Are you interested in attending veterinary medical school? If so, it's important to follow procedures and meet all of the required deadlines. 


This e-newsletter will help to guide you through the process with important information about applying for financial aid, and the ins and outs of admissions decisions and deposits. 


And finally, even if your applications aren't successful at first, don't despair.  There is life after being denied admission, as demonstrated by a student profiled in this e-newsletter. 


Learn more now by checking out this edition of the Pre-Vet Advisor e-newsletter, created for you by the

Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC).  



In This Issue

What to do After You Submit Your Application

Don't Wait to Apply for Financial Aid

April 15: An Important Date

Is There Life After Being Denied Admission to Veterinary Medical School?

You Submitted Your Application...Now What?  

If you have applied for admission to a first-year class beginning in the fall of 2012, you will receive one of three possible decisions.  Two of the decisions - admission or denial of admission - are rather obvious.  The third possibility is being placed on a wait-list.  Wait-listed applicants may receive an offer of admission at a later date if space becomes available in the class.

Typically in higher education, wait-listed applicants have a roughly 50/50 chance of receiving a full offer.  Since there is a long wait time, some wait-listed applicants become anxious about if and when they will receive a full offer, but be assured that admissions offices will contact you as soon as they have information to provide. The timing will depend on how quickly admitted applicants make their decisions about which school to attend - and those decisions are often dependent upon financial aid information.  Therefore, it becomes extremely important for all applicants to apply early for financial aid -- even before they know if they are admitted.

File Early for Financial Aid

Every veterinary school in the United States or the Caribbean requires that applicants complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) in order to be considered for financial aid. Some schools have institutional forms in addition to the FAFSA, which may be used to determine eligibility for other forms of assistance, including need and merit-based scholarships. The earliest practical deadline to file FAFSA is January 31 when employers and others are required to have sent income statements (W-2 forms) to you and your parents. We encourage you to file your FAFSA and all other school-specific aid application materials as soon as possible.

The FAFSA is available at:

If you wait until you have an offer of admission before completing the FAFSA, it may not be possible to receive a financial aid package before the April 15 deposit deadline.  As you will read below, you will lose your seat on April 15 if you do not place a deposit by then.

Filing the FAFSA early (and not later than February 15) provides benefits for you and others as well.  Some students will become wait-listed and will not get a full offer of admission until those with full offers of admission decline all but one offer.  Most students do not want to decline offers until they know their expenses and financial aid.  So for your sake and the sake of the wait-listed students, please file the FAFSA early.

Financial aid packages at veterinary schools consist primarily of loans, and most of these are federal loans, processed by the schools' aid offices.  Timely submission of your FAFSA will ensure that you are considered for federal loans, which typically carry lower interest rates and more favorable terms than private loans. Please note that, as of July 1, 2012, graduate and professional students are no longer eligible for subsidized loans.

The most important thing you can do to prepare to finance your veterinary school education is to be aware of each schools' aid application requirements and submission deadlines.


The Importance of April 15: Admissions Decisions and Deposits

All U.S. veterinary schools (except Tuskegee University) have agreed to not require applicant decisions and/or deposits until April 15. This applies to students' acceptance of admissions offers, financial aid offers, and scholarships.

The idea behind this April 15 agreement is to level the playing field, give admissions committees adequate time to evaluate applications and make decisions, and then allow adequate time for applicants to consider their options.  Most schools require an average deposit of $500, while other veterinary schools simply require a signed statement of your intent to enroll.  Neither international schools nor Tuskegee University are bound by this April 15 policy agreement.

If a student fails to communicate a decision or submit a deposit by April 15, he/she may lose his/her offers of admission and financial aid.  Most students are very good about making and communicating positive enrollment decisions but some students do not feel a need to inform other schools which have extended offers that they will not be attending. This failure to communicate has a direct impact on wait-listed students because admissions officers cannot extend full offers of admission to wait-listed students until they receive formal communication from the students who are declining offers.

If you are fortunate enough to receive more than one offer of admission, you should be sure to communicate your decision to each school to which you have been admitted so that wait-listed applicants can be notified of their status.

You can change your mind after April 15 if you receive a late offer of admission. Typically, you may lose any deposit you have placed elsewhere.  Lastly, please be aware that it is considered unethical to place multiple deposits.  

Quick Links and Important Dates


Don't miss the Career Fair: Sunday, March 11 

APRIL 2012: VMCAS  testing for the 2013 application

VMCAS will launch in early June 2012

Tuesday, October 2,  
1 p.m. EST: VMCAS 2013 application cycle deadline.
Is There Life After Rejection from Veterinary Medical School?  The Answer is a Resounding "Yes"

Rayne in Washington DC


Rayne Johnson in Washington, DC 


It's not easy to schedule an interview with Rayne Johnson. "One of my patients is getting a liver biopsy this morning and the time slot is dependent on the results from a test that is pending this morning," she writes when an interview needs rescheduling.

Such is the life of a busy clinician and fourth-year veterinary medical student - but it almost wasn't so.

Aspiring veterinary students often become totally focused on getting into veterinary medical school, says Rayne, and she was no exception. There was just one problem - she was denied admission and was put on a wait list without much hope of acceptance.

What was her reaction? "It hurt," she says. For a while, she was devastated, but then she "decided that rejection from veterinary school was not what defined me."


Find out what she did and next and  how she recovered here.



Have You Considered a Career in Public Health Veterinary Medicine?
The comparative medicine approach taught in veterinary schools makes veterinarians uniquely qualified to address important public health issues. Veterinarians work in all areas of public health, including epidemiology, environmental health, global health, infectious disease investigation and control, and homeland security.   

You should consider combining a professional public health degree with a DVM if you: are a self-starter and an inquisitive person interested in population health issues; you want to have a greater impact on the health of both animals and people; and you want to expand your long-term career options and opportunities in public practice.  

Public health degrees can be completed before the DVM, concurrently with the DVM, or after completion of the DVM degree.  Professional public health degrees include:

    MPH  -   Master of Public Health
    MPVM -  Master of Preventive Veterinary Medicine
    MSPH  - Master of Science in Public Health
    MSVPH -Master of Science in Veterinary Public Health
    MVPH -  Master of Veterinary Public Health

In addition, many veterinary colleges offer academic degrees such as the MS and PhD that allow students to focus on public health topics.

See an example of a veterinarian who works in public health here


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February 2012

Coordinated by the AAVMC Admissions Committee 

Newsletter Consultant: Joe Piekunka   


Association of American

Veterinary Medical Colleges

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