Graduates from seven UK vet schools were joined by graduates from across the world as they embarked on the next stage of their veterinary careers. A total of 100 new vet graduates came together for a two-day induction to mark the start of the Vets4Pets and Companion Care 2018 Vet Graduate Development Programme.
New for this year, the programme offers graduates additional support and mentoring from 22 Joint Venture Partners who will serve as Talent Ambassadors. Appointed based on their leadership skills and desire to support the next generation of vets, the Ambassadors will coach the graduates, share their experiences and help them learn from their successes. The ambassadors played an integral part in the induction, facilitating small group sessions under the guidance of a highly-experienced leadership development consultant Vicky Curtis, who is one of the UK’s leading experts in mindful leadership.
Catriona Curtis, veterinary talent manager for Vets4Pets and Companion Care, said: “We know the transition from vet school to the first job in practice can be both exciting and daunting for students. At Vets4Pets we’re really passionate about doing things differently and bringing in expertise to support our graduates from both within and outside the vet profession. The approach to the induction is just one example of that.
“All graduates have been individually matched to a Vets4Pets or Companion Care practice according to their individual requirements such as location, culture fit and personal learning objectives. Many of them already had great relationships with their practices after EMS placements, and the top reason graduates join the graduate programme is because a friend or peer has recommended the programme.
“With more than 450 Vets4Pets and Companion Care practices of all shapes and sizes across the UK, graduates have a wide choice for the practice that suits them best. As they are all are owned and run by joint venture partners (JVPs) who have clinical freedom and the autonomy to do things their way, graduates also have a range of clinical options to learn from.
“We’re dedicated to helping new graduates thrive and want to help set them up for success regardless of what they go on to do with their careers. The programme is continually evolving, and our aim is for it to be one of the best graduate programmes in the UK across all sectors, not just veterinary.”
Nikkea Roberts, a University of Edinburgh graduate, said: “I really like the ethics of Vets4Pets and Companion Care, and how the team cares about the welfare of its vets and new graduates. That’s really important to me. It’s great that I’ll have the support I need as I start my vet career.”
For 2019, Vets4Pets and Companion Care have plans to increase the number of its graduate vet placements to 120.