Independent Vetcare (IVC) has created a graduate academy to foster long-term relationships between new vets and IVC practices around the country.

The first intake will begin their probationary 12-month contracts on September 1, 2014, with plans to develop and expand the academy scheme significantly for the following academic year.

The group also intends to work with veterinary school to provide EMS placements to undergraduates through their clinical years.

David Hillier, chief executive of IVC said: “Recent research by Onswitch with new graduates highlighted their primary aim is to have a clinical mentor (mentioned by 78%) along with surgical support for routine procedures (68%).

“The IVC Graduate Academy delivers both these key components, along with a generous CPD budget offering 10 full days’ training in a wide range of medical, surgical, personal development and business areas in the first year. In addition we are providing an attractive remuneration package with a salary of £24,000 to £27,000 as well as a £5,000 bursary.

“We have developed the Graduate Academy to provide talented new vets with real opportunities to gain experience and build a fulfilling career nurtured by IVC’s expertise as the UK’s fastest growing veterinary group. We have worked hard to ensure the academy will meet the needs of new vets, supporting them closely through the transition from student to clinician.”

Rhona Buchanan, operations support vet with IVC, said: “It is well recognised that veterinary graduates face a period of vulnerability when making the transition from learning the ‘science’ of veterinary medicine to delivering the ‘art’ of the veterinary practitioner.

“In designing the Graduate Academy, we have listened to the views of a number of 2013 graduates to create robust mentoring schemes within IVC practices and a CPD programme that will provide a practical slant to the topics covered.

“We also hope that by bringing the new graduates together on a regular basis, we will create a ‘buddy’ group to help alleviate the loneliness that many new graduates experience in their early career.”

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