One Less

Inevitably, every year we lose one or two students. Some of our classmates have had to repeat a year, joining the class of 2016. Some classmates have been forced to put vet school on pause while they tend crises in their personal lives. We’ve also gained students from the class ahead of us, as well as those returning from personal leaves. Nearing graduation in May, we are still teeter-tottering around a class size of 100. One thing I was not expecting in vet school was the shear amount of support we receive from our faculty and staff. It’s a constant source of encouragement, and somewhat of a relief to know that we have an administration that is rooting for us…all of us.

“You’ll have to work hard to fail out of this program.”

Is what we were told from the beginning…and I get it. The school will do whatever it has to in order to ensure student success.

On a sad note, we recently lost a classmate. Not lost as in passed away, but rather left the program. February, less than 3 months to graduation. It’s heartwrenching. The rumors came late, and few know who actually departed the veterinary program last week. Although I know who, there is no value in running my mouth around campus. It’s unfortunate. Only 3 months to go. If I can get through the next three months, anyone can. After coming so far, investing so much, wading in debt up to our eyeballs…3 months. She claimed it was a career change, that veterinary medicine wasn’t making her happy. I think it was more the academic environment rather than the expansive breadth of veterinary medicine that made her unhappy.

I wish she had reached out, mentioned her lack of content and found solace that she’s not alone in this vat of misery we call school. We all hit walls, we all fall down and almost all of us have gotten back up. I really feel like I could’ve encouraged and helped her get to the finish line. There’s no rule saying she’d have to practice vetmed, but to stop so short of the finish line…we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Downer topic, I know. But I very much feel that when one of our classmates struggles, it’s up to all of us to contribute in some sort of manner. And when one classmate fails, it’s really a failure on all of our parts. Really wish I had know before she made her decision. I’ve always got a pep talk in my back pocket…maybe it could’ve gotten her through this week. Because, one day at a time, one week at a time, still gets us that much closer to graduation and the light!