Finding a mentor is important when undertaking any new endeavor, this is especially true of vet med. Someone who you can aspire to emulate, not only in technical skill but all areas of the field. Blood draws, and placing catheters are an amazing achievement as is book knowledge. Being able to speak with clients and making them feel at ease is also on the mentor priority list. Luckily these qualities are not difficult to find in the veterinary world, as many people who work in the field do so out of their willingness to help others.
In our ever-advancing society, many mentors can even be found online, through social media platforms. I have noticed more YouTube video blogs dedicated to our field, some extremely technical and others lighthearted and comical. Finding a mentor that you wish to emulate is becoming increasingly easier by the day. Once a student is working in a clinical setting, there are likely to be at least one, if not more positive influences.
Once a mentor or mentors have been found it is important to let them know how much you value their time and input. Many mentors can easily recall their college days and the struggles and accomplishments that came with them. There are pearls of wisdom to be found in every graduate’s story. In time, the day will arrive when the favor of helping a struggling student will need to be reciprocated, never forget the struggles endured on the vet med path and pass the kindness of being a mentor along.