Join HSVMA for the 2021 Online Animal Welfare Symposium for Students!

Registration is FREE for all attendees!

Saturday, October 16, 2021 

8:00 am - 3:30 pm PT

The Animal Welfare Symposium is generously sponsored by:

HSVMA's partner for disability insurance

and HSVMA's partner for professional liability insurance:



HSVMA will host our 7th annual Animal Welfare Symposium for Students online again this year.  With the theme of Access to Care, we will present five live lectures and two networking events.  The live lectures will include a brief Q&A period after the speakers(s) have concluded their presentations.  The networking sessions will provide the opportunity to chat with the speakers and other attendees in an informal and relaxed atmosphere.  Although geared towards veterinary and veterinary technician students, veterinary professionals and affiliates are welcome to attend.  CE credit will not be available.  (A certificate of attendance will be provided to all attendees.)  

Registration is FREE for all attendees!   You do not have to be an HSVMA member to attend the symposium.  After completing your registration, you will be sent a link in your confirmation email where you can access all of the lectures and networking events on Saturday, October 16 via Zoom (see agenda below).  Please note that the Zoom links will not go live until October 16th.  After the live date, registrants will be able to access the recorded lectures on-demand through December 31, 2021 via the HSVMA website.  The networking events will not be recorded.          

Check out our event on the HSVMA Facebook page. Please feel free to share information about our event with any fellow veterinary professional students who may be interested in attending.  We look forward to seeing you there!


8:00 - 8:15 am PST:

 Welcome: Why Access to Care Should be a Priority for Veterinary Professionals    

Presented by Dr. Barry Kipperman

8:15 - 9:15 am PST:

Providing Quality Medical and Surgical Care in Resource Limited Settings     

Presented by Dr. Ahne Simonsen and Kara Gniewek, CVT

A case-based approach will be used to discuss management of common and challenging medical and surgical cases in a resource-limited, field setting.  The use of incremental care, spectrum of care, and preventive techniques to facilitate increasing access to care will be discussed via cases treated by the Rural Area Veterinary Services (RAVS) field team. Concepts including cultural humility and the use of a family-patient centered approach to improve animal and human wellbeing will be presented. Presenters will share real life experience demonstrating limited-resource settings can have high quality clinics.

9:30 - 10:30 am PST:

White Privilege in Animal Welfare and the Communities We Are Leaving Behind     

Presented by Dr. Nellie Goetz and Sonia Hernandez

The pandemic proved difficult for animal welfare.  When we rallied our communities to help, they responded in unprecedented ways.  The shutdowns provided animal welfare the opportunity to assess the programs that we've worked so hard to implement: Are we providing for those who truly need us and are we doing all that we can do?

10:45 - 11:45 am PST:

Spay/Neuter: Integral to Access to Care      

Presented by Dr. Phil Bushby, Dr. Emily McCobb and Aimee St. Arnaud

Access to care is one of the most important challenges facing our field, and we’ve much to learn from our longstanding work with high-quality, high-volume spay/neuter clinics. In most instances, the answer is not wellness care OR spay/neuter services, but wellness care AND spay/neuter services. 

12:00 pm - 1:00 pm PST:

 Pets of the Homeless (Not Homeless Pets)     

Presented by Dr. Michelle Dally

An estimated 7 percent of all homeless individuals own pets.  That's tens of thousands of pets not on the radar of most shelters. rescues, clinics or advocates.  Learn about the wide range of challenges that homelessness brings to veterinary medicine and how you can improve the welfare of these pets and their people.

1:15 - 2:15 pm PST:

      Prioritizing Problems With Horses in Transition:  How Access to Care Can Keep Horses in Their Homes      

Presented by Dr. Stacie Boswell

Keeping at-risk horses in the homes they have is ideal, and Dr. Boswell will discuss the most common problems that can be alleviated by providing assistance to owners. Client education and assistance is a critical component of restoring health to horses in a neglect situation.


Networking Sessions

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm PST:

Choose from two different topics and discuss issues important to you with other veterinary and veterinary technician students. The networking session topics are:

• What Would You Do? Presenter Dr. Nellie Goetz: Everyday there are real-life, "newsworthy" situations involving access to care in shelters and veterinary clinics.  We will discuss these cases together, not to judge or place blame, but rather to consider the impact of situations like this at our own organizations, and to learn from the experiences of those who have dealt with situations like these.  Come prepared to discuss your own experiences.  

Advocating for Humane Alternatives in Veterinary Training Presenters: Dr. Vera HeidolphDr. Lorna Grande and Dr. Barbara Hodges




 Please direct any questions about this year's symposium to [email protected]