Quantcast

Unhappy at summer internship

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

awkequestrian

Full Member
2+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2016
Messages
11
Reaction score
2

Members don't see this ad.
Hi everyone!
I could use some advice. Recently, I started working as a kennel tech in a vet clinic that does surgeries, and it is really fast paced and so far I haven't been a fan it. I've been working super long hours everyday, and it feels like I have no time for anything else. The clinic only works with small animals, and while I do enjoy working with small animals, I think I'm starting to realize I'm more passionate about working on farms and with large animals. But now I'm not sure what to do about this job that I just started. It's technically a summer internship, and my mom thinks I should just stick out out for the rest of the summer. But I miss working with horses so badly, and dread going to work everyday. I was thinking about maybe trying to get a job with one of the local equine vets, but I feel bad because this clinic put time into training me and expected to have me for the whole summer, and I'm worried they might be upset if I leave so soon. My previous boss went out of her way to help me get this internship, so I feel like I'd be letting everyone down if I left this job. I feel so confined working in the same clinic day after day, and would love to get out and work on some farms this summer. I feel bad passing up on an opportunity so many other people would love to have, but at the same time I don't want to spend my whole summer at a job that I'm unhappy with.
If anyone has some experience with this, I'd love to hear their advice! I'm not looking to do anything drastic right away, and I'm going to wait a few weeks to see if my feelings towards the clinic change since it is still new to me. But I want to be prepared in case I decide I want to move on.
 

Lucy410

Davis c/o 2022
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2014
Messages
88
Reaction score
131
Hi everyone!
I could use some advice. Recently, I started working as a kennel tech in a vet clinic that does surgeries, and it is really fast paced and so far I haven't been a fan it. I've been working super long hours everyday, and it feels like I have no time for anything else. The clinic only works with small animals, and while I do enjoy working with small animals, I think I'm starting to realize I'm more passionate about working on farms and with large animals. But now I'm not sure what to do about this job that I just started. It's technically a summer internship, and my mom thinks I should just stick out out for the rest of the summer. But I miss working with horses so badly, and dread going to work everyday. I was thinking about maybe trying to get a job with one of the local equine vets, but I feel bad because this clinic put time into training me and expected to have me for the whole summer, and I'm worried they might be upset if I leave so soon. My previous boss went out of her way to help me get this internship, so I feel like I'd be letting everyone down if I left this job. I feel so confined working in the same clinic day after day, and would love to get out and work on some farms this summer. I feel bad passing up on an opportunity so many other people would love to have, but at the same time I don't want to spend my whole summer at a job that I'm unhappy with.
If anyone has some experience with this, I'd love to hear their advice! I'm not looking to do anything drastic right away, and I'm going to wait a few weeks to see if my feelings towards the clinic change since it is still new to me. But I want to be prepared in case I decide I want to move on.

I'm sorry to hear things aren't going as well as you had hoped. You say you're willing to stick it out for a few more weeks and I think that's wise. You can still get some good experience there and ultimately it's only a few months.

Is it a possibility to go part-time and spend those extra hours working at a farm? They might be open to that if the alternative is losing you completely.

If you do decide to quit just be aware that you will probably be burning a bridge with that clinic given the fact that they did put time into training you and you're talking about leaving within a month or so of starting (if I'm getting the timeline right). They will probably not be interested in hiring you again, but if you go as professionally as possible (give two weeks notice, really give it your all while you're there) it probably won't cause problems for you with other vets. Also, as you note, it may create some bad feelings on the part of the person who recommended you, since it reflects poorly on her. If that's a person you are relying on for a letter of rec or other assistance down the road, consider this carefully. If you do leave, be sure to explain the situation to her (it wasn't a good fit, didn't align with your professional goals, etc.) and apologize since she did help you.

FWIW I was in a similar situation once - I was hired for the summer by my family's vet and it turned out to be a terrible fit. I was undertrained and inexperienced, it was very fast-paced, and I was constantly getting yelled at. I dreaded going there every day. But I did my best and finished out the summer, and at the end the vet invited me to return the following summer. I never went back, but it was still good to have a solid positive recommendation from them.

Good luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

Awapi

UGA VetMed c/o 2021
10+ Year Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2010
Messages
366
Reaction score
282
Even if you aren't interested in working in small animal medicine it's always good to avoid burning bridges unless it's a truly toxic situation. I have often been surprised how small professional worlds are! I agree with the previous poster, in a situation like this where a former boss has gone out on a limb and the current employer has put a lot of time and resources into you, it's probably best to tough it out or see if you can talk with them about reducing your hours to accommodate time you'd like to spend at a farm as well. I know it's not ideal to stay in this position, but it will give you some varied experience and working through things like this is also a good talking point for future interviews (school, job, whatever) to show dedication to your commitments.

I have a few employees that work for me now and there are a couple that really hate doing things they don't *want* to do and it really shows in their work. It is exceedingly rare to love 100% of what you do (disclaimer: your experience now is an extreme in the opposite direction, but still relevant). Being able to work through and finish a commitment that didn't end up being exactly what you want to do is a great skill and future employers will see value in that.
 

flameshock

Everything’s on fire
5+ Year Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2016
Messages
641
Reaction score
1,117
Why are you dreading going in to the clinic? Is the job toxic? If not, 'm inclined to agree with the others who posted. If you committed to the summer (and a colleague helped you get the job) then you should try to hold on as long as possible. Vet med is a small pond and you don't want to alienate anyone, especially if you may need a letter of recommendation down the road.

That being said, being committed to work doesn't mean you should be committed to being miserable. I would sit down and take a long look to pin-point the two things you most dislike about the job. Then, see what your options are for making those things more tolerable. Maybe it's asking to drop your hours, maybe it's having a discussion with your boss, maybe it's shadowing with an equine vet on your off days. Without knowing specifics it's difficult to offer more tailored suggestions, but I would certainly suggest trying to improve your experience before quitting entirely.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

TheGirlWithTheFernTattoo

West Coast Best Coast c/o 2022
5+ Year Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2015
Messages
3,472
Reaction score
6,036
Agree with above; if it isn't toxic stick it out. It is just 1 summer, and (I say this not knowing your application details) having at least a little SA experience will only help you.

Btw, your comment about long hours: was that in regards to not liking the long hours at this clinic in particular or not liking long hours in general? This profession (ESPECIALLY equine/LA) is well known for the long work days, so if you truly dislike them you might want to keep that in mind. :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Polocrosse2017

KSU C/O 2024
5+ Year Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2017
Messages
213
Reaction score
394
Agree with the above. If not toxic try to power through it but talk to your boss about the max number of hours you can work a week and see if this is possible. I did my internship during the school year at a small animal vet hospital. Honestly I didn't love it. I loved the times I got to really help with procedures or sit in on surgeries. Cleaning the kennels, helping make the memorial items for clients, expressing anal glands I was not as thrilled with but I know they are part of the job. I got great recommendations from the vet and ended on a great note with her. Now this summer I am back to my passion working with an equine vet. Very long hours out in the heat, fast paced, messy, but I love it, even when on some days I get to dig up trees or spread mulch! Other days I get to travel to other states, drive a trailer, and really learn. You will need LA and SA experience so stick this out for your SA experience and then move on to LA.
 

Coquette22

Shinigami
7+ Year Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2009
Messages
4,012
Reaction score
3,220
So, it's only a summer internship. Which means like four months. Which is really nothing. You got the job, they've trained you, yes, they are likely expecting to have you for four months. Unless the environment is toxic, stick it out. If it's only the fact that you don't LOVE the work, just deal with it. There's lots of aspects of my job I don't love, but sometimes, we have to do things we don't like. There will be a crap ton of stuff through your pre-vet and vet school studies that you won't like. Finish the summer, learn what you can, get a good reference, move on. Not working on farms for 4 months won't kill you.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

that redhead

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Contest Winner!
Joined
Feb 26, 2010
Messages
11,726
Reaction score
13,037
I could use some advice. Recently, I started working as a kennel tech in a vet clinic that does surgeries, and it is really fast paced and so far I haven't been a fan it. I've been working super long hours everyday, and it feels like I have no time for anything else.

Welcome to veterinary medicine! :laugh:

\
But now I'm not sure what to do about this job that I just started. It's technically a summer internship, and my mom thinks I should just stick out out for the rest of the summer. But I miss working with horses so badly, and dread going to work everyday. I was thinking about maybe trying to get a job with one of the local equine vets, but I feel bad because this clinic put time into training me and expected to have me for the whole summer, and I'm worried they might be upset if I leave so soon. My previous boss went out of her way to help me get this internship, so I feel like I'd be letting everyone down if I left this job. I feel so confined working in the same clinic day after day, and would love to get out and work on some farms this summer. I feel bad passing up on an opportunity so many other people would love to have, but at the same time I don't want to spend my whole summer at a job that I'm unhappy with.
If anyone has some experience with this, I'd love to hear their advice! I'm not looking to do anything drastic right away, and I'm going to wait a few weeks to see if my feelings towards the clinic change since it is still new to me. But I want to be prepared in case I decide I want to move on.

If you had someone help you get this position and it's only for the summer, I would encourage you to stick it out. You will feel less overwhelmed as you learn the ropes and you'll be better able to handle the pace. You can work with large animals another time - and perhaps focus on them in the future - but for now, I don't think it's wise to leave this place so quickly.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

pooter

PennWe, 2015!
7+ Year Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2011
Messages
487
Reaction score
141
Yeah, I'm with pretty much all of the previous commentors in advising you to stick it out. Keep in mind, if you make it to vet school (I'm assuming you're pre-vet) you will have to do clinical rotations. Even if you major in LA/Equine, you'll be expected to complete certain core small animal rotations. It will be fast-paced. The days will be long. You will not have time for other things. If you can't deal with that even on a short-term basis, I'd recommend figuring that out now rather than after you invest thousands of dollars and years of work into getting there.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Top