World Veterinary Day is 29 April, 2023.
Although we celebrate all veterinary professionals around the world every day, we’re delighted that the World Veterinary Association (WVA) has created a day to amplify the extraordinary talent – and patience and grit and resilience – of those dedicated to caring for our animals.
Each World Veterinary Day carries a unique theme, and this year the WVA is shining a light on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the industry – and how to remove barriers and promote fairness for all who choose to enter the profession.
There are many organizations offering resources and building awareness around DEI policies in veterinary practices, and we’ve highlighted some of the important work and resources here.
The Diversify Veterinary Medicine Coalition
The Diversify Veterinary Medicine Coalition is on the leading edge of stronger inclusion and diversity, offering scholarships, grants, mentorship opportunities, and more, to BIPOC veterinary students. DVMC’s mission is driven by the belief that animals and pet owners receive better care through a more diverse community of veterinary professionals.
Purdue University's Center of Excellence for Diversity and Inclusion in Veterinary Medicine
Helping practices create more inclusive environments, Purdue University’s CE curriculum is called The TOGETHER Program. This certificate program offers online modules designed to empower all members of a veterinary team to nurture an inclusive environment. The program’s range of DEI topics covers stereotypes and microaggressions, effective communication techniques with multilingual colleagues, generational diversity, the LQBTQIA+ community, affirmative leadership techniques, and more.
Diversity and Inclusion on Air Podcast
As one of many examples of its mission to “shape a better future for the academic veterinary medical community worldwide,” the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) has recorded several substantive panel discussions in its podcast called Diversity and Inclusion on Air. All episodes are freely available on YouTube, and discuss everything from dealing with DEI crises to addressing the generation gap in many clinics – and much more.
Brace Space Certificate Program
“Creating a welcoming work environment for all team members requires intentional effort on our part,” says the video introducing the learning curriculum cofounded by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and its education partner, PrideVMC. Designed to be completed at each participant’s own pace, this series of modules addresses unconscious bias and marginalization, racism, LGBTQIA+ inclusion, and how to handle interpersonal violence and workplace harassment.
Pride Veterinary Medical Community (PrideVMC)
PrideVMC, formerly the Lesbian and Gay Veterinary Medical Association, has a long history of advocating for “acceptance, inclusivity, and leadership of veterinarians, veterinary technicians, veterinary medical students, of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender presentations.” A membership organization, PrideVMC hosts a number of events each year focused on DEI initiatives, and on its website links to countless fellow community-based organizations committed to allyship and greater inclusion.
These are just some of the veterinary industry’s many resources for understanding and combating the prejudices that appear in practices and in the academic setting, whether explicitly or unconsciously. We hope you find these resources useful in your continued effort to build a just, equitable, and inclusive clinical and classroom environment – on World Veterinary Day and every day.