Early Career Development Committee - Entity Description

The purpose of the Early Career Development Committee (ECDC) is to support AVMA efforts to strengthen the value of AVMA membership for recent graduates.  The ECDC concept was developed to encourage recent graduate involvement by creating volunteer positions specifically designated for this segment of the profession and allow for varying degrees of time commitment to the Association.


  1. Work with AVMA staff to develop resources that will impact AVMA members early in their career.

  2. Create networking opportunities for individuals early in their veterinary career within the Early Career Online Community.

  3. Actively engage recent graduates to elicit discussions and gather feedback for the AVMA on a real time basis.

Membership, Method of Appointment and Representation

The Early Career Development Committee shall consist of nine voting members who will represent the following:

  1. 5 recent graduates (less than 5 years post-graduation)

  2. 2 emerging leaders (5-15 years post-graduation)

  3. A Faculty Advisor at a college/school of veterinary medicine

  4. A representative from the American Society of Veterinary Medical Association Executives


All nine members of the ECDC are appointed by the Board of Directors, including self-nominations, will be accepted for the nine positions, with preference given to those active within the Early Career Online Community or nominated by a principal or constituent allied veterinary medical organization of the AVMA. 

Consistent with AVMA policy, all Committee members are eligible for 2 three-year terms.

Staff Consultants

Mary Beth Ciukaj


The Chair of the ECDC will be elected annually from among the Committee’s membership.


ECDC meetings will be held up to twice a year in Schaumburg, IL at AVMA Headquarters.


Travel expenses will be authorized in accordance with AVMA travel policy.


The ECDC will advise and report to the Board of Directors.

Life Expectancy and Sunset Review 

Committee performance will be reviewed in compliance with AVMA governance policies.

Early Career Online Community

The Early Career Online Community provides professional interaction and support among recent veterinary graduates and functions as a discussion group to gather feedback for the AVMA.  The Community will be associated with the ECDC and designated for recent graduates that are less than five years post-graduation from veterinary school.  This community is targeted to reach a maximum capacity of 150 individuals, but can be extended if interest dictates. Early Career Online Community participants will commit themselves to regular electronic engagement within the Community.