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Career Challenges

Fall 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Veterinary Nursing as a Military Spouse

Caitlin Murphy RVTg, BAS

Caitlin is a military spouse of 6 years to an active duty Marine and currently stationed with her husband in Okinawa, Japan. She graduated with her AAS degree in veterinary technology in 2018 and has recently graduated with her BAS in veterinary nursing. She now serves as a member of the Red Cross in the prefecture of Okinawa where she provides veterinary aid during natural disasters, such as seasonal typhoons. Caitlin is also pursuing a master’s degree in veterinary medical sciences online at the University of Florida.

Military spouses who work as veterinary nurses face many obstacles in advancing their careers, but they can succeed due to their unique qualifications and several resources designed to help them along their journey.

Summer 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Nutrition Coach Certification: Helping Pets Live Long, Vibrant Lives

Kara M. Burns MS, MEd, LVT, VTS (Nutrition), VTS-H (Internal Medicine, Dentistry), Editor in Chief

Kara Burns is an LVT with master’s degrees in physiology and counseling psychology. She began her career in human medicine working as an emergency psychologist and a poison specialist for humans and animals. Kara is the founder and president of the Academy of Veterinary Nutrition Technicians and has attained her VTS (Nutrition). She is the editor in chief of Today’s Veterinary Nurse. She also works as an independent nutritional consultant, and is the immediate past president of NAVTA. She has authored many articles, textbooks, and textbook chapters and is an internationally invited speaker, focusing on topics of nutrition, leadership, and technician utilization.

Nutrition is becoming increasingly important to both veterinary professionals and owners. Becoming certified and establishing yourself as the point of contact to clients will ensure optimal results.

Spring 2021, Practice Management

Handling Angry Clients

Jamie Rauscher RVT

Jamie is an RVT from Atlanta, Georgia. She works in a general practice/emergency room practice as the Medical Manager of a staff of almost 70. Currently, Jamie is the President of Georgia’s Technician and Assistant Association. She has her Fear Free Elite Certification and Human Animal Bond Certification, as well as her Animal Hospice and Palliative Care Certification. Her interests include client education, pain management, anesthesia, patient care, and emergency and critical care. Jamie has presented several case reports at national conferences, spoken at her state technician conferences, and has numerous blogs published. She is married, has a son, as well as a golden retriever and 3 cats.

Unfortunately, angry clients are likely part of your everyday routine. Knowing how to best handle them is a skill worth perfecting.

Winter 2021, Personal/Professional Development

Elevating the Human-Animal Bond

Beckie Mossor RVT

Beckie is a Registered Veterinary Technician living in Southport, North Carolina. Beckie graduated from Central Carolina Community College in 2007 with her AAS in Veterinary Medical Technology and will graduate from the University of North Carolina Pembroke with her Bachelors in Non-Profit and Public Administration in 2019. Beckie has enjoyed a diverse career in small animal, large animal, and mixed practices; academia; and management and consulting. Beckie co-founded Veterinary Advancement, is a professional medical responder with the ASPCA Field Investigations Response (FIR) Team, is Volunteer Director of Operations 3K9 Working Dogs, and co-hosts the podcast Veterinary Viewfinder.

Certification programs help practitioners incorporate the human-animal bond into daily care.

Fall 2020, Public Health

One Health: Many Roles, Shared Goals

Beckie Mossor RVT

Beckie is a Registered Veterinary Technician living in Southport, North Carolina. Beckie graduated from Central Carolina Community College in 2007 with her AAS in Veterinary Medical Technology and will graduate from the University of North Carolina Pembroke with her Bachelors in Non-Profit and Public Administration in 2019. Beckie has enjoyed a diverse career in small animal, large animal, and mixed practices; academia; and management and consulting. Beckie co-founded Veterinary Advancement, is a professional medical responder with the ASPCA Field Investigations Response (FIR) Team, is Volunteer Director of Operations 3K9 Working Dogs, and co-hosts the podcast Veterinary Viewfinder.

Veterinary professionals may not immediately recognize their role in environmental health through their work in the veterinary industry, but as is the case with all elements of the One Health Initiative, there is an important contribution from every health and science discipline.

Summer 2020, Practice Management

Wellness Resources for Veterinary Professionals

Jamie Holms RVT, CPT1

Jamie Holms has 17 years of experience in the veterinary field, most in emergency and critical care. Prior to that, she was an animal control officer and a veterinary team manager for a 24-hour practice in Los Altos, Calif. She is currently the administrative manager for Dr. Andy Roark and Uncharted Veterinary Conferences. Jamie is passionate about mental health and suicide prevention in the veterinary community and is a firm believer that education reduces stigma and increases survival. She is a certified Mental Health First Aid responder, QPR gatekeeper, and certified gatekeeper instructor. Jamie is an administrative rock star, organizational aficionado, tea geek, and workaholic.

Veterinary practices need to start putting employees’ wellbeing as a priority, but it’s up to both workers and management to implement change together.

Spring 2020, Practice Management

Stop Workplace Cyberbullying

Michelle Guercio-Winter CVT, CVPM, CVJ

In her 35 years in the profession, Michelle has worked in every paraprofessional position in veterinary practice. She began in hands-on animal care positions, but shifted to the business side when she realized a passion for veterinary business. The need for veterinary business knowledge was nationwide, which was the impetus for creating the Patterson Veterinary University program, which has educated many veterinary professionals since 2006. Michelle is currently responsible for the education and development of practices owned by the Encore Vet Group, a group whose focus is to elevate and empower the people providing animal care.

Cyberbullying has the same effects, and should have the same repercussions, as traditional bullying or harassment. Read this article for insight on how to manage workplace bullying in your practice.

Winter 2020, Personal/Professional Development

Critical Thinking in Veterinary Trauma Care

Megan Brashear BS, RVT, VTS (ECC)

Megan graduated in 2000 with a BS degree in Veterinary Technology. She has enjoyed working in emergency and critical care since 2000 and is currently the Small Animal Veterinary Nursing Manager at the Purdue University Veterinary Teaching Hospital in West Lafayette, Indiana, where she oversees the technician supervisors as well as teaches and trains technicians and students on the hospital floor. She loves the opportunity to travel and lecture, sharing her knowledge with veterinary nurses and technicians around the world.

Trauma is a common event in veterinary hospitals and can result from a number of sources. Not every trauma patient is the same and the veterinary nursing team must be ready to anticipate patient changes and treatment orders. This quick and accurate response requires critical thinking skills.

Fall 2019, Personal/Professional Development

Are You the Bully in the Workplace?

Michelle Guercio-Winter CVT, CVPM, CVJ

In her 35 years in the profession, Michelle has worked in every paraprofessional position in veterinary practice. She began in hands-on animal care positions, but shifted to the business side when she realized a passion for veterinary business. The need for veterinary business knowledge was nationwide, which was the impetus for creating the Patterson Veterinary University program, which has educated many veterinary professionals since 2006. Michelle is currently responsible for the education and development of practices owned by the Encore Vet Group, a group whose focus is to elevate and empower the people providing animal care.

News accounts and personal stories about bullying are being reported in increasing numbers. While often considered a middle- or high-school problem, bullying in professional workplaces is a common occurrence too and chances are you’ve witnessed it in action.

Summer 2019, Exotic Medicine

Unique and Unusual: Exotic Animal Medicine

Sarah Kolb BAS, RVT, VTS (Exotic Companion Animals)

After obtaining her Bachelor of Applied Science in Veterinary Nursing from St. Petersburg College in 2018, Sarah earned the Veterinary Technician Specialty (Exotic Companion Animals) in 2015. She currently works at ISU Lloyd Veterinary Medical Center, Ames, Iowa. She is a member of the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, Central Iowa Veterinary Technician Association, and International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. She also serves on the Association of Avian Veterinarians Technician Committee. Sarah has had numerous articles published and she has lectured extensively on exotic animal topics. She has fostered birds for the Des Moines Animal Rescue League since 2014. Her interests include avian anatomy, physiology, behavior and enrichment; wildlife rehabilitation; and anesthesia.

The surge in ownership of exotic animals has contributed to an increase in owners seeking veterinary care for their pets. Veterinarians and veterinary nurses are finding themselves faced with providing medical care for nontraditional pets, which presents unique challenges.

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