Alumni Volunteer Opportunities

  • The Office of Admissions is looking for a small cohort of DVM alumni who are interested in being trained as admissions interviewers to participate in the virtual admissions interview process this year. Interviews take place in January and February, and we hope to enlist alumni who can commit to three days. The commitment includes reading applications in advance, conducting eight interviews each day, and completing an evaluation for each interviewee. You will be partnered with a faculty member on the admissions committee, so you wouldn’t be on your own!

    If you are interested, please contact Rebecca Russo.

  • Please contact Dr. Nick Frank, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs about any of the volunteer opportunities listed below.

    • Tufts Veterinary Orientation Program (Dr. Lois Wetmore)
      Facilitate for the whole day at the beginning of the semester; must complete facilitator training for 2 hours the day before; Year 1 students
    • First Year Student Advising Program (Dr. Nick Frank & Linda Mayo)
      You will join with one or two faculty members and part of an advising group of 8-10 students.  Groups meet twice a semester during Student Advising Weeks. Call for volunteers issued in July and starts in August of each year.
    • Problem Based Learning (PBL) 1 (Dr. Nick Frank)
      Facilitating team-based learning sessions with small groups of Year 1 students
    • Communications Training (Dr. Julia Wilkinson)
      Communications training for students (commitment of 1 or 1.5 days); must be trained ahead of time (training provided); dates in fall and spring; Year 1-3 students
    • Spay/Neuter surgical instruction in the Lerner Clinic (Dr. Emily McCobb)
      Opportunities in the third-year core course and Community Cat Clinics on Sundays
    • Dentistry Week (Dr. Yuki Nakayama & Kate Zukowski, CVT, VTS)
      For those interested in dentistry.  Two to four full days of hands-on small animal dentistry teaching during Dentistry Week, which is scheduled in late February or early March; Year 3 students
    • Remediation of clinical-year students (Dr. Nick Frank)
      On an as-needed basis; usually two 2-hour one-on-one sessions working with a student on history-taking, presentation of cases, or clinical reasoning; Year 4 students
    • Business/practice management clinical elective organized by Dr. Daphne Flessas, V96
      Students will do a two-week clinical elective and receive instruction on practice management.
    • Externship sites
      The need for externship sites is ongoing during the pandemic. Learn more about the program and safety protocols in place and complete the externship site form if you're interested in hosting a student.
    • Selective sites
      The goal of these pre-clinical experiences are to provide students with an opportunity to personalize their educational process. Learn more about the program and complete the selective site form if you're interested in hosting a student.
  • The International Veterinary Medicine program has been sending students abroad since 1982. Our international programs are a hallmark of the IVM experience. These hands-on opportunities offer students the chance to put their knowledge into action, improve technical skills, build an international network, and gain perspective. Often, international projects can be transformative for students, who return to campus to share their lessons with the community.

    International Alumni Student Service Program

  • Adventures in Veterinary Medicine

    Contact:
      Danielle Buczek

    Adventures in Veterinary Medicine (AVM) is a career exploration program for middle school, high school, and college students and adults hosted on Cummings School campus. The AVM curriculum includes a variety of classes taught by faculty, staff, students, and community members. Opportunities are available for alumni to join the program as teachers. Presentations usually last one hour. Most are lecture style with PowerPoint support, but interactive components are welcome. This can be a one-time commitment or repeatable presentation options are available, with sessions running from April–August each year.

    Paid position $75/hr

     

    Outreach Requests/You-Be-The-Veterinarian Program

    Contact:
      Danielle Buczek

    This program involves working with groups of children of all ages to provide educational presentations in the community. Volunteers give an age-appropriate presentation (what it’s like to be a veterinarian, pet care, pet first aid, nutrition, dog jobs, behavior, etc.,). On-campus events take about 1 hour to complete. Off-campus program length varies depending on the specific event. Groups are scheduled throughout the year based off community request. This can be a one-time commitment or repeatable presentation options are available.

     

    One Health Lessons

    Contact: Dr. Deborah Thomson

    One Health Lessons is a global organization that inspires children and adults to value One Health.  Volunteers are needed to bring One Health Lessons into more communities around the world! View this handout to learn more, or visit their website.

     

    Massachusetts 4-H Program

    Contact: Director of UMass Extension 4-H Youth Development or Dr. Terry Taylor

    Mass 4-H is a youth development program open to all young people ages 5 through 18 throughout the Commonwealth.  Many of you were involved in 4-H growing up but  may not know that 4-H is thriving in Massachusetts!  Tufts University conducted a longitudinal study looking at the positive impact of 4-H on youth development and found that 4-Hers were more likely to become active members of their community, make healthy life choices, choose science/technology based careers, and excel academically.  It makes sense for our alums to be more involved with this program!  Members are not only involved in animal science programs, but  a wide range of other activities including STEM programs, gardening, community service projects and public speaking.

    If you are interested in learning more about the MA 4-H program check out their website. Under the club directory you can see what clubs are in your county and usually the email of the group leader.   Opportunities can range from just visiting a 4-H club or fair, giving a talk or more formal involvement as a group leader. The opportunities are endless!!! You can also check out their current events.

     

    STEM

    Contact:  Erin King

    Throughout the year there are a number of opportunities to promote STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) throughout the community. Volunteers work in teams to bring interactive and creative activities to students, combining a passion for animals with STEM education goals.

    There is a great desire for project expansion which is dependent upon more volunteers!  On-going programs include the list below:

    • East Middle School 7th (early to mid- March) and 8th grade (late May) presentations
    • 5th grade presentation to Grafton Elementary (late Feb or early March)
    • Saturday presentation to Girl Scouts in the fall (October)
    • 6th grade presentations in Grafton public schools (program currently in development)

    Blackstone Valley STEM Conference in the fall. Around 100+ children come to campus for an all day event filled with workshops and presentations from community members.

  • Disaster Response/SMART

    Contact: Dr. David Schwarz

    There are numerous ways that veterinarians can contribute to emergency and disaster management in Massachusetts. On a local level, joining or starting a Disaster Animal Response Team (DART) provides important subject expertise about caring for animals. The local Medical Reserve Corp (MRC) also needs veterinary support. Basic Animal Rescue Training (BART) is a program that has veterinarians teaching First Responders how to appropriately handle and care for animals that they may encounter on their calls. There is training available to participate in this course.

    The State of Massachusetts Animal Response Team (SMART) welcomes veterinary participation in its mission to train and prepare the state for all emergencies and disasters using best practices and standard operating procedures to care for all animals in the state.

     

    Feral Cat Clinics

    There are several feral cat organizations throughout the Commonwealth which hold monthly sterilization and vaccination clinics.  Volunteer Surgeons are always needed!  Clinics take place at various locations, frequently at MSPCA facility sites (Methuen and Boston) on Sunday mornings.

     

    Project Samaná

    Contact: Dr. Bob Labdon  or Dr. Jay Merriam

    Tired of the routine of everyday practice?  Want to stretch your professional skills and give back to a world that really needs you? Feel the need to learn on the fly?  Collaborate with colleagues, students, and friends while making new ones, all while immersed in a vibrant, colorful culture?

    For the past 25 years, a volunteer veterinary team composed of large and small animal veterinarians, technicians and students have made biannual trips to the Samaná peninsula of the Dominican Republic to conduct intense one-week clinics.

    We spay/neuter/vaccinate the dogs and cats, and castrate, de-worm and provide care to the working horses. Our team partners with the local veterinarians and caregivers serving the lush, tropical region of Samaná.  Large and small animal veterinarians, as well as technicians and students, are needed for upcoming teams.

    Interested? For a life-changing, fun week visit the Project Semana website.

     

    Tufts at Tech

    Contact: Dr. Greg Wolfus

    Tufts at Tech is an innovative teaching facility for students at Cummings School and students at Worcester Technical High School. Under the leadership of Drs. Greg Wolfus and Jenni Grady, the Tufts at Tech student-run veterinary clinic provides low-cost care for financially-qualified family pets within Central Massachusetts’ underserved communities. Fourth-year DVM candidates and Worcester Technical High School students within the Veterinary Assisting program work collaboratively under the direction of experienced veterinarians and certified veterinary technicians to provide quality primary care for underserved community pets. Volunteer veterinarians are routinely needed to assist fourth-year students work through general practice cases!  Volunteers can volunteer for a single day or on a routine basis.  Regardless, alum should visit this clinic and be proud of the great work taking place in the both the Tufts veterinary education and in the Worcester community!

    Volunteer Requirements: MA license, proof of health insurance, CORI report through Worcester public schools

     

    Worcester Veterinary Outreach

    Contact: Dr. Emily McCobb

    The Worcester Veterinary Outreach project aims to help at risk human and animal populations.  Twice a week during the school year a handful of Cummings School and Becker students, under the supervision of volunteer practicing veterinarians and faculty from the two schools, hold free clinics at Worcester Housing Authority (WHA) sites throughout the city.  Cummings School has partnered with Becker College and WHA to provide preventive care, routine check-ups, care for minor infection or skin issues and vaccinations to those without access to veterinary care. The pet care team sees an average of about 500 patients each year, and offer vouchers for important services that can’t be offered on site, such as spaying and neutering. They also offer services for the vulnerably housed to have their pets seen at  The Mustard Seed soup kitchen and St. John’s Food for the Poor soup kitchen and food pantry a few times each semester. Volunteer veterinarians undergo a brief training, which includes shadowing current staff for one clinic, and must agree to follow clinic SOPs.  Spanish speaking veterinarians are highly needed. Time commitments may vary based on need and availability.

    http://www.telegram.com/news/20161204/veterinary-students-bring-pet-care-to-those-in-need

     

    Paws for People

    Contact:  Dr. Lisa Freeman

    Tufts Paws for People provides education, evaluation, and mentorship for individuals looking to visit facilities with their pet. The program has grown to include over 100 animal/handler teams, who visit a variety of programs including elder care facilities, hospice centers, at-risk youth, adult and adolescent mental health care, hospitals, public schools, libraries, and others. Opportunities to volunteer include:

    1. Become a Pet Partner® with your animal companion
    2. Become a Pet Partners® Ambassador after completing a  Pet Partners® Handler Training course and assist new teams on their initial visits to a facility.
    3. You can volunteer at a Pet Partners® Team evaluation. Evaluations are offered up to 9 times per year at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. As part of the volunteer team, you can help to assess potential Pet Partners® teams. Five to six volunteers are needed at each evaluation.
    4. Tufts Paws for People participates in a variety of local events that help to raise awareness about our program and animal assisted activities, such as Cummings School Open House, Pet Rock Festival. We can always use help at these events to spread the word about our program.
  • Goal: to provide Cummings School students with the opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue with Tufts DVM alumni from diverse backgrounds and specialties to gain perspective on how their degree might be put into practice.

    Learn More