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Mentoring and Networking Opportunities for Student Veterinarians

There are many different mentoring opportunities for student veterinarians:

Summer Career Opportunties & Research Exploration Program (Summer CORE Program)

Program Coordinators

Dr. Shayan Sharif, Associate Dean, Research and Graduate Studies, and Elizabeth Lowenger, Manager, Student Affairs.

The Summer Career Opportunties & Research Exploration Program (Summer CORE Program) offers BSc, DVM and other students the opportunity to enhance their time as research students at OVC during the May-August summer break.  It is in conjunction with the Undergraduate Research Assistant (URA) and Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA) programs, which offer students the chance to work with faculty on novel or on-going research projects.  The Summer CORE program provides research-oriented activities and exposure for students while they complete primary research/educational activities with faculty advisors.  The program includes a networking series with veterinarians and scientists working in diverse and intriguing areas, virtual visits to cutting-edge research facilities and the Metro Toronto Zoo (if possible), and professional development tools and workshops to prepare for conference-style sessions.

The Summer CORE Program then offers students the opportunity to share project advancements and/or results with peers and the OVC community through Poster Presentations in mid-August.

Registration for the Summer CORE Program is in early May.


Mentoring Programs

Program Coordinator

Elizabeth Lowenger, Manager, Student Affairs.

There are several mentor programs established at OVC.  Either in person or on-line, mentors will share their expertise, tips, experience and knowledge with you in order to enrich your experience as an OVC student veterinarian.  Below is a brief list of the programs: 

Career Options Mentor Program - Previous graduates' experience and career choices can help you explore different career options. They will share with you their knowledge.

Phase 2 to Phase 1 (P2P1) Guide Program

The P2 to P1 Guide program is a forum to discuss and discover life as a student at OVC by pairing first year member of a practice group with two second year student veterinarians.  You will be introduced to your two guides, who are assigned to your practice group, during orientation and there are several activities planned during the first month of school. It provides an avenue for entering students to ask questions regarding classes, textbooks, study tips, useful resources at OVC, volunteering, extra-curricular activities, and any other issues related to the DVM program.

NOTE: This program is not intended to be a counselling service to deal with highly personal issues. There are OVC Peer Helpers available through Dr. Conlon's office, as well as professional counsellors available on campus through Counselling Services, who can help you with serious life issues.

We realize some students may be more comfortable discussing student life one-on-one with an individual mentor. Please attend the Orientation Days lunches and social events to familiarize yourself with the mentors assigned to your group. Feel free to email the mentor you wish to speak with to set up a one-on-one meeting at lunch or after school.

Veterinarian Mentor Program

Every second year in the fall semester Phase 1 and 2 students have the opportunity to state what areas of veterinary medicine pique their interest. The Manager, Student Affairs at OVC will try to find a practicing veterinarian who works in an area of interest that you have to serve as a mentor. These veterinarians volunteer their time to meet and talk to the students to share their knowledge and experiences both as a student and as a practicing veterinarian.

The goal of the program is to help student veterinarians build relationships and contacts within the veterinary community so that students have a source for advice and support throughout their time at OVC. The primary method of communication between students and their mentor will be via an initial face-to-face meeting (when appropriate) followed by email.

Students will be emailed with more details in the fall.

Suggested alumni mentor activities:

  • Group chatting on Microsoft Teams, Skype, or Facebook
  • Group dinners at a local restaurant
  • Group outings such as attending the OVMA Conference or the OVC Alumni Association's CE day
  • Group potlucks
  • Volunteering at your mentor's clinic or place of work

Use your imagination! The more effort your group puts into the program, the more you will get out of the experience!