Thinking of a veterinary career? Stressed, depressed & impoverished – are you SURE you want to do it?

The New Statesman has just published an article on veterinary careers that makes gloomy reading. Some of the facts that stand out are:

    32.7 per cent of veterinary students have experienced depression, compared with 12 per cent of the wider UK population
    Students in the UK entering the course from 2012 onwards will owe £70,000 in loans on graduation
    An Australian survey found that an average graduate vet was earning the same per hour as a school leaver working in McDonalds
    A survey in the USA found that found that the ratio of debt to income for a new vet is roughly twice that of a junior doctor
    Despite these facts, 9,000 students applied for 1,000 places at UK veterinary schools in 2012: the career is more popular than ever

The career of a vet is not the idyllic answer to life satisfaction that people sometimes think. I love my job, but would I recommend the career to young people? For the right young person, yes. For the wrong person, it’s a big no. The question, of course, is how do you spot the “right” people from the “wrong” ones. I don’t think anyone knows the answer.

The New Statesman article should be essential reading for any 16 year old contemplating a veterinary career – read it here.

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Please note that I am unable to answer veterinary questions in comments. If you have questions or concerns about your pet's health it is always better to contact your vet.

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