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Information for Veterinary Students

Through the public and corporate (PC) academic track, students interested in careers beyond private clinical practice will be able to immerse themselves in advanced coursework and identify externship opportunities that will prepare them to be leaders in the field of public and corporate veterinary medicine. Courses in the PC track curriculum train students to take a systems approach in addressing complex health problems at the intersection of human, animal, and environmental health. Content focuses on developing knowledge and skills critical to maintaining healthy populations, translating science to policy, and communicating across diverse audiences. The approach is broad so that students can apply what they learn to their specific career interest area.

Students who graduate from the PC track are also well prepared for private practice, which is sometimes a first stepping stone in a planned pathway towards future careers in public practice. 

The CPCVM oversees and administers two travel award programs for students: 

  • The United States Animal Health Association (USAHA) / American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD) Veterinary Student Scholarship provides travel stipends to attend the annual USAHA / AAVLD fall conference. Awards are competitive. The application period typically opens in late August.
  • The Veterinary Public Practice Award provides travel reimbursement up to $1,000 for students who participate in public practice veterinary externships. Awards are competitive. The application period typically opens in late September - early October for the following year.

We announce the open application period for all travel awards on the Home page of our website.

A video was established to give veterinary students the opportunity to learn more about public practice career opportunities from a panel of veterinarians with a wide variety of experience in this important area of veterinary medicine. Each panel member gives a brief overview of their career, the path they followed into public practice, and career guidance.  A link to the full video (1 hour, 38 minutes) is available at the bottom of this page.  A transcript is available with the video. 

While we consider it best to watch the full video for context and general advice, we have included direct links to each speaker's presentation for those students who may have specific areas of interest.


Starting at 6:31.

Dr. DeBonis is a pet food safety consultant, and former Lt. Colonel in US Army Veterinary Corps.  

Starting at 15:20.

Dr. Gilsdorf is a veterinary consultant, and former Director of National Center for Animal Health Programs within the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). 

Starting at 19:05.

Dr. Annelli is the Executive Vice President of the National Association of Federal Veterinarians (NAFV), former Director of several units within USDA.

Starting at 34:37.

Dr. Bennett is the State Veterinarian for New York, and former Supervisory Public Health Veterinarian within USDA.

Starting at 43:26.

Dr. Egbe is the Chief Veterinary Medical Officier in HHS's Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR), National Disaster Medical System (NDMS), and National Veterinary Response Team (NVRT). 

Starting at 1:02:10.

Dr. Ragan is the Director of the Center for Public and Corporate Veterinary Medicine (CPCVM)

picture of YouTube Introduction screen