HSVMA holds 8th Annual Animal Welfare Symposium for Students at UC Davis SVM

Recordings of the lectures and panel discussion can been accessed by HSVMA members here through the end of February 2023. 

November 2022

By Heather Schrader, RVT

Program Manager, Student Outreach

HSVMA was excited to be back in-person for our 8th annual Animal Welfare Symposium for Students.  The event took place on Saturday, October 22, at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and was cohosted by the school’s Behavior Medicine and Animal Welfare Club.  Five travel stipends were awarded to vet students traveling from schools across the country.  Veterinary and veterinary technician students attended a full day of exciting welfare lectures.  Topics included mental health in the veterinary profession; farm animal welfare and the welfare issues of humane depopulation; reducing patient anxiety in the vet hospital; pain prevention, assessment and treatment in shelter patients; welfare and enrichment of pinnipeds in rehabilitation; and access to veterinary care. 

A panel discussion about advocacy during and after veterinary school was held before lunch.  The panelists were able to shed some personal insight about how they advocated for themselves and their patients while in school.  Attendees asked some great questions and, hopefully, gained some skills to help them move forward with issues at their own schools and advocate for animals as professionals. 

Before breaking for lunch, HSVMA Board President and symposium speaker, Dr. Barry Kipperman, presented the 2022 Humane Achievement Awards to two of the panel participants.  Dr. Gwendy Reyes-Illg and Dr. James Reynolds were recognized for their strong commitment to promoting farm animal welfare and the resulting significant advancements. 

The symposium ended with a smaller group of students participating in a Rural Area Veterinary Services (RAVS) suture lab.  This hands-on opportunity provided information about volunteering at RAVS clinics and the suture and surgical techniques used in the field.  The one-on-one teaching advances their skill levels and boosts confidence!

After the symposium ended, students, speakers and HSVMA staff convened at a local brewery to discuss the lectures and issues that were brought up during the panel discussion.  We received some great feedback and may have secured a location for next year’s symposium – TBD! 

Recordings of the lectures and panel discussion can been accessed by HSVMA members here through the end of February 2023.  

HSVMA would like to thank the continued support of our sponsor Total Planning Veterinary Services, our partner in disability insurance.  You can find more information about their program here.

HSVMA is proud to provide this free symposium every year and bring together veterinarians and students who are dedicated to animal welfare.  The Animal Welfare Symposium will return in 2023 at a new location, hopefully at a vet school near you!