Here are some answers:
1) Is it hard to get into vet school? I've heard it's harder to get into vet school than medical school.
never tried to get into medical school, I'm not sure about the
comparison BUT I can give you some quick tips on getting into vet
Be true to yourself. If you go chasing experiences just so they can
stack up on your application, that will be readily apparent and you
won't be having much fun. Fun is key.
Take your time. Yes, you can race through undergrad and go to vet
school early, but there's some necessary how-to-be-a-person learning
that happens in college. Don't miss out on that.
Make yourself into an awesome person, and enjoy the process. This
matters more than grades, recommendations, scores, or any one other
component. If you try to gather all the pieces to build the picture of a
perfect applicant, it is ever so much harder than living an interesting
and balanced life and allowing the pieces to fall into place.
Get good grades, but not at the expense of your health or happiness.
If you get some B's (or even C's), you're not totally fucked. Don't panic.
Get great recommendations. Ask for them well ahead of time.
Study vocabulary for the verbal component of the GREs, and study the
basics for the math component. Get a book (or two) and practice,
Research the prerequisites of the schools you're considering well ahead
of time. Make sure your transcript matches. If your advisor tells you a
class will "count", check. Don't take her word for it.
If your advisor tells you to apply right away/to wait a year or two to
apply, make up your own mind. She may or may not have your best
interests as her first priority.
Revise your application essays. Revise them again. Sleep on it.
Revise them again. Send them to all the mentors, family members and
friends who you think will have good suggestions on how to improve
them. Revise them again.
Sleep, breathe and smile. Remember to be a person.
2) Is vet school itself hard?
Do not go to vet school if you're not sure that you want to be a vet.
However, (I'm told) it will be worth it. Yay!
3) What kind of vet do you want to be?
want to be an oncologist. When I came to vet school, I wanted to be an
equine surgeon. Before that, I wanted to be an equine sports
4) There are veterinary oncologists?
Yes! Animals get cancer, and there are indeed veterinary oncologists.
5) Why would you want to be an oncologist? Wouldn't it be sad?
Well, that's an excellent question!
I began vet school, I had absolutely no idea that oncology was
interesting. I think I vaguely knew that it existed, but that was it. I
knew that I loved horses, so I chose all of my elective classes based
on that fact (hello, Equine Anatomy!).
Then I realized
that most of the oncology patients were cheerful and charming. Mostly,
you'd never know they had cancer. I fell in love with one in particular
- a gentle, aged, white-muzzled fellow with multiple cancers and
metastatic disease everywhere. I studied with him while he got his
palliative treatments. He'd eat canned chicken morsels from a paper
I learned that cancer is fascinating. And, cancer is a series of chances:
it's a chance to outlive all expectations. It's a wager to be the
bouncy Collie with lymphoma, still in a complete remission three years
after diagnosis. If the lovely Golden has metastatic disease in his
lungs, it's a chance for his owners to make every day wonderful. Once
there's nothing to be done, cancer is a chance to die attended by one's
It seems to me that there's a valid place for a wildly optimistic person in oncology, and it is something I would love to do.
6) Do you compost?
yes I compost! It's very easy. Since I live in an apartment, I collect
my compostables in a little metal bin over the course of a week or so,
and then I carry the bin downstairs to the compost pile. It doesn't
smell, and my garbage output has dwindled spectacularly.
7) What kind of bike do you ride?
Generally, I ride a black Surly Cross-Check.
We've had numerous adventures together, including a fundraising century
ride around a large, narrow lake. My Surly is fancy, sturdy and agile,
and I couldn't ask for a better bike.