When did you last think back to your university days? For some of you, your time in the halls of academia may seem like only yesterday, but for me it is the dark, distant era of the 80s and 90s.
During a sunny blast from the past when attending my daughter’s Masters graduation ceremony at Cambridge University, I couldn’t help but be transported back to my own days in Cambridge: anatomy practical classes, embryology lectures and the long hard cycle to the vet school in the wind and rain, weighed down with enormous textbooks from the library.
Despite all its challenges, university gives us the opportunity to learn from the brightest, most passionate minds in the profession and gain knowledge that stays with us forever. So, it was a pleasant surprise that a dog walk during lockdown turned into a fortuitous meeting with a trustee of the Cambridge Veterinary School Trust which in turn resulted in the creation of an exciting online CPD learning experience – the Veterinary Academy Series.
This would give postgraduate practitioners access to both the ground-breaking research being carried out at Cambridge University and teaching from the clinical teams at the veterinary school hospitals
Together, we decided to collaborate on a plan to bring evidence-based CPD direct from the Cambridge Veterinary School to veterinary practitioners around the world. This would give postgraduate practitioners access to both the ground-breaking research being carried out at Cambridge University and teaching from the clinical teams at the veterinary school hospitals.
Remote meetings began in earnest and five globally recognised teams were formed:
- Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS). This team has been investigating respiratory disorders in brachycephalic canine breeds over the last 10 years and has produced pioneering research
- Canine and feline oncology. This team delivers training on topics such as feline lymphoma, mast cell tumours and the latest techniques in oncologic surgery
- Canine and feline cardiology. Specialisms include myxomatous mitral valve disease, dilated cardiomyopathy, feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and congenital heart diseases.
- Canine and feline neurology. Experts in teaching neurological examination, diagnosis and treatment of seizures and vestibular disorders and intervertebral disc disease.
- Equine oncology. The Cambridge Equine Hospital has specialists in equine internal medicine and surgery and the director Anna Hollis is the only equine vet in the world to hold an MSc in clinical oncology.
Two years later, the first Veterinary Academy Series was launched by Improve International which is delighted to be working in association with the University of Cambridge Department of Veterinary Medicine. The series is split into five month-long “semesters”, each covering one of the above subjects and awarding 12 CPD hours.
Many globally recognised specialists are participating: Jane Dobson, Paul Freeman, Laura Owen, Jane Ladlow, Nai-Chieh Liu and Jose Novo Matos, to name but a few.
All the speakers have been recording their engaging lectures at the Moller Institute in Cambridge for all the veterinary professionals who would like to come on board the series. There will be plenty of opportunities to speak with all of them directly through a live webinar in each semester and discussion forums throughout. You will also gain access to the department’s latest, cutting-edge research and much more.
The series is perfect for vets in general practice and is also open to veterinary nurses… all in all, it welcomes all veterinary professionals with a passion for lifelong learning
The series is perfect for vets in general practice and is also open to veterinary nurses (BOAS and Canine and Feline Oncology may be particularly suitable for nurses running their own clinics or working in referral hospitals). All in all, it welcomes all veterinary professionals with a passion for lifelong learning.
So, while I beamed with pride at my daughter in the University of Cambridge grounds, I could not help but remember my most charismatic university lecturers and their passion for learning which contributed to my own move to working with Improve International and wanting to make CPD learning more accessible to the many excited students who are entering the next stages of their career.
If you are looking for some engaging online CPD direct from university and delivered by inspiring speakers who are at the top of their field, join us for the Veterinary Academy Series, starting with BOAS in May 2022.
I hope to “see” you there!