When you apply to vet school, there are certain boxes you have to tick: achieve the right A-Levels (or Advanced Highers), complete a number of weeks of work experience, and pass that dreaded interview.
What nobody tells you, however, is that being a vet student requires a number of other skills that seemingly have nothing to do with the veterinary profession.
After completing a week of EMS at a vet practice, there is the unspoken expectation that you should produce some form of teeth-rotting goodness as a thank you. Your vets would probably appreciate a box of Celebrations, but they’re going to be far more impressed if you turn out to be harbouring secret Mary Berry-esque talents.
Not only that, many clubs and societies use baked goodies to lure in new members, and some vet schools even host an anatomy themed bake off, for which the more exceptional entries often leave us questioning whether their creators are in the right profession.
Getting fellow students to part with their hard-earned cash can be more difficult than you’d expect, but persuasion is a great skill to develop, especially when you may find yourself moving on to trying to entice large pharmaceutical companies to sponsor a much bigger event.
Perseverance (or rather bugging people on Facebook and through emails) can really pay off.
Vet students are notorious for their love of fancy dress. Perhaps the results aren’t quite what you’d expect to see on the cover of Vogue, but it is astonishing what we can whip up out of nothing in five minutes flat (or perhaps three hours that may have been better dedicated to studying).
Movie characters, gnomes, circus, thrift shop, “anything but clothes”… There hasn’t been a theme that has baffled us yet.
We may not all be the next Sébastien Loeb or Lewis Hamilton, but driving is a pretty important skill. Granted, not every vet student holds a licence, but those that do find it a lot easier to get to the numerous EMS placements we have to fulfil during our time at vet school.
Many of us have other attributes from being sporty or musical, to being a fluent multi-linguist or technology whizz. These may stem from trying to boost our personal statements prior to applying for vet school or could just be personality traits.
However, if you don’t enter vet school as a “well-rounded” person, you’ll certainly come out as one.