Volunteering in NC/Advice

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I would definitely not skip the quantative section on the GRE. Some schools will not consider your score from that test date if you do that.

Besides that - if you're overall GPA is decent, which it is, then the one bad semester won't hurt you too much. Schools like to see academic improvement.
I think you have a shot! Since you are working hard, have great volunteer experience,good extra curricular activites, grades are better than before....Go for it! I would suggest getting small animal experience ASAP. Its just one of those areas that in my opinion you should have to show you know what the field is like. I have lots of rehab experience with wildlife as well(Don't you just love wildlife?)and did this whole last year with small animal and specialty medicine to get my application in check. I'd also suggest doing some large animal rotations with a vet, even with your farm experience. It shows your dedication to the entire field and interest in medicine. Even with a bad semester, you can explain it, with due cause. I'm a non traditional as well and boy did I have fun in my undergrad! :laugh: You've done lots of great things, so I think your application will look great if you narrow it down to the fact that veterinary medicine is what you've decided to dedicate your career goals to. Make them see you have developed a plan for your veterinary future. Hope this helps. Best of luck! :)
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I am currently getting wildlife rehab experience, will be starting SA clincial experience in Oct. when this new vet office opens, and will be starting at a raptor center next week. I am working full-time and realize that I may have to quit my job in the spring because I am taking Orgo, Microbiology, Physics and Stat and volunteering. I plan to apply next year for the 2009 cycle.

Does anyone know of any places where I can get volunteer experience in NC? I moved here earlier this year from Cali. and I have been having a hard time finding places to volunteer, esp. vet offices. Any help would be appreciated.

It sounds like you already have found two great local volunteer opportunities. I was going to recommend Piedmont Wildlife Center in Durham, the Carnivore Preservation Trust in Pittsboro, the Carolina Raptor Center near Charlotte or the American Wildlife Refuge (raptors) in Raleigh. Vet-wise, it doesn't seem like you'd need to volunteer at a small-animal clinic if you're currently working at one. Avian & Exotic Animal Care in Raleigh will sometimes let pre-vets shadow, but usually not volunteer due to safety regulations, if you're interested in getting some experience with exotics. I know a lot of people who volunteered at the Equine Unit at NCSU's vet school for equine experience (on a side note, this one is a great way to get your foot in the door at NCSU). Of course there are all of the local shelters as well, including the SPCA shelter in Raleigh which is really, really nice.

I personally worked in Raleigh and wanted to volunteer helping animals in some way, but I was burned out from cage-cleaning at work all the time, so I volunteered at ReTails, a local thrift shop whose proceeds went directly to a low-income spay-neuter program (a lot of fun, and looks great on the resume).

I generally found in NC that it is hard to volunteer in private veterinary practices because of safety reasons. They are sometimes open to shadowing, where you are not allowed to touch the animals. I personally think working hands-on as a tech provides much more in the way of experience and knowledge that will help you in vet school.

PS- I definitely think you have a shot at getting in. I am also a 2004 undergrad, and took the past few years to decide I wanted to go to vet school, and then to get in. I had a similar "low" GPA (lower in terms of what vet-students usually average), and I managed to get accepted into two out-of-state schools this year. I think my decent GRE grades along with a lot of variety in terms of experience helped me along the way. As a side note, I've found that it is incredibly hard to get into NCSU (if that is why you relocated to NC) with a low GPA. They are a great school, and they hold a high GPA in very high regard. I applied two years in a row, and was never accepted. If you are wanting to go to NCSU, I would definitely try to network throughout the school before attending -- get a job as a tech, volunteer, etc., anything to make you seem very appealing to them.

Hope this helps!
Thanks you the replies!

Alonepear....No I didnt move to NC for that. My husband is a doc in the military and he is stationed at Ft. Bragg for now. I was hoping that I could get into NCSU though because he is going to be deployed by the time I would be starting school and we have hella pets (3 ferrets, 1 cat, and 2 rotties) and I dont really want to have to move all of them anywhere. After reading other post on the forum I'm afraid that I probably dont have a shot getting into NCSU. Although Im probably going to have a cum 3.6 or 3.7 and a 4.0 science. I'm applying anyway and hope that I get lucky.
Anyways, thanks for the help!
One of the vets I worked for in Raleigh, her husband was in the military and she got an adviser at NCSU that helped her gain residency because her husband was in the military. Apparently, it is easier to gain residency by NC rules if you have a spouse in the military. You might want to look into that.