The University of Bristol is offering practising veterinary surgeons experience of working full-time in a research environment in an attempt to inspire more vets to consider a career in research.

Interested in a career in research? Bristol’s Clinical Veterinary Primer Scheme could be for you.

The School of Veterinary Science – in association with the University’s Elizabeth Blackwell Institute and with support from the Wellcome Trust – is offering vets an opportunity to spend six months doing research in Bristol’s medical labs as part of its Clinical Veterinary Primer Scheme.

According to the university: “The veterinary profession is a rich and relatively untapped resource of talented individuals capable of making major contributions to advancing our knowledge of both human and animal disease. In addition, their unique skills in the areas of food security and farm animal health and welfare enable veterinary graduates to contribute to global health and sustainability research.

“However, despite this fact there is still a shortage of veterinary-trained individuals in research.”

The scheme is offered on a competitive basis, and successful applicants receive six months of salary and research expenses, allowing them to come out of clinical practice and spend a concentrated period of time doing high quality research. Participants in the scheme are able subsequently to apply for PhD funding from bodies such as the Wellcome Trust.

Darren Carwardine, recipient of the scheme’s first round of funding said: “Working as a practising vet I had no plans to undertake any formal research training but the clinical primer scheme was such an enjoyable and rewarding experience I was fortunate enough to be able to continue with the research I had started whilst studying towards a PhD.”

The scheme is now in its second year, and a third round of clinical primers is now open for applications and aims to recruit more talented veterinary-trained individuals. The closing date for expressions of interest is 5pm, March 6, 2015.

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