A change to the AVMA Bylaws makes graduating veterinarians eligible for membership if they were members of any organization represented in the Student AVMA House of Delegates.
The AVMA House of Delegates approved the change at its regular winter session in January. Membership previously was offered automatically only to graduates who were members of student chapters of the AVMA, which are entities separate from SAVMA.
Eligible graduates pay no dues during their graduation year, and half the active-member dues rate for two years after graduation.
The change will immediately affect graduates from St. Matthew's University on Grand Cayman Island. Students there have representation in SAVMA but do not have an AVMA student chapter. When the bylaws change was first considered, it also would have affected graduates from the Caribbean schools at Ross University and St. George's University, which have since gained AVMA accreditation and student chapters.
Graduates from universities without SAVMA representation can apply for AVMA membership and pay a reduced dues rate during their graduation year and the following year.
Delegates also passed an AVMA Bylaws amendment that will require a two-thirds vote of the House of Delegates to approve all future bylaws amendments. The bylaws previously allowed a majority vote by delegates when the proposed changes had AVMA Executive Board approval.