What practicing veterinary technicians need to do with externship students depends on the school, says Amy Butzier, BS, MEd, CVT, an assistant professor of veterinary technology at Mount Ida College in Newton, Mass. Each school develops its own guidelines in order to meet the criteria of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), which dictates to colleges what training needs to be covered in the curriculum. Each college must meet these criteria in order to be accredited.
“The colleges determine how they’ll go about meeting the criteria,” Butzier says. Still, most colleges establish similar externship guidelines because they have to answer to the AVMA. The difference usually lies in how many procedures, such as a catheter pull, need to be accomplished.
“Our school has check-off sheets that outline what skills the student needs to accomplish,” Butzier says. “When a technician sees that the student is proficient at that skill, they’ll check it off. I’ve also talked to other schools that use a similar method.” Regardless, schools need to give sites guidelines to ensure the validity of student training, Butzier says.
Click here to view sample guidelines.
Need activities to fill a student's down time? Click here for Butzier's suggestions.