bern

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Hello, all - I just joined up and am finding some very good information here. Can anyone tell me anything about LSU veterinary school? I will be applying in the fall and will have been a legal resident of Louisiana for one year prior to that. Due to location and cost, it is really the one vet school that I really want to go to, so I wasn't going to bother applying to any others until I read something about vet schools looking at it as a lack of determination on the part of the applicant. Is that a commons practice? Would it be better to apply to an additional school or two just to convince them of my resolve to become a vet?

As for my stats, I have a B.A. in English and am now doing post-bac studies to finish up vet school requirements. My overall GPA is somewhere in the 3.7-3.8 range, with a 4.0 last semester. I took the GRE score a couple of years ago and got a total of 1370 for verbal and math, but could probably improve it if I actually studied for it. I rode horses competetitively in high school, grew up raising chickens and reptiles, volunteered for a few months at a small animal hospital last year, and will probably be volunteering at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans this summer.

I am also trying to decide if I should continue to take more classes in the fall (I will have completed all courses required by LSU by the end of the semester) or just spend the time doing more volunteer work. Any thoughts as to which will strengthen my application more?

Sorry for the long post - any information you all might have about LSU and my situation would be appreciated!
 

southerncomfort

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Hi!

I'm an LSU re-applicant applying this cycle, and will interview soon. I'm currently working in research and doing my master's at TU. Hey, what kind of riding did you do? I dabble in jumpers when I can! :D

Personally, I think your gpa and gre scores are very strong, although you may want to buff up your sciences, if you have just completed what you need for the pre-requisites and no more. It would probably help a lot to get more clinical experience, even more so than the zoo--working at a local vet clinic is a great option. I did four years at the emergency clinic in Mandeville. Definitely know what you're getting yourself into!!

I believe the LSU SVM Open House is this coming weekend (2/12). I've been to it before, but it's geared mostly towards the lay-public rather than prospective students. In other words, fun to look at, but you won't learn much about the academic side and learning facilities.

As far as applying to multiple schools, I actually had an LSU admissions person ask why I applied to multiple schools--"Your best chance is with your in-state, don't bother with the others"--or something to that effect! Know also that LSU has contract positions with Arkansas and accepts 25-30% of their class from non-residents (they pay a lot more in tuition). That takes a significant chunk out of the 84 spots away from residents. With that in mind, quite a few people have had luck getting into an out of state school that is "friendly" to non-residents (and their non-resident tuition! ;) ) So if other schools interest you, then go for it. Also, you will notice that different schools have different pre-reqs--i.e., NC wants 6 hours of business, GA wants GRE Biology subject test, etc. So that becomes the deciding factor for many people.

I would also recommend setting an appointment this summer with the LSU admissions folks--they'll give you hints about completing your application and will tell you if you need to improve anything, take more classes, etc.
Good luck!
 
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bern

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Thanks for the info, southerncomfort!

The LSU open house is actually on the 19th and I will probably be going. I've never been to the campus, so it will at least give me a chance to check it out even if I don't learn much about the academics. What would a meeting with the admissions people entail?

The reason why I am particularly interested in volunteer opportunities at the zoo is because I am interested in specializing in zoo and wildlife medicine. I did volunteer at a small animal hospital for a while, but to be perfectly honest I don't think I would be happy doing that as a long term thing. It isn't the animals - it's the owners. People often treat their pets terribly or neglect them, which is bad enough (and those are the ones that actually bother to bring them to the vet). I just wouldn't like to be the one to euthanize an animal just because the family doesn't want to pay for a simple procedure that could save its life... I'm sure you know the drill.

I also used to dabble in jumpers, but haven't ridden in quite a while. I'm considering equine medicine as a second choice to zoo and wildlife.

I wonder - do schools take into consideration your choice of speciallization when making acceptance decisions?
 

MicheleVet

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Overall, schools want you to be openminded when going to vet school. They don't want you to know that you ONLY want to do small animal or ONLY wildlife. The only exception to that is....and this is the only one I know of...at Florida...if you have great pig experience and you say you want to do pigs, you'll probably get in. But the flip side of that is if you actually want to do pigs, UF is NOT the school for you. We have no classes on pigs and there are only about 20 (research pigs) in the area.

Wildlife/zoomed is VERY competitive! And most residency programs and specilaty centers (Sea World, Busch Gardens, etc) want you to have a lot of small animal experience and varied amounts of equine experience (during vet school - classes, rotations, etc)....even sometimes an internship in small animal medicine and surgery. The major reason for this is that there isn't a lot of published data and there isn't a lot of information about the various species....they want you to KNOW the medicine and then be able to apply it to the exotic species etc.


Your application sounds competitive, but this fall I would get a job in a clinic or with a mobile vet (equine or small animal) and really get a lot of great clinical experience. The more patients you see now, the easier it will be to understand "why" later.
 
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bern

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Thank you, Michelevet.

I was looking over descriptions of internship opportunities for recent vet school graduates on the LSU website and noticed that the yearlong zoo medicine one was unpaid. Small animal and equine practice paid, but not this one. Is that common? I suppose after years of going to school and barely scraping by on the earnings of a part time job it won't be much of a change, but sometime during that unpaid year the school loan collectors will start knocking on my door...

Is that the norm for most zoo med internships?
 

birdvet2006

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bern said:
Thank you, Michelevet.

I was looking over descriptions of internship opportunities for recent vet school graduates on the LSU website and noticed that the yearlong zoo medicine one was unpaid. Small animal and equine practice paid, but not this one. Is that common? I suppose after years of going to school and barely scraping by on the earnings of a part time job it won't be much of a change, but sometime during that unpaid year the school loan collectors will start knocking on my door...

Is that the norm for most zoo med internships?
Bern,

Most specialty boards require that you do a small animal medicine and surgery rotating internship - not a specialised internship. These "zoo animal internships" aren't usually set up to advance one into a residency (at least that's the feeling I got reading about LSU's zoo animal internship). The idea is to get a solid foundation in general medicine/surgery prior to spending years dedicated to the study of a certain discipline.

Cindy (vet student at Glasgow)
 

MicheleVet

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Some internships are paid....some are not...at UF (small animal rotating) currently they accept 2 paid and 2 unpaid. I personally think it's a crime against humanity not to pay interns :mad: ...especially since most are worked dry, but I have accepted an unpaid spot for the guarantee I get to stay with my husband...so I'm not practicing what I preach. :(