Hellooo, so I realised that vet school interview season is nearly here and so I thought I’d write a few lines of advice for hopeful applicants.
1. Be patient. Don’t stress about when you get an interview invite. I swear vet schools run in their own time zone and appear to send invitations randomly. I didn’t get my interview invite to RVC until February, by which time I’d already had 3 rejections.
2. Know the interview structure. Different vet schools run their interviews differently and you should prepare for them accordingly. RVC has a multiple mini station set up with a group task afterwards. Bristol has a one-on-one followed by a multiple stations of more practical tests. And Cambridge varies college to college. If you don’t know how the interview will run, make sure you find out - it’s bound to be online, in the prospectus or just phone the admissions office!
3. Don’t stress about what to wear. Seriously, just look smart and be comfortable.
4. Know your personal statement inside out. This is pretty much the only thing interviewers have to base the interview on so make sure you know it better than they do. Read it again and make a list of questions you would ask if you were interviewing yourself. Then, research the answers and have them clear in your head. There’s a small chance something will come up but even if they ask something different you’ll be in a better position to steer it towards something you know. And don’t assume they won’t ask easy questions - my friend was asked ‘What are puppies vaccinated against?’ It’s simple but very important knowledge.
5. Have an opinion. Vets love a good debate and you will almost definitely be asked about a current issue or ethical dilemma. Remember it’s absolutely fine to have an unpopular opinion as long as you can back it up with clear reasoning and it’s something you really believe in. Be up to date with scientific news as this is impressive to interviewers.
6. It’s not just about what you know. Every animal has an owner so it’s important that you get on well with people and can immediately build a relationship when meeting someone for the first time. Eye contact, smiling and openness are invaluable interview skills.
7. Use your time wisely. This might be your only shot so well and truly make the most of it. You’ve done fantastically to get an interview, you’re wonderful and you deserve this chance as much as anyone else there. Don’t be afraid to dazzle the interviewer with your knowledge, your passion or your drive. (Obviously don’t be overly confident and try and outdo the interviewer!)
I hope this is useful and best of luck and wishes over the coming months!!