Vet Schools

University of Prince Edward Island Atlantic Veterinary College



Although it has been established less than 30 years ago, the University of Prince Edward Island’s Atlantic Veterinary College is respected worldwide for its ability to educate veterinary students and perform world-class research.

Focusing on the “aquatic animal health program,” Anna MacDonald, AVC External Relations Officer highlighted the college’s alternative moniker. “It is known as the ‘fish vet school,’” she said. “Because of its strong aquatic animal health program.” Atlantic Veterinary College is quite comprehensive in that it provides veterinary education for many provinces including Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Labrador, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.

“Our students are at the heart of what we do every day,” says Dr. Dan Hurnik, interim dean. “We are committed to giving our students a high-quality education that will and an outstanding experience during their four years at AVC. And it shows. Our graduates are highly rated by employers because of their strong level of skill, confidence and work ethic.”

Every student has a structured and comprehensive opportunity to learn all facets of the required veterinary practice. According to MacDonald, every year provides DVM students with the necessary skills and knowledge necessary to practice effectively. DVM students learn, “the form and function of normal animals,” during the initial year and during the, “second year, they are introduced to disease processes, agents, and treatments, as well as clinical applications.”

Building upon “population medicine principles,” MacDonald explains, during the “third year, they focus on clinical studies of common domestic species.” During the fourth and final year, MacDonald explained that DVM students have more than 50 options for their clinical rotations, including internal medicine, surgery, anesthesiology, diagnostic services, diagnostic imaging, farm service, equine ambulatory service, wildlife health, aquaculture health, cardiology, theriogenology and client communications.

Another noteworthy facility at University of Prince Edward Island’s Atlantic Veterinary College, according to MacDonald, is the Maritime Quality Milk research facility. Explaining that the university’s veterinary college is an integral source or information and a, “service provider for terrestrial food animals and the agriculture industry,” MacDonald details the center’s research expertise and focus, “MQM carries out research on milk quality, health monitoring, mastitis, and Johne’s disease, and it provides training to producers and the service industry. By integrating research and service, MQM has become one of the leading dairy health centers in Canada.”

Led by Dr. Greg Keffe, MacDonald reports, the economic focus of the center is to be a knowledge base and lend services for the 750 dairy producers, along with the 350 farmers and researcher and industry colleagues to ensure the entire herd’s health is at optimal levels, promote high quality raw milk and minimize the cost of associated production.

University of Prince Edward Island’s Atlantic Veterinary College is summed up best by Dr. Hurnik. “Veterinarians are educated to protect the health of both animals and humans. They take care of the health needs of a wide variety of animal species, but they also play a critical role in environmental protection, food safety, animal welfare and public health. ”

At a Glance

Location: Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada

Programs: Master of Science, Faculty of Veterinary Science; Master of Veterinary Science, Ph.D.

DVM Students: About 240 (one-third international, mainly from the U.S.; two-thirds from Atlantic Canada)

Accreditation: American Veterinary Medical Association’s Council on Education; Canadian Veterinary Medical Association; Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (UK)

Founded: 1986 (First Class 1986; Graduated 1990)


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