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Section 1: Introduction

1.1 DVM Clinical Program and Policy Manual Introduction

The online Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine DVM Program Handbook and Policy Manual is a guide to current policies, standards, procedures, and resources which govern students in the DVM program at VMCVM. In addition, students participating in the clinical program are subject to policies established by both the VMCVM and Virginia Tech.

Every effort is made to ensure the information contained in this online handbook is accurate and current. The VMCVM reserves the right to make changes and revisions in the applicable regulations, procedures, policies, requirements, and other information contained on the website at any time without notice. The online version itself, however, (as opposed to a hardcopy or PDF summary), governs.

For questions regarding the DVM Clinical Year Program Handbook and Policy Manual, please contact Dr. Jacque Pelzer in the Office of Academic Affairs.

1.2 College Mission Statement

The mission of this college is to protect and enhance animal, human, and environmental health and welfare through:

  • The education of a diverse population of professional, post-graduate, and undergraduate students in preparation for careers in the broad areas of veterinary medicine, biomedical sciences, and public health;
  • The creation, dissemination, and application of new medical and public health knowledge via discovery, publication, education, and engagement;
  • Provision of excellent and compassionate clinical service to animals, animal owners, and producers in Virginia, Maryland, and the surrounding region.

1.2.1 Principles of Community

Virginia Tech is a public land-grant university, committed to teaching and learning, research, and outreach to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world community. Learning from the experiences that shape Virginia Tech as an institution, we acknowledge those aspects of our legacy that reflected bias and exclusion.

Therefore, we adopt and practice the following principles as fundamental to our on- going efforts to increase access and inclusion and to create a community that nurtures learning and growth for all of its members:

  • We affirm the inherent dignity and value of every person and strive to maintain a climate for work and learning based on mutual respect and understanding.
  • We affirm the right of each person to express thoughts and opinions freely. We encourage open expression within a climate of civility, sensitivity, and mutual respect.
  • We affirm the value of human diversity because it enriches our lives and the University. We acknowledge and respect our differences while affirming our common humanity.
  • We reject all forms of prejudice and discrimination, including those based on age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, and veteran status. We take individual and collective responsibility for helping to eliminate bias and discrimination and for increasing our own understanding of these issues through education, training, and interaction with others.
  • We pledge our collective commitment to these principles in the spirit of the Virginia Tech motto of Ut Prosim (That I May Serve).

1.3 AVMA COE Accreditation

The college is fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association’s Council of Education (AVMA COE). The last AVMA COE site visit was in 2021 and the next visit is scheduled for 2028.

The accreditation process involves a very comprehensive and detailed examination of a college’s programs and the accreditation team conducts an extensive site visit in which they rigorously inspect and evaluate the physical plant and facilities, budgets, operations, and policies. They also conduct extensive interviews with faculty, staff, students, alumni, and university administrators in order to ascertain their perspectives on the strengths and weaknesses of the college’s programs.