Five veterinary colleges have joined together to form a consortium designed to create more opportunities for students, faculty, and professionals in the field.
The Consortium of Western Regional Colleges of Veterinary Medicine is a regional think tank comprising Colorado State University, Oregon State University, the University of California-Davis, Washington State University, and Western University of Health Sciences.
Deans from the five institutions met in San Francisco this past October to hammer out plans for the consortium. There they developed a rubric for collaboration, which will be used to create and implement shared strategies, according to a Jan. 17 UC-Davis press release. Unanimous agreement was reached to begin work on a regional teaching academy that would offer advanced instruction for faculty on the latest innovations and research in veterinary medical education.
Other current issues in veterinary education the deans agreed to address include the following:
- How to narrow existing gaps between selected veterinary career tracks and societal needs.
- Targeted recruitment of veterinary students.
- Professional readiness among graduating veterinarians.
- Learning and applying nontechnical skills in veterinary school to keep veterinarians at the center of health care for animals.
- Identifying and developing ways for individual veterinary colleges to share resources and create a regional center of excellence for specialized veterinary training.
- Strong, ongoing faculty development to promote rich and innovative learning environments.
UC-Davis Dean Michael Lairmore said in the release, "We explored the concept behind the group and identified areas of potential collaboration that align closely with strategic priorities of the veterinary profession. We established short- and long-term goals with a focus on educating better prepared graduates, developing faculty expertise, and modeling collaboration. We are fully committed to continued engagement with other members of the consortium to secure a strong, relevant future for our profession."