Pritt reflects on service as AVMA vice president

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Dr. Stacy Pritt

After almost two years as AVMA vice president, Dr. Stacy Pritt shared a few parting thoughts with JAVMA News before her term concludes this July.

What would you say you've accomplished during your time as AVMA vice president?

With regards to my direct AVMA vice president responsibilities, I have been able to attend Student AVMA meetings and visit 36 out of the 37 schools with SAVMA chapters.

While not directly related to my vice president responsibilities, I was very proud to chair the Veterinary Leadership Conference Task Force. Even though the AVMA VLC, held each January, is a signature AVMA conference, our goal was to evaluate the conference and make it the premier leadership event for veterinary medicine in the United States. The task force's final report outlines several recommendations, many of which have been adopted, that would achieve the goal of elevating the VLC within the profession.

Is there a particular experience or anecdote from your travels you'd like to share?

My travel to foreign veterinary schools, including those in the Caribbean, Canada, and the United Kingdom, has shown me that we need to continue to change how we think about veterinary education. Several veterinary schools outside of the United States see themselves as international centers of excellence for veterinary medicine or have that as a strategic goal. Therefore, U.S. students are choosing to seek an education abroad, even when they have the choice to attend a domestic school. As the profession thinks about student support, such as scholarships, we cannot forget about the thousands of U.S. students attending foreign schools who will someday practice in the U.S. and enrich our profession.

Explain the value of the Board of Directors having a liaison to SAVMA and its student chapters.

Being a liaison means that I advise the SAVMA Executive Board and officers. The SAVMA president sits in on all AVMA Board of Directors meetings as an invited guest, and the president-elect also attends to obtain an orientation to AVMA leadership and processes. As they sit in on the AVMA Board meetings, I provide guidance and encourage them to provide input. As vice president, I also attend SAVMA Executive Board meetings to inform the student leaders about current issues and topics affecting the profession and organization.

Recently, the AVMA vice president became a regular member of the AVMA–Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges Joint Committee, a committee that encompasses the officers and executive leadership of the AVMA and AAVMC. I serve as a source of valuable information about current trends and issues within the veterinary student population.

The AVMA is heavily invested in personal wellness, student debt and income, and professional diversity. Do students see these efforts, and what is their response?

From my perspective, the students are very appreciative of the AVMA's efforts on these important issues. They see the AVMA as a leader in the provision of supportive resources for the profession.

Related JAVMA content:

Pritt supports students as AVMA vice president (July 1, 2017)

Board advances items, some directly benefiting students (June 1, 2017)