Scotland in the Summer: Final Year Preparations

Hello everyone! I hope you all are enjoying the Spring weather, wherever you may be.

It is now May and the lovely Spring blossoms are out in full force here in Edinburgh. We are now in the start of our Final Year Prep (FYP) course, which runs for 5 weeks and helps us to prepare for the start of our rotations in June. It has been strange adjusting from our well known schedule of having lectures, tutorials, and practicals during the week, and using any free time to catch up on school work and studying. Although we continue to have lectures throughout the FYP, they focus on how rotations will run, the lay-out of the Small Animal Hospital, resfreshers on emergency care, cardiology, behaviour, and more. It is certainly nice to have more free time, as the time we have away from classes is less focused on reviewing lectures. So far it feels more like having a job where you put in the hours during the day, and are free on weekends- and let me tell you, I am a fan!

Here is a snapshot of what a weekday/ weekend is like as a FYP student:

9-11AM: Emergency Case Studies. Here we are presented with common emergencies that present and work through the cases as a class.

11AM-1PM: Challenging Phone Calls. This important practical class allows us to have mock phone calls with “clients” (actors) to discuss difficult topics such as euthanasia, finances, and more. These classes are always stressful, but ultimately are incredibly helpful as they are a safe space to practice these skills.

1PM-2PM: Lunch Break. Since we are studying from home, it is nice to have an hour break to prepare lunch, and maybe enjoy some sunshine if the Scottish weather allows it.

2PM-3PM: Emergency Cases continued.

3PM-4PM: Professional and Clinical Skills Class. Here we often learn important skills such as interviewing, CV writing, finances. and more.

4PM-5PM: Depending on the day we may have a class here or we may be finished! I usually use this time to start studying for the NAVLE (The North American Veterinary Licensing Exam), which is a long exam that takes place in November and is for students wanting to go back to the US or Canada to practice. There are several prep courses available for purchase, and divide the studying into manageable one hour per day chunks.

Evening: Now there is time to relax! For me this usually constitutes popping to the grocery store, cooking dinner, then watching a movie.

Weekend: Since the weekends are more free, I have been able to get out and explore some sights around Edinburgh. The weather has been starting to cooperate, so this means that hillwalking allows you some great exercise and views of the city!

I hope this has allowed you to get an idea of what the FYP is like, and has made you feel like you have been a student here for a day! 🙂

-Sarah

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