FAQ: Small Animal Rotating Internship
Weaknesses: Time focused in medicine, surgery, community practice, and emergency duty. Case numbers lower than in the past due to the economy.
- What is your residency placement rate? It depends on the discipline, and ranges from 60-100%. We do not release placement rates by discipline.
- Is there time available to do a research project during the internship?
There is time; however, this is a clinical appointment and any time spent on research would be above and beyond time dedicated to clinics (i.e., evenings and weekends). There are faculty who have ready projects which can be completed in a timely fashion by interns, and enthusiastic and dedicated interns have successfully completed research projects during the year.
- Is it possible to schedule time to go to conferences (e.g. VCS) and visit potential residency programs?
Yes. The interns get 10 vacation days over the year of the internship. Service schedule permitting, these can be taken at any time, for personal or professional travel.
- What qualities do you seek in an intern candidate?
The selection committee members rotate on a regular basis, and each member has his or her own specific criteria. In general, we look for individuals who will be dedicated, cooperative, and clinically capable.
- What do you consider to be the strengths and weaknesses of the program?
Strengths: Dedication to teaching throughout the hospital, availability of a wide range of specialists from whom to learn, positive working environment, reasonable expectations on interns, strong support for interns from faculty.
- Are there any current interns I could contact about the program?
After reviewing this FAQ sheet, we encourage you to have one of our current interns address any remaining questions. You may contact our VIRMP internship program coordinator, Brooke Hogan Spurlin (firstname.lastname@example.org) who will put you in touch with a current intern.
- How is the emergency service (day and night) structured? How many weeks does the intern spend on emergency?
The emergency shift goes from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m. on the weekdays and 6 p.m. Friday to 8 a.m. Monday (divided amongst the interns) on the weekends. There is an Emergency/Critical Care intern assigned to duty until 10 p.m. who is available to help support the intern directly. There is also a very active backup system consisting of knowledgeable residents, and their faculty backups.
Interns must call backup for each case during the first six months, and may continue to call backup as needed for the remainder of the year. Interns spend two to three blocks of three weeks each on emergency duty.
- How many “other” rotations is the intern allowed to choose?
Each intern has two elective blocks during which he/she may rotate anywhere in the hospital, generally in specialty services not included in the core, although core disciplines may also be taken during these times. Each intern gets one of these elective blocks before December.
- In the past, have couples been accepted at UGA?
No. This is not for any policy reason, it just hasn’t happened that way. We have ranked individuals who were members of a couple before.
- Have two interns from a Canadian veterinary school been accepted into the program before?
We evaluate all candidates individually and rank them based on their individual characteristics. Sometimes this means we rank many individuals from the same institution, sometimes none. UGA has a long history of accepting interns from non-U.S. veterinary schools.
- Do you recommend a site visit?
The purpose of a prospective intern applicant (applicant) visiting UGA is primarily for the applicant’s benefit. During a site visit, you will be exposed to hospital procedures and culture so that you have a basic understanding of what working as an intern at UGA would entail.
You will spend time with interns on two different services, to get their perspectives, and there will be a question-and-answer period when you can get more detailed information about the program from the faculty. However, we do not consider visitation when we rank our prospective interns. The dates for the site visits will be available when the VIRMP description is posted.
- May we contact any of the internship selection committee directly?
It is generally preferred that you not contact the members of the intern training committee (composition of the selection committee is not publicly available). However, if you have remaining questions after reading this FAQ sheet and contacting one of our current interns, please email these concerns to Ms. Spurlin.
- Is there any flexibility in terms of spending more time on a service of interest?
Yes. Presently the interns do two to three blocks of each of their core disciplines. If you express a certain interest in one of those disciplines, you will be given three instead of two blocks of it. You also have elective blocks to spend more time in a discipline of interest. Every attempt is made to enable interns to spend as much time as possible in their areas of interest. The schedule is created to provide interns with rotations as early in the year as possible on services they are interested in pursuing (i.e., future residencies).
- What special instruction (journal club, etc) is provided for interns?
Interns have rounds every Monday and Wednesday morning with the faculty. Each meeting involves journal club or didactic instruction on a specific topic of relevance to the intern class. A one-hour, hospital-wide lecture series (Grand Rounds) occurs on Friday. Both large and small animal faculty and house officers attend. Lectures are given by residents and interns.
Many services also hold various activities in order to fulfill residency requirements (i.e., specific journal clubs or topic rounds, conferences with radiology, anatomic pathology, and clinical pathology [cytology rounds]). When possible (typically while working on that service), interns attend.
- Are interns required/permitted/encouraged to do any public speaking and/or teaching?
Each intern is required to present a 20-minute presentation during Friday morning Grand Rounds. Interns are constantly involved in student teaching when on the hospital floor, and an interest and aptitude in teaching are valued.
- How much primary case responsibility are the interns able to have?
This varies from service to service. Interns take primary case responsibility when they are on the internal medicine and community practice rotations, which are core rotations and make up a substantial part of the internship. On other rotations, the amount of primary case responsibility varies with caseload, number of residents, and the individual intern’s comfort level. While these variables play a role, all faculty members make a concerted effort to provide interns case responsibility and engage interns into the activities of the service.
- I am interested in applying for an internship at the University of Georgia. However, my DVM is not RCVS or AVMA recognized. Will this affect my application?
UGA has a long history of accepting international applicants as interns. State licensure is not required, and faculty licensure can be obtained by qualified personnel from non-AVMA-accredited veterinary programs. Our interns are technically considered graduate students of the University of Georgia, and as such some of the admissions criteria are governed by Graduate School policy. That information appears in our VIRMP program description.
- I am a veterinary student and would like to visit UGA to do an externship on a specific service. How is this handled?
You should contact our Office for Academic Affairs. While here, you can discuss the internship program with our current interns, residents, and faculty.
- I am a veterinarian and would like to visit UGA to do an externship on a specific service. How is this handled?
This is handled through the office of Continuing Education. You can contact them directly to arrange a paid preceptorship.