Name: Georgina Cavanagh

Qualifications: Bachelor of Science and doctor of veterinary medicine

Position/Job?: New graduate vet at sea side vet Wallaroo south Australia

What does winning the VetPrac Prize mean to you?

It was a real honour to win a prize at my final prize ceremony at university. I am so excited about going to a VetPrac workshop as a qualified vet because as a student I helped out with one and I know how great they are!

Tell us about your experiences during your placements

I have enjoyed all my placements and learnt so much. I purposely chose a wide range of clinics from small animal clinics, mixed practices and even a marine wildlife park. These placements taught me a variety of little helpful hints and tricks, things that can’t really be taught at university. These placements were a fantastic opportunity to get to know many vets in the industry. I was lucky enough to have done 2 weeks at my current job I loved it so much there were no hesitations to apply once a position was advertised.

What are the challenges a vet student faces on a daily basis?

There are a variety of challenges faced, some are faced by all students and some particular to veterinary students. Every student is faced with financial challenges and these were often more difficult for the vet students as we always had full days of uni with long hours and lots of study to do after hours. As vet students it was essential to learn to work in a team and how to communicate with both humans and animals. The workload and content were both challenging often due to the amount covered. All these challenges were made so much easier through great supportive staff and fellow students.

What challenges do you anticipate as a new graduate and how do you hope to manage them?

I am sure there will be many challenges but I think the biggest will be having the confidence in my knowledge and myself to be sure of my diagnoses and advice. I know this confidence will come with time and experience. A supportive team in the work place and also in friends and family will help any time I feel stressed.

Do you have an exam tips you could share with vet students?

Don’t stress over the marks, we all have our own strengths and weaknesses and when it comes to getting a job the employee is going to base their decision on how well you fit in with their team not how well you did in your nutrition exam!

We are all so smart to have gotten into the course so if you find yourself comparing marks against other students and being disappointed, remember this.

Be sure to drink lots of water and make time do something you love as a real study break – better to play a game of netball for an hour than sit in the same spot on Facebook for an hour, get out of the “study environment”.

How do you cope with stress?

I am an extrovert so when I was stressed I caught up with friends; over the phone, out to dinner, walking the dog or netball.

What do you like to do for fun?

I really enjoy crafty things such as sewing and painting. I also love cooking, in particular baking something sweet.