Equine Internships and Externships for Veterinary Students and Graduates
While Palm Beach Equine Clinic may be known for the 28 superb veterinarians who call it home, they are also a driving force in educating the next generation of equine medical professionals. Through world-renowned equine internship and externship programs, Palm Beach Equine Clinic molds new veterinarians every day.
Each year, equine interns work with Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians for a 12-month period. Whether from externships that usually last up to two weeks and serve as an introduction to the practice or by references from top veterinarians across the U.S. and abroad, Palm Beach Equine Clinic attracts the most promising young veterinarians in the field.
Educating Equine Veterinary Students and Graduates From Around the World
Currently, Palm Beach Equine Clinic is host to recently graduated veterinary students from Oklahoma, Scotland, and Argentina. According to Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarian and board-certified surgeon Dr. Weston Davis who leads the Internship program, South Florida attracts only the best.
“We really have the cream of the crop because they have big opportunities here,” said Dr. Davis. “A lot of equine internships can offer work with one or two veterinarians, but what’s cool at Palm Beach Equine Clinic is they can pick from the collection of doctors we have.”
Palm Beach Equine Clinic interns rotate through three phases, including hands-on application of hospital anesthetization, imaging – both from ambulatory duty and elective – and working with a doctor of their choice based on their specific interests.
Dr. Davis has been with Palm Beach Equine Clinic for two years and immediately took interest in making the equine internship program the best it could be. In two years, he has made one of the world’s best programs even better.
Benefits of an Equine Internship
“I wanted to make it as organized and structured as it could be so they can get as much out of that year as possible,” he said. “The general rule is that doing a one-year equine internship puts you three to five years ahead of those that come out of school and start out on their own. Interns come out of school with a handle on book knowledge and the internships give them a good clinical appreciation for those same topics. They see a lot and do a lot under the supervision of seasoned veterinarians while they are here.”
While Palm Beach Equine internships offer obvious perks for the interns themselves, it also has added benefit for the veterinarians already at the clinic.
“The value for the interns is they get to see a tremendous amount of cases in short time, but it’s also valuable for us because they come out of school with fresh knowledge, new ideas, and keep us current and on our toes,” said Dr. Davis.
Traditionally veterinary students will fulfill their equine internship requirements and move on to find a full-time position at other practices. Dr. Davis himself did just that after graduating from the University of Florida College Of Veterinary Medicine and interning at Oakridge Equine Hospital in Oklahoma. But, the experiences available at Palm Beach Equine Clinic keep its interns staying put.
Equine Internships Kickstart Veterinary Careers
History has proven that many interns who work for Palm Beach Equine Clinic as interns go on to accept full-time positions at the clinic. One of those veterinarians is Dr. Ryan Lukens. After earning his DVM from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, he began an internship with Palm Beach Equine Clinic in 2012.
“I am so pleased that I did my internship with Palm Beach Equine,” said Dr. Lukens. “It was basically another year of school where I got to focus on exactly what I wanted to do.”
Dr. Lukens specialized in sports medicine, lameness, and diagnostic imaging, which is a passion he inherited from his father, a fellow veterinarian. His experience with Palm Beach Equine Clinic solidified that concentration thanks to the latest in veterinary technology.
“When I came to Palm Beach Equine Clinic, I had access to all the newest equipment. That gave me more tools to improve my skills under the direction of a full network of senior veterinarians,” added Dr. Lukens. “When you leave vet school, you have a question every hour of the day, and I had a number of veterinarians who were a phone call away to answer those questions. I never had to second-guess myself because they were there to help me learn. But, there also isn’t always one way to do something correctly. I learned the opinions of so many veterinarians who do things just a little differently, and it helped me to find my own way and what’s best for the horses I treat.”
Thanks to Palm Beach Equine Clinic, horse owners in South Florida and beyond have access to well-educated veterinarians with hands-on experience that is unmatched.