How to survive your first year of veterinary school

July 2, 2020
dvm360 Staff

Danny Sack, DVM, offers some tips to help new veterinary students navigate their most challenging year of veterinary school.

Transitioning from undergraduate to veterinary school can be tough to say the least, largely because of the massive workload and fast-paced learning, says Danny Sack, DVM, a 2020 graduate and small animal intern at the Animal Medical Center in New York. One good way for first-years to stay afloat is to understand how they learn best, he tells dvm360.

Speak to your professors, speak to different clinicians that you get along well with, and ask what worked for them in veterinary school, says Dr. Sack. Also speak to your peers, and ask how they’re studying. "But take every piece of advice with a grain of salt," he advises. "Not everybody learns the same [way]," he says.

He also advises first-year students not to compare themselves with others. “It’s really important to stay in your lane and do what makes you be the best student you can be, and that will kind of keep you on track and limit the stress you don’t need in your life,” he says.

Finally, he emphasizes the significance of proper self-care. His advice: Try not to push yourself past your limit and make time to rest.

“Don’t grind to the point where you can’t get up the next morning, where you’re having mental breakdowns because you can’t stand it one more minute," says Dr. Sack.

Watch the video below for more of Dr. Sack’s recommendations.