious project and I am glad to be part of it – allowing me to share my journey in the upcoming months (plus many cups of coffee, tea, struggles and laughter).

For my externship, I will be traveling up north and spending my time with the Timmins Animal Hospital. As they devote themselves to the pet’s health and happiness and high-quality equine care, I am very excited to join and learn from the team. It will also be an amazing opportunity to explore the Northern part of Ontario, and I can’t wait to share my experience there with everyone!