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Externships

Two different externships are available within the veterinary department at the Vancouver Aquarium. As an extern you will have the chance to apply your academic learning to real-life situations under close supervision of a veterinary professional.

Students will have a short-term experiential learning opportunity and gain an understanding of what it is like to be involved in a particular career field as well as make valuable professional connections. 

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Externships

Veterinary Externship

The Veterinary Externship program is open to students who will be in their clinical year(s) of veterinary studies at the time of their stay at the Vancouver Aquarium.

In this externship, student responsibilities include:

Veterinary Medicine:

*       Assist veterinarians and veterinary staff with monitoring cases, participating in daily rounds,
        developing treatment options, and diagnostic and surgical procedures as required.
*      Maintain complete patient records.

Please Note: Students should be aware that the number of clinical cases requiring hands-on care is low at a public display facility and the majority of time is spent developing health management programs for the collection animals. Students should be prepared to take advantage of unsupervised “down time” to read relevant literature and pursue learning objectives.

Husbandry:

*       Each student is required to assist husbandry personnel with their duties.

Science:

*       Each student is required to participate in necropsies including record keeping, data entry, sample taking and storage, and cleaning. The student is also invited to assist with ongoing research projects.

Laboratory:

*       Duties include processing blood samples, water quality analysis, and performing routine laboratory analyses.

Stranding:

*       Assist the Marine Mammal Rescue program with the rescue, transport and care of stranded marine mammals as required. The student will spend at least one day every week at the rehabilitation facility.

Project:

*       Students will be responsible for doing a literature review on a veterinary topic of their choice relevant to the Vancouver Aquarium externship experience. They will present their findings to the veterinary and husbandry staff during their last week in the form of a ~20-40 minute PowerPoint presentation.

Eligible applicants should be:

*       Currently enrolled in a veterinary program and in their clinical year(s) of veterinary studies at the time of their stay at the Vancouver Aquarium
*       In good academic standing
*       In good physical shape (able to life 25kg with ease) and be comfortable working both indoors and outdoors in all weather conditions

Externship Dates: Veterinary Externships are offered from April 1 to October 15 of each year. Students should plan to spend two to four weeks at the Vancouver Aquarium. Priority for choosing time slots is according to rank during the selection process.

 Application Period: Veterinary Externship applications are due by March 30, ONE year prior to the planned externship. (For example, applications for 2019 externships are due by March 30, 2018.)

Students will be notified of their acceptance into the program by June 30th, one year prior to the planned externship. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Learn more about the Veterinary Externship

Veterinary Technologist Externship

The Veterinary Technologist Externship program is open to students who will be in their final year of study in Veterinary Technology from an accredited institution.

In this externship, student responsibilities may include:

*       Set up for treatment and surgical procedures
*       Laboratory procedures, including sample collection, processing and paperwork shipment to outside laboratories
*       Maintenance and cleaning of hospital areas, equipment and supplies
*       Assist with necropsies, including sample collection, storage, and record keeping
*       Observe and participate in ongoing research projects
*       Research animal anatomy, physiology, medical techniques, common diseases, challenges with keeping and treating these species, status in the wild
*      Assist the veterinarian and technologists in surgical and medical cases as needed
*      Accompany veterinary staff on rounds
*      Assist staff at Marine Mammal Rescue Centre (seasonal)

Eligible applicants should be:

*       Currently enrolled in their final year of study in a veterinary technician program from an accredited institution
*       Intending to pursue a career in aquatic and exotic animal medicine
*       In good academic standing
*       Extremely self-motivated with a desire for continuous learning
*       Able to work well in both independent and team settings
*       In good physical shape (able to life 25kg with ease, work in tight spaces, and stand for long periods of time), and be comfortable working both indoors and outdoors in all weather conditions
*      Comfortable around blood and medical procedures

Practicum Dates: Veterinary Externships are offered from March - Sept of each year. Students should plan to spend two to four weeks at the Vancouver Aquarium. Number of students accepted per year varies.

Application Period: Veterinary Technician Externship applications are open from Sept 1st – Nov 15th prior to placement dates. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Learn more about the Veterinary Technologist Externship 

 

 

Contact Us

If you are interested in carrying out an externship placement with us please contact practicum@ocean.org for further information.

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97 percent of all animals on Earth are invertebrates. 
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