Assessment of the Loss of Pre-Veterinary Experiences Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic Towards a Competitive DVM Application

Bryson S. Jacobs, Faith E. Church, Sarah B. Swartout, Jessica C. Clark, Kenneth D. Royal & Shweta Trivedi Department of Animal Science, North Carolina State University 466 Riddick Hall 2401 Stinson Drive Raleigh NC 27607

Due to the significant impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, pre-veterinary (pre-vet) students at North Carolina State University (NCSU) have had a difficult time gaining experience to become a competitive applicant for veterinary school admissions. This study attempts to evaluate how pre-vet students were affected by the pandemic by assessing the hours of animal, veterinary, and research experiential opportunities as well as course credits and compensation lost and gained during the 2020 summer semester. A Qualtrics survey was created and sent to 605 NCSU pre-vet students via VetPAC listserv. Of the 286 responses (47% response rate), a total of 355 experiences were lost and only 77 alternative experiences were gained. In regards to experiences lost, a significant portion came from veterinary (44.2%) and animal (28.7%) experiences along with various research (15.2%) opportunities. In addition, a total of 131 academic credits and $275,671.30 in predicted compensation was lost. Of these lost experiences, only 21.7% of experiences were gained back. Due to the loss of experiential hours, more than half (52.6%) of our respondents expressed their concern about the strength of their VMCAS application and 50 (17.5%) respondents are now considering a gap year. Respondents also indicated that the pandemic has had a negative effect on their mental health, GPA, and financial standing. The results of this study showed that DVM admissions committees at NCSU and in the United States could consider recommendations on reducing required experience hours and discounting application fees to accommodate for the impact of the pandemic while holistically reviewing applications.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenters: Bryson Jacobs, Faith Church

Institution: North Carolina State University

Type: Poster

Subject: Animal Sciences

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 1
Date/Time: Mon 1:30pm-2:30pm
Session Number: 2011