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Iowa Interview Updates

Discussion in 'Pre-Veterinary' started by LadyHitokiri, Dec 6, 2008.

  1. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Other people, please post your Iowa interview info here! :)

    I just had my interview today at 1pm. I took a tour of the Iowa State University College of Vet Med and also did exhibit activities (talked to the Dean, current students, etc.) The new large animal facility was very impressive. They have updated chute systems, holding pens for horses (lots!), diagnostic labs, etc. It hasn't officially opened yet, but the tour guide said it should be next semester. The small animal facility is also being renovated but I liked what I saw of their current facilities. I don't really have other Vet Schools to compare it to though, but I was impressed nonetheless. The guide was honest about things I asked him, such as about the professors (i.e. saying that some know their material but expect the students to already know it too!, but the majority of the teachers are great)

    The students were very friendly and willing to answer my questions. The Dean was warm and easy to talk to. The financial aid presenter was actually blind, and he had a seeing eye dog with him! The overall feel for the people was that they were genuine.

    Thankfully I didn't have some last minute wardrobe mishap or any other catastrophe! I had a good experience, and I wanted to know what other people's comments were about it, what they liked/didn't like, etc.
     
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  2. LVT2DVM

    LVT2DVM UGA-CVM c/o 2013
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    #2 LVT2DVM, Dec 6, 2008
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2009
  3. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Hah, it was nice to see you and halesvet there! Putting a face to a name...

    What? I didn't even know about that yellow laminated sheet! Oh well. I could have answered some of the questions better, but hey, we always look for improvement, right?

    I agree about the questions though. I had seen some of them before but didn't think of great answers for them. When it came time for the interview, I kinda just jumbled out some stuff that probably didn't answer the question but I stretched it to anyway!

    I wished we could've seen more animals too, but my tourguide was at least funny so it made the tour a bit more interesting. :laugh:

    They said we'd hear something by Feb 15th, but I doubt it's gonna take that long. At least I hope not! I REALLY don't want to wait two months after an interview to know how I did....
     
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  4. HandD42

    HandD42 ISU CVM C/O 2014
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    Thanks for the Iowa feedback...I will be applying there next year :)
     
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  5. athane960

    athane960 ISU class of 2013!
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    I interviewed on Sunday and like the others was impressed with the new large animal facilities . . very nice. I have a background in public health and infectious disease surveillance so the thing that stood out about the school is how progressed they are in that area and the opportunities that a student has to work in that area. At work, we actually use several of Iowa State's Zoonotic diseases publications!

    The people are extremely friendly!! The area is very rural and not much there . . although I did not have time to do much exploring.
     
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  6. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    I'm interested in the same field as you! :) I definitely agree, I would get a great education at Iowa, especially for the field I want to get into. Lots of options for more experience... Are you going to do their dual degree DVM/MPH program?
     
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  7. athane960

    athane960 ISU class of 2013!
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    I actually already have an MPH (yeah, I did it backwards) and worked for a year as a zoonotic epidemiologist before applying!

    My supervisor, a veterinarian/mph who formerly worked for CDC, said she knows alot of Iowa graduates in the vet public health field and they are so glad they went there, so she was really happy that I interviewed there.

    Also in our office, we have some posters and books that are put out as references from Iowa State Vet School, their CSPH program! Good luck!
     
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  8. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Oh, already with an MPH.....nice! :D

    Yeah, when I was researching schools to apply to, I picked Iowa because of several factors but mostly due to their options for public health, food safety, etc.

    Good luck to you too! :luck:
     
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  9. halesvet

    halesvet UPenn c/o 2013
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    I interviewed on Saturday, sorry for the late post ;) finals this week and whatnot

    We were given a tour of the facilities and got to talk to a student panel about any questions anyone may have had. I really loved the tour, I had never been in a veterinary school or BIG vet med facility so I was very impressed by the new facilities at ISU. We went into a typical lecture hall, typical lab, and went down into the anatomy lab where we saw some VM1s studying for their anatomy exam.

    I really did like the surrounding area (despite it being REALLY cold) and everyone there, the students, the dean, the financial aid advisor, everyone was very nice and very helpful and seemed happy to be there and happy to meet us.

    The interview was...a little nervewracking:scared:, probably because it was my first one ever. There were 3 doctors interviewing me, I was in the room for an hour answering questions and talking to the doctors. They asked questions like, "give me an example of when you: made a decision you were least in favor of, had to think outside of the box, had to make a quick decision during an emergency, broke a commitment to someone, etc"

    I think the best preparation for that type of interview is really just to have a lot of different experiences. I talked about my personal life, my research, my job experiences, my internships, the school club that I run, and my tutoring experiences. Just having lots of different things to talk about made my interview "easier?" maybe not easier but at least I had a lot of things to pull from.

    Wow, this is a really long post and I have to go study for my Evolution final today:eek:. Good luck everyone!!:luck:

    p.s. I was so excited because i got to meet LVT2DVM and Lady Hitokiri at the interview. It was really nice to put faces to names. Good luck you guys!! I wish everyone the best this year!!:D
     
  10. VAgirl

    VAgirl UC Davis SVM c/o 2012
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    The bolded questions were ones I also got last year. They might even have asked me the one about the quick decision in an emergency. Methinks they like those questions.
     
  11. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    @halesvet: It was nice to see you too! :) It sounds like you at least did a good job letting the interviewers know who you are as a well-rounded person! I didn't get to talk about some of the experiences that I thought that they should know about...but basically in order to answer my questions I talked about: my current job, a course I took, my old job, a club that I'm an officer for, a vet shadowing experience, and volunteering that I'm doing. I'm sure you did fine in your interview (more than fine)! Good luck to you too. I really hope we get a call from the Dean, all of us on the same day! Hah, that'd be sweet.

    I hope your Evolution final went well! I crammed Sunday night for an Animal Growth and Development exam that I had Monday at 9am (it was entirely on adipogenesis and adipocytes and tons of factors...IGF, GH, leptin, grehlin, the list goes on!). I was so nervous/excited about my interview and about going to/being in Iowa that I didn't study until the last minute...I literally got only a couple hours of sleep before the exam. Well, I just got my exam back and I got a 59/60! Talk about getting lucky! Hah. But even if I got a bad score, it would have been worth it. ;)
     
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  12. VeganChick

    VeganChick Tufts University V'13
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    I am sure you all did great! And I hope you don't have to wait until February! That's crazy!
     
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  13. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Yeah, me too. :oops:

    And thanks!
     
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  14. dreamvet

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    hey all. I have an interview in two weeks.

    where are these suggested interview questions to review?
    on the admin page?
     
  15. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    You can access questions that we've been asked in the *Read this before you interview* thread in this forum, near the top. For practice behavioral-type questions, I had seen someone on this forum post them...not sure who it was. You can pretty much just google 'behavior interview questions' and that should be sufficient.

    Let us know if you have any more questions! (But I am far from being the expert about interviewing, or Iowa State, or about anything for that matter...)
     
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  16. ZooNose

    ZooNose Tufts Class of 2013
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    On Iowa's "Selection Criteria" web page, they list what character traits they will be evaluating in the interview. They also pass this around while you wait for your interview in the break room: http://www.vm.iastate.edu/prospective_students/default.aspx?id=962&ekmensel=c580fa7b_76_78_962_5

    Also, it would be very much worth your while to type "behavioral interview" into Google and just browse through the numerous examples of behavioral questions listed on the web sites that pop up. Behavioral interviews are pretty uniform no matter what you are applying to (job, school, etc), and wont be specific to veterinary medicine unless you opt to answer a question with a veterinary-related example.

    Good luck!
     
  17. 237397

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    Thanks, ZooNose! I know I've seen that before, but I didn't realize then that it had interview criteria on it. I'm getting so nervous!

    I feel like I should have questions for them when I go in... as far as etiquette goes, is it okay to take notes or write down questions or organize your thoughts in a written form while you're in an interview this long?
     
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  18. ZooNose

    ZooNose Tufts Class of 2013
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    I'm sure people have varying opinions on this, but in the interviews that I have had, I would not have felt comfortable taking notes. At Iowa, for example, there are three people just staring at you, waiting for you to answer - while taking a second to gather your thoughts I think is always a good thing, I expected that they were looking for me to think on my feet. If I were writing things down after they asked me a question, I think it would have interrupted the flow of conversation (which tends to naturally take its course over a 30-45 minute interview).

    Just have concrete life examples in your head (using online behavioral interview websites as a guide) and practice ahead of time in front of the mirror or other people - that's the best advice I can give! Also, having questions for them ahead of time (even if you need to write them down and bring them) is essential too - the more interested you sound in learning more about their programs and what they have to potentially offer you, the better. :)
     
  19. 237397

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    Thanks, zoonose! I appreciate the advice. I've got a huge list of behavioral questions that I compiled from here and an even longer one that VAgirl made earlier and some more advice from a friend who's at VMRCVM right now... but it helps to hear from someone who's been there. I appreciate it!
     
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  20. elegantwhimsy

    elegantwhimsy Class of 2013

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    Hey there!
    I signed up a little late (only today haha) but I too interviewed at Iowa state during the first round. I thought it was a great experience all around, as the other girls said! : )

    As for the interview, just breathe. If you don't have an immediate answer they will usually try to prod you in the right direction with follow up questions. For me personally, I spent a lot of my undergrad time working for a struggling independent student newspaper, so that definitely provided a lot of examples for my answers! If you have one thing that you can talk a lot about, just go with that.

    And definitely have at least one or two good questions to ask them. I brought in a folder with me with a couple things printed out from the college's website, and had a few questions written down. At the end of the interview when they asked me if I had any questions, I asked them if I could refer to my notes, and they didn't mind. I asked a question about the curriculum, which one of the men went on and on about haha and they seemed impressed that I had something prepared ahead of time. So I would definitely recommend that!

    Best of luck!
     
  21. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Hey, good luck to you! I definitely agree that having questions to ask them will impress them! I know that some people talk to students beforehand, and all of their questions are answered. Even if this is so, I would definitely considering repeating some of those questions in the interview because #1 It's better to have some questions than none and #2 the interviewers might have more information than the students that you talked to.

    I only wished that I had asked more questions than I did! XD But all is well. There's 5 weeks until final admission decisions are made, and even though it is seemingly going agonizingly slow, I know that time will fly and we'll all be hearing good news before you know it!
     
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  22. cuitlamiztli

    cuitlamiztli onward and upward
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    Let's see... where to start?

    First, the interview was a very positive and low-stress experience. Two of my interviewers were practicing veterinarians and the other is a professor at the CVM. I was asked maybe 5 or 6 main questions and the rest built off of my answers. As far as the questions... tell me a time when (1) you had to take charge of a situation; (2) think outside the box to solve a problem; (3) you had to make a difficult decision that you weren't quite sure about; (4) you had to adjust to a difficult change; etc. They also asked me what made me choose veterinary medicine, why I want to go into zoological medicine (I had mentioned this earlier), and asked additional questions about several of my more interesting experiences while seeming genuinely interested in how they've furthered my interest in veterinary medicine. My advice is to relax, take a deep breath, just be yourself, and don't forget your little water bottle. And don't forget to ask questions.

    Overall, I feel that it went fairly well and that my interviewers walked away with a good sense of the type of person I am. We'll see if that's a good thing or a bad thing ;)

    As far as activities, we had the opportunity to listen to several VM3 or VM4 disease/case study presentations. The tour was very informative and my student tour guide was very enthusiastic and knew what she was talking about. As pretty much everyone else has said, the new LA hospital is very, very nice. They're also working on making the classrooms state-of-the-art--plasma screens, live chat-type interactive stuff with the students at UNL during lectures, plugs at every seat for your tablet PC, etc. The tablet PCs seem very nifty; many of the textbooks come with a virtual version to load on it, so you don't necessarily need to carry around 50 pounds of books, and you also get virtual microscope slides for histo/path. I wasn't able to attend the student panel (it was during my interview; it was very informative according to my sister) or the financial aid presentation, which was recorded and will be put onto the website.

    Finally, I think that the only thing I didn't like was it's still semester break, so there weren't that many students around and there weren't any club representatives there to talk to.

    As for hearing back... it'll unfortunately be very, very close to February 15th. Or so they assured us.
     
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    #22 cuitlamiztli, Jan 9, 2009
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2009
  23. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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    :laugh: That is hilarious. I hadn't even thought to bring one, and now I think it's a brilliant idea...

    Also THANK YOU for finding the link to the brochure, I printed it out and am going to look through it to help find some good questions to ask students/staff.
     
  24. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    cuitlamiztli, I'm glad you had a pretty good experience! ^^ Ooh, that's great that they'll be putting the financial aid presentation online. Thanks for letting us know how your interview went!

    starlene, they had given us a mini bottle of water, so I don't think you have to bring your own but you might want to just in case. I remember looking at that brochure when I was starting the application process. It's definitely worth looking at!
     
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  25. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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  26. cuitlamiztli

    cuitlamiztli onward and upward
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    Starlene: You're welcome! And, like LadyHitokiri said, they provide an 8 oz water bottle. But as far as resusable ones go--they're definitely worth the cost! I have a stainless steel klean kanteen, and I :love: it.

    LadyHitokiri: I'm glad it was a good experience, too, and I was more than happy to let you all know about it!

    Third rounders: Good luck on your interviews! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you and everyone else who's interviewed :xf:
     
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  27. Hopeful2014

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    LVT2DVM's original post:
    "O, and I liked seeing the school, but I thought the tour was BORING! :sleep: Only animals we saw were cadavers. I had hoped to see vet students working with actual patients. But for a Saturday, I guess this wasnt possible."

    I just wanted to comment on this post- I was working in the ICU/ER on the Saturday that the interviews and tours were taking place. Due to liability and confidentiality issues, they are not legally allowed to show anyone through the hospital where patients are being taken care of. Tours can also get in the way of any emergencies that may be coming in for us. I know it was probably frustrating, though! Glad to hear so many people enjoyed ISU!!
     
  28. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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    So, I finally found 5 minutes to sit down and do this!:D

    First let me say that having ISU as my first interview was great, because they really tried to put everyone at ease and the students and faculty and interviewers were very nice and for the most part quite outgoing and friendly.

    I was in the morning session but had an 11:10 interview time so had a lot of time to sit around and panic before going in to the interview room. Luckily, there were some nice prospies, current students and parents who all chatted with me. And right before I got called in, my awesome friend sent me a HILARIOUS picture-text-message that literally made me LOL in the waiting room, and after that my stress just melted away.

    The main things I didn't like were:

    1) The terrifying road conditions-- I drove w/a friend from Chicago and there were what seemed like hundreds of cars littering the shoulders of I-80 after having slid off the road... At one point a semi truck passed us going really fast, and 20 minutes later we passed the same truck, now jacknifed across the freeway! I guess my Ford Mustang won't be joining me if I move to Iowa, haha. FWIW the roads were much better around Des Moines/Ames.

    2) My tour guide was not that amazing, told us that she "hated Iowa"--even though she followed that up by saying she loved the school so much she would never transfer even if given the chance, it kind of set a negative tone. Also since she was a 1st year, there were a lot of questions she couldn't give very good answers to.

    3) The caseload levels were a little unclear, it definitely sounds like the caseloads were too heavy for their old Large Animal hospital, but it sounded like maybe equine caseload in particular was not huge, and I couldn't get a good sense of what kind of equine cases were typical.

    The main things I did like were:

    1) Accessibility of staff/student... It just seems like a really friendly community!

    2) Options to do a lot of surgical practice-- I know some people are anti-terminal-surgeries but I kinda want these opportunities before I'm in the "real world"

    3) Awesome clubs and student organizations including a canine behavior/training club!!! (I'm a dog-sports freak)

    4) GORGEOUS new LA hospital! And plans to re-do the SA hosp as well-- they also have a bunch of canine rehab facilities... Don't have an equine performance center yet (treadmill etc) which is a bummer for me (interested in sports med) but they said this was also in the works.

    5) Awesome Tablet PCs!

    So anyway, there were lots of pros, and only a few cons. I don't know if ISU would be my tip top choice but I can DEFINITELY see myself going there and having an amazing time!

    Good luck everyone!!!!
     
  29. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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    Haha by the end of the day Dr. Howard had given me THREE mini water bottles... They were all in my huge bag, and I was cracking up, I just couldn't say no every time she offered! :laugh:
     
  30. EqSci

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    I actually asked about this in my interview, because I was curious if they got a large/varied caseload even though it's in a rural area. They said the high-performance equine industry is definitely growing in the area. Three new high-class boarding barns have gone up recently, and there is also a TB racing barn/owner/something close by that uses ISU. So it sounds like they have a pretty good caseload - maybe not as amazing as some other schools, but definitely enough to get some great experience.

    They also had a TON of stalls in the new part... I can't imagine they would put that many if they didn't expect to need to use most of them.
     
  31. LVT2DVM

    LVT2DVM UGA-CVM c/o 2013
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    #31 LVT2DVM, Jan 22, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2009
  32. DVMorBust

    DVMorBust UW SVM Class of 2013
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    60? :eek:

    Does anyone know about the surrounding equine vet practices? Wisconsin has a number of them around the vet school that have stalls/surgery facilities, so people tend to only bring horses in to the vet school for emergencies and use their regular vet for other in-patient issues. Do more people use ISU for non-emergency situations?
     
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  33. LVT2DVM

    LVT2DVM UGA-CVM c/o 2013
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    #33 LVT2DVM, Jan 22, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2009
  34. EqSci

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    From what I understood when I was there, ISU does a lot of 'regular' vet work on the equine side too. They have an ambulatory practice as part of the vet school.
     
  35. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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    Thanks for the info, EqSci, that kind of stuff is exactly what I wanted to know!! It also sounds awesome, kinda what I needed to hear to push ISU back up right near the top of my list :)
     
  36. EqSci

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    No problem! It may not be exactly correct, but it's what I remember hearing.
     
  37. 237397

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    I had my interview on Saturday afternoon; I apologize for the lack of punctuality!

    I think going over the ISU interview questions here on SDN was extremely helpful. They only asked me a few questions that I hadn't seen before. One was whether I had ever seen anyone cheating. Another was why I felt I was prepared for vet school (not for being a vet, but for vet school specifically).

    I'm not entirely sure why they asked this or even whether this counts toward my interview "points", but they asked me a knowledge/current-event-based question. When I introduced myself, I explained that I wanted to do food animal/poultry medicine, so they asked me how I felt about Prop 2.

    I asked them a few questions, too, and they were all very patient and straightforward with me. They shared some of their personal experiences with the school (before and after graduation), and it was really cool to hear that.

    The interviewers were all very nice, and the ladies in the admissions office were also very helpful!

    I agree with starlene; the tour wasn't great, but it was cool to see the new LA facilities! We might have had the same tour guide, too. The chick was from CA, which may explain why she hates Iowa. Personally, I loved Iowa. I became inexplicably sad as I watched the snow-covered landscape disappearing behind the clouds from the window of the airplane.

    Overall, I really liked ISU! I think I might be able to tolerate the cold if I do get accepted... :xf:
     
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  38. starlene45

    starlene45 UC Davis SVM c/o 2013
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    Hmm don't think we had the same tour guide, I did meet two girls from CA but they actually said they really liked it there :laugh:. And I have to say there was something kind of awesome about driving around in the snow, past these little farms... When we weren't sliding on the ice that is :eek:

    Glad you had a good interview! What did you tell them about Prop 2? (I'm just curious)

    At the end of my interview we ended up having this random discussion about using chiropractic/acupuncture on horses and dogs-- pretty funny as my 3 interviewers were very "old school" vets and one of them kept joking about "horse quacks." Which, to be fair, I've seen plenty of, so I couldn't entirely disagree...
     
  39. cuitlamiztli

    cuitlamiztli onward and upward
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    Tolerating the cold is something even residents do! I'm glad to see that you and starlene liked Iowa and ISU :)
     
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  40. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Thanks for the update! I am glad that you had a good experience. It's interesting that they asked you other questions. The good thing is, those weren't difficult questions. Just ones that you should be able to answer.

    I'm not quite sure if they use a 'point' system. Maybe just a general 1,2,3 scale? Who knows.

    Hm, I can understand if you aren't fond of cold weather, but hating Iowa? That sounds a bit harsh. Personally, I loved Iowa, and the school. Not everyone's the same, but yeah. I think hate is too harsh of a word. >.>

    Well, good luck to you though, turkeytalk. Sounds like you did well! :)
     
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  41. 237397

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    Thanks! I loved Iowa, too. :) And it's nice to hear that I won't be the only one shivering in the dead of winter. At least they keep the buildings toasty warm.
     
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  42. LadyHitokiri

    LadyHitokiri UIUC CVM Class of 2013!
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    Here's to hoping we can be in the same class together! :xf:All of us SDNers have to stick together and keep each other warm! Hah
     
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  43. 237397

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    haha totally! i'm crossing my fingers supertight for this!
     
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  44. apscvt

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    Hey guys!
    Has anyone done a skype interview with Iowa or any other college? I am not going to be able to make the interview because it conflicts with another interview, and would really appreciate any tips/advice!
     

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