Offsite Electives

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Description of Elective Experience:
  • Field-based wildlife veterinary externship
  • Clinical and pathological workups with state wildlife veterinarians
  • Marine mammal, terrestrial and avian wildlife species
  • Fish pathology lab
  • Sea lion capture and anesthesia for radio telemetry placement
  • Morbidity and mortality workup from field to diagnostic lab
  • Population and reproductive studies
  • Fish hatchery health assessments and treatments

About our program

  • The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) - Wildlife Health and Population Lab Program has two primary functions:

    • To provide fish and wildlife health support to all aspects of the agency and its more than 1,000 employees as part of the agencies' mission to protect and enhance fish and wildlife and their habitats for use and enjoyment by present and future generations of Oregonians. 
    • To provide support to field biologists by processing tissues for characterizing population and age structure of harvested animals. 
  • The goal of the ODFW veterinary student externship is to introduce 4th year veterinary students via a clinical rotation, to the profession of agency-based wildlife veterinary medicine and provide a hands-on understanding of the types of tasks and activities our wildlife veterinarians engage in including:
  • Disease outbreak investigation
  • Training biologists in safe wildlife capture and sampling techniques
  • Wildlife disease surveillance
  • Participating in large captures of various wildlife species for translocation events, wildlife health evaluation, or research     
  • Eligibility for the Externship:
  • Must be a senior student in good academic standing from an accredited college of veterinary medicine. We accept up to 6 students annually for 3 -6 week rotations.
    Possible activities:
  • Capture Events (deer, elk, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, pronghorn antelope, sage grouse, harbor seals, sea lions, etc.), wildlife disease outbreak investigation, health checks/ disease sampling on game birds such as grouse, pheasants and quail that are being moved to augment other populations, working at Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) check stations during deer and elk hunting seasons, caring for orphaned wildlife,  performing fish health checks at hatcheries, and  population laboratory wildlife tooth age and reproductive tract processing.*
  • Students may conduct a project during their externship involving researching a current Oregon wildlife health topic for presentation to staff or posting on our website*
  • *The timing and occurrence of potential activities listed above are subject to change due to many factors including weather, task priorities, emergency outbreaks, etc.. Humane euthanasia of injured wildlife or invasive species or as part of management activities is conducted routinely by our veterinary staff.
  • Submit a cover letter and resume or CV and  Letter of Recommendation from veterinary faculty
  • Your cover letter should include the dates you are interested in and would like us to consider.  Please provide multiple possible dates if available as we allow only one student at a time with no overlap of externship periods.
  • Please address material to Dr. Julia Burco and send to or fax to (541) 757-4252
Description of Elective Experience:

Externship Program  (

The Florida Veterinary Referral Center (FVRC) externship program provides veterinary students the opportunity to gain experience in a state-of-the-art specialty referral and emergency facility dedicated to delivering both high quality customer service and patient care. Our program is designed to allow senior veterinary students the option to choose from a variety of small animal clinical services such as Internal Medicine, Oncology, Surgery, and Emergency & Critical Care. Students may select one area of interest or rotate through several services during their externship experience.

Prerequisites for Externship:

  1. Must have primary professional interest in small animal medicine, surgery, oncology, neurology, or emergency and critical care
  2. Preferences given to 4th year veterinary students
  3. Students are responsible for securing their own housing and transportation during their externship
  4. Letter of Intent – include the specific dates you would like to participate as well as areas of interest
  5. Resume
  6. Two months notice preferred
  7. Proof of health insurance & liability coverage required

If you are a veterinary student and would like more information about our program, please contact:

Laura Breunig, DVM
Assistant Medical Director

Description of Elective Experience:

Care Center is a 24/7 AAHA accredited Emergency and Referral Animal Hospital.  We not only offer state of the art 24 hour emergency care, but also a multitude of other specialties.  Some of these include Surgery, Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Diagnostic Imaging, and Radiation Oncology.

Description of Elective Experience:

Exposure to the mission and career opportunities of regulatory medicine/public practice with USDA-APHIS-VS.  Disease surveillance for foreign animal and reportable (Program) diseases (avian influenza, bovine TB, bovine brucellosis, etc.) with our field veterinarians (Veterinary Medical Officers - VMOs) throughout the State of California; animal inspection (e.g. horses, ornamental fish, day-old chicks) and international animal movement (imports and exports) with Port VMOs at our Los Angeles Animal Import Center and Port of San Francisco; international movement documentation with Export veterinarians in our Sacramento Service Center; inspection of facilities with VMOs that export and import restricted animal products in Northern California (San Francisco area) and Southern California (Los Angeles and San Diego areas).  Also partnering with USDA, Food Safety Inspection Services (FSIS) to provide exposure to the mission and career opportunities in safeguarding the meat and other animal products that enter the food chain through slaughter establishments.

Description of Elective Experience:

Potential experiences includes animal capture by physical and chemical means, field assistance to biologists and managers, biological sampling of
animals, sample logistics and preparation, necropsy, data analysis, general office work - reports, data analysis and presentation of data and summaries.


Description of Elective Experience:

The USDA-ARS Avian Disease & Oncology Laboratory is part of the in-house research branch of USDA. Our laboratory focuses on avian tumor viruses. The student will experience poultry research within a laboratory setting. This may include time in necropsy identifying lesions and collecting samples, as well as time in the laboratory performing techniques such as virus isolation/cell culture, DNA/RNA isolation, PCR, real-time PCR, sequencing, pyrosequencing, flow cytometry, fluorescent microscopy, and immunohistochemistry.

Description of Elective Experience:

Small animal general practice- offers opportunities in learning more about general health exams, problem exams, radiology, laboratory and surgery. Some participation in surgery is possible. 

Description of Elective Experience:

Three doctor mixed animal practice in NW PA.. Student will participate in small animal surgery and small animal outpatient appointments. In addition, student will have the opportunity to provide primary management to "day patients", including examination, diagnostics, client communication, therapeutic treatments, and surgical intervention, with oversight by perceptor.  

Description of Elective Experience:

Interact with clients during examinations, developing communication skills as you gather history and create a treatment plan.   Gain experience with diagnostic equipment, which includes digital x-rays, ultrasound and in-house laboratory testing.  Gain experience with anesthesia induction and monitoring during surgical procedures and post operate care.  Develop understanding of business and back office tasks associated with veterinary practice. 

Description of Elective Experience:

Our hospital is open 7 days a week; students will assist doctors in exams (taking histories, handling etc) for well and sick pets.  Observe and assist in surgery and all other positions in the hospital, and assist the ward nurses.   This is done in an effort to provide the student with a full understanding and appreciation of how a hospital functions.    7% of our practice is Exotic and small mammals.