For the majority, if not all, of veterinary schools require at least some externships or preceptorships as part of the clinical curriculum. Of course, most of this off-campus time is spent in one of the many areas of veterinary medicine practice. But what if I was to tell you that there is another type of veterinary experience you can get that doesn’t involve any clinical medical practice? And better yet, this experience can sometimes count as an official externship or preceptorship towards your degree. I’m referring to a great program offered by Live Oak Bank, the “Live Oak Bank Veterinary Student Program.” I participated in this program in my second year, before I entered into my clinical rotations. The one or two-week program is founded in gaining a solid foundation in veterinary business management, marketing, and finance. If you’ve ever thought about managing, owning, or just wanted to know more about the business world as it pertains to vet med, then this program is for you. I highly, highly recommend it to any and all veterinary students.
Here are the details*:
- One or two-week program
- Housing, transportation to and from the bank, and most food provided by Live Oak Bank (students are responsible for getting to Wilmington)
- Each session has approximately 5 students from varying veterinary schools
- Takes place at Live Oak Bank headquarters in Wilmington, NC
- Each day is filled with various workshops like finance 101, business planning, strategy, communication, loan processes, and more
- Weekends are free to explore Wilmington
- Participation in the program is based on an application process
Here are my highlights and take-aways from the program:
- Amazing networking with other veterinary students and Live Oak Bank professionals
- Great practical information regarding reading financial statements and how to actually get a loan for a business
- You learn the basics of running a small business and the pros and cons of being an owner of a veterinary practice
- You get to see how the bank makes decisions on who to give loans
- Builds your confidence if you want to go into practice ownership one day
All in all, this is a great, intensive program that provides incredibly practical information and the opportunity to practice some of this “soft skills” that we aren’t really taught in veterinary school. Learn more about the program here.
*Some details of the program may be different or updated.