Why I love being a Vet Student at Surrey

Hi everyone, my name’s Amy and I’m a vet student! I went through two rounds of vet school applications and am now in my 4th year studying Veterinary Medicine. The University of Surrey was my top choice both times and I’m so glad it was. The last 3 years have been absolutely incredible and I would recommend the course here to anyone interested in becoming a vet. In this blog, I’ll be telling you the top 3 things that helped me make my decisions.

Uni of surrey vet student in blue uniform scrubs
The last 3 years have been absolutely amazing!

1. The Facilities

Surrey was a brand new vet school back in 2015 complete with brand new vet school buildings! There are 3 buildings exclusively designed for the teaching of vet students meaning every single detail has been planned out to help us maximise our learning. For example, our Veterinary Pathology Centre, which is where we learn anatomy and practice skills such as ultrasound and dentistry, is also a working commercial pathology centre meaning we can complete our 4 week Veterinary Public health placement on site. This building also cost £11 million so you know it’s completely state of the art and no expense has been spared! 

The same level of care is also the case for both our Clinical Skills Centre and the Vet School Main Building. You can read more about the facilities we have access to as vet students here.

Inside of VSM (vet school main building) atrium with staircases, comfy chairs and hanging decorations
It’s very inspiring being able to study in such beautiful modern spaces

2. The Course Structure 

The spiral curriculum we have in place at Surrey means that every year you are building on your knowledge foundations you have learnt in previous years. For me, this has meant that everything has been easy to understand and I’ve felt it always been appropriate for the level of care and medicine I was ready for. The idea of this structure is to boost competency and confidence which are essential attributes for any vet.

Our fifth year at Surrey is also spent on rotation with partner practices. This is where you get immersive hands-on experience practicing the role of the vet in a safe and secure environment designed for learning. These rotations are also great for figuring out where you’d like to look for work in the future – what animal and what sort of medicine for example. I get to pick which partner practices I attend next year soon and I can’t wait! If you want to read more about our course structure, check out this page.

Uni of surrey vet student wearing blue scrubs cuddles a her own dog
Practical experience is at the heart of learning at Surrey – here’s me having a cuddle after a clinical placement

3. The Support 

This point is not specific to the vet school, I’ve found that all Surrey students are supported here at university which is a really special thing! From the amazing Employability team (making us University of the Year for Graduate Employment) to the compassionate and helpful Disability and Neurodiversity team, there are so many people at Surrey who are looking out for your wellbeing and want to help in anyway that they can. For me, the Centre for Wellbeing has been particularly helpful across my years here. A whole facility dedicated to mental health and wellbeing based on campus, they run counselling and coaching sessions which are so helpful! 

The centre for wellbeing building located on Stag Hill campus
The Centre for wellbeing – an amazing benefit of studying here!

Being a student can be stressful and vet school can seem particularly tough at times. It’s so helpful feeling so supported in my studies and the help I can access really helps me achieve the best performance I can across the board. You can find out more about the support services offered at Surrey here, you can also check out another blog I wrote about managing health conditions at university using the support available. 

Narrowing this blog down to just 3 points has been very challenging! A special mention must go to the social side of being a student and our incredible Veterinary Society! Being a vet student has allowed me to have so many incredible opportunities and I really feel that I get to make a real difference to the world. I couldn’t imagine completing this journey anywhere other than Surrey. Hopefully, this blog has shown you a small taste of why! Be sure to check out our student Instagram to see what myself and other students get up to on a day to day basis and, if you are applying to Vet Med this year, good luck!