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New Scholarships and Learning Opportunities for 2024 Veterinary Students


Most professional school graduates are burdened by educational debt, but veterinarians face the additional challenge of comparatively low starting salaries. New veterinary graduates often carry the same or more debt as freshly minted physicians but typically make far less. Scholarships can alleviate some of the financial strain and learning opportunities can help veterinarians attain higher paying starting jobs, which can benefit veterinary students by placing them in a better position for financial success. The following article provides details on new scholarships and learning opportunities available for 2024 veterinary students.

Mike Dunn, DVM, Veterinary Student Scholarship

In collaboration with the VIN Foundation, Becky Godchaux created the Mike Dunn, DVM, Veterinary Student Scholarship in honor of Dr. Dunn, her veterinarian, to produce more veterinarians like him. The scholarship will be awarded to two students accepted to start in fall 2024 at a U.S. veterinary school. Each recipient will receive up to $35,000 each year for a total of $140,000 over their four years of veterinary school. The scholarship is restricted to veterinary students planning to practice companion animal medicine, and only the first 300 applicants will be considered. Scholarship winners will be required to participate in VIN Foundation mentoring support programs that target issues such as mental health and financial wellness.

Chewy Veterinary Leaders Program Scholarship

Chewy Health, in partnership with the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC), will provide scholarships to 15 underserved third-year veterinary students. Each recipient will receive $20,000 that the AAVMC will pay directly to their educational institution. The goal of this scholarship is to help increase representation in the veterinary profession of individuals from underserved groups and communities who do not have access to financial resources. In addition to monetary assistance, scholarship awardees will receive resources, such as a professional development curriculum, mental health support, and coaching, to transition them from veterinary school to practice. 

Once participants graduate, they will receive sponsorship for MentorVet Leap, a program that provides mentorship and a professional development curriculum for early career veterinarians and will be able to join the Chewy Veterinary Leaders alumni network, which provides access to ongoing networking opportunities. To be eligible for the scholarship, students must attend an AAVMC member institution, have an interest in small animal medicine, and be nominated by their institution. The selection committee will consider the student’s commitment to leadership development, academic accomplishments, community service record, and established financial need. 

AVMA/AVMF Scholarships for Veterans

In 2016, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF) established a scholarship for U.S. military veterans pursuing a veterinary degree, and an anonymous $100,000 donation to the AVMF will allow the organizations to award five $9,000 scholarships for the next two years. Applicants must be U.S. Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy, or Space Force veterans, and currently a student in their first three years at an AVMA-accredited veterinary school.

Zoetis Foundation/AAVMC Veterinary Student Scholarship

In partnership with the AAVMC, the Zoetis Foundation will offer more than 200 $7,000 scholarships to second- and third-year veterinary students at a U.S. veterinary school. The organizations will award scholarships to students interested in all veterinary fields, including food animal medicine, small animal clinical medicine, research, government services, public health, and organized veterinary medicine. The program will consider total student enrollment at each veterinary school to determine the number of scholarships awarded at each institution.

Veterinary Scholars Program

The Veterinary Scholars Program, offered by Boehringer Ingelheim, is a 10- to 12-week opportunity for veterinary students to gain hands-on biomedical research experience. Each participant is assigned a mentor and a laboratory at one of the 36 participating schools and will conduct a hypothesis-driven research project, developed jointly by the student and the mentor, over the summer. At the program’s end, the student will present their research findings to their fellow scholars and attending faculty. This experience allows veterinary students to learn about research’s broader aspects and helps them evaluate potential research careers. 

In addition, every year AAVMC and Boehringer Ingelheim present a Veterinary Scholars Symposium, where Veterinary Scholars Program participants convene to showcase their work. This year’s symposium will be held at the University of Minnesota from August 8 to 10. Each year, two exemplary research projects are recognized and presented awards.

The AVMA/AVMF also offers Second Opportunity Summer Research Stipends that support students who participated in the 2023 Veterinary Scholars Program and want a second summer of research experience. Up to five students will receive $6,500 stipends, plus $1,000 in travel expenses, to attend the 2024 Veterinary Scholars Symposium.


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