Eddie Baker: USA – Class of 2013
Why did you choose to study at The University of Edinburgh?
When I was applying to veterinary schools, I used a shotgun approach and applied to 14 different institutions. I was drawn to Edinburgh because the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies has a great reputation, is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and is located just outside the city. Studying at Edinburgh also gave me the opportunity to live overseas for 4 years. I ended up being accepted to 5 schools in the US, Canada and Ireland but Edinburgh seemed like it was going to be the best fit.
How did the R(D)SVS contribute to your career choices?
I knew that I was most likely going to be a small animal veterinarian from the outset and that is how things ended up. However, I surprised myself by really enjoying farm animal medicine. The exotics department was great too and once I graduated, I saw exotics frequently. I changed jobs and the practice I work at now does not see exotics so I no longer see these cases either.
What is your present occupation?
I'm currently an associate veterinarian at a bustling 6 doctor practice in Boston. I love where I am. I get to do lots of surgery and internal medicine work ups. Who knows? Maybe I will buy into the practice soon too!
Did your EMS placements help you in determining the field of veterinary medicine you wanted to pursue professionally?
My EMS placements helped a lot when I was studying for exams because I learnt about conditions and cases that I could recall when they were relevant. As far as helping to determine my career, I would say that they had some impact but mostly helped to determine which field I did not want to pursue.
If you could offer some advice to prospective students what would it be?
I would say that they should be absolutely sure that this is the career path they want to pursue. It's a great profession but it is also a challenging course and once you graduate it can be a demanding career with a large amount of financial debt. So be prepared mentally and financially. I would also tell prospective students that almost everyone has to resit at least one exam. Don't let it get you down!
How would you rate the support staff?
Great! The atmosphere at the vet school is overwhelmingly supportive. Many of my current colleagues describe their own vet school days as extremely competitive and at times brutal. Although the course at Edinburgh is rigorous, the staff and other students are supportive and helpful.
Although the course at Edinburgh is rigorous, the staff and other students are supportive and helpful.