Wisconsin National Primate Research Center

Description of Elective Experience: 

Externs will work with both Old World (rhesus macaques [Macaca mulatta] and cynomolgus macaques [Macaca fascicularis]) and New World (common marmosets [Callithrix jacchus]) primates. Externs will perform daily medical rounds and provide routine medical treatment to sick and injured animals. They will participate in tuberculosis testing of monkeys and will perform tuberculin skin tests, venipuncture, and physical exams.  Externs may have the opportunity to assist during surgical procedures, perform dental prophylaxis and dental extractions, perform ultrasound exams, gain experience in the clinical pathology laboratory, and participate in necropsies.

Institutional and Educational Resources - staffing, equipment, etc.: 

Institutional Resources: 6 veterinarians (2 have ACLAM certification)

Educational Resources Available: Morbidity and mortality rounds occur two times per month. Continuing education topics are presented two times per month. Comparative medicine and JAALAS journals and many nonhuman primate reference books are available on site.

Equipment: ultrasound, digital radiology, digital dental radiology, standard anesthesia monitoring equipment

Student Responsibilities - what is expected of students in terms of hours, days of the week, shadowing or actual support?: 

Externs must provide proof of negative tuberculosis status and previous measles vaccination. Externs are also required to read some materials before they can have contact with animals (materials can be read before arriving for the externship if desired). Externs will do a short presentation on a nonhuman primate topic or case of interest during their visit. 

Externs will work Monday- Friday.  Hours per day will depend on procedures that are occurring but average is 7:30 am- 4 pm.

Extern will always be directly supervised by either a veterinarian or a veterinary technician.  A veterinarian will always be on site when the extern is there, although the extern will do some procedures (for example, dental prophylaxis) with a veterinary technician.

Student Housing (include costs, amenities, pet friendly, contact info if different from elective contact info): 

There is no parking available at the primate center.  There is 2-hour street parking on many streets around the center, so some people park on the street and move their cars every 2 hours.  It is not always possible for externs to leave procedures to move their cars though.  Externs can also rent a parking spot from the Budget Bicycle center about 1 block away.  Or, there is free parking around 1-2 miles away from the primate center so some externs have parked there and either walked, biked, or taken the bus from there.  Another previous extern found a parking spot that is an 8 minute walk from the primate center and costs $2.50 per day, and this information can be sent on request.

There is university dormitory housing available about a mile from the primate center.  The rates are around $100- 150 per week.  Parking is extra.  Rooms are furnished.  You would have to share a bathroom.  There is a refrigerator in the room, and there is a food service dining hall nearby where you can eat.  We have had externs stay here before.  The accommodations aren't luxurious, but previous externs haven't complained.  Web site is https://fisc.cals.wisc.edu/housing/short-term-guests/.  These are the short-course dorms, so sometimes these will be full if there is a short course going on.  No pets.

Sublets can sometimes be found from the following site: http://campusareahousing.wisc.edu.  There may or may not much available for short term or  in the middle of the semester and most places are likely not furnished.  We have had externs find housing from Madison Craig's list http://madison.craigslist.org/.  Another option is to contact the vet school at oaa@vetmed.wisc.edu to see if any vet students have any available space for the time of the externship.

There are some extended-stay hotels around too.  These are farther from campus and more expensive than the dorm housing.  We have had externs stay at these with pets before.

Michelle Harke
Contact email: 
1220 Capitol Ct
Madison, WI 53715
United States
Animal Type: 
Practice or Institution Type: 
Is student housing available?: 
Hours of supervision by a licensed veterinarian per week: