info@avc.care
817-783-2257
6800 East Highway 67 Alvarado, TX 76009
Immerse yourself in the world of veterinary medicine with Alvarado Veterinary Clinic's comprehensive externship program designed for 3rd and 4th-year veterinary students. Join peers from renowned institutions worldwide for a hands-on experience in our esteemed mixed animal practice. As an extern, you'll benefit from invaluable hands-on experience, gaining practical skills and insights that will set you apart in your future career.

Tailored to your learning objectives, our externships range from 1 to 6 weeks, offering flexibility to explore various specialties. Convenient accommodations located just behind the clinic ensure a seamless experience, allowing you to focus on your learning and development without the added stress of finding housing.

At Alvarado, you'll witness the breadth of veterinary care, from small animals to equine and food animal practices. Engage in case workups, surgeries, farm visits, and after-hours emergencies alongside our expert team. This diverse exposure will broaden your knowledge base and prepare you for a wide range of veterinary challenges in your future practice.
Benefit from networking opportunities and mentorship from seasoned professionals, gaining insights and guidance to shape your veterinary career. Our commitment is to provide an experience equivalent to specialty clinics, equipping you with invaluable skills for your future career advancement.

Ready to dive in? Contact extern.program@AVC.care for more information or to apply. Take the first step towards a rewarding veterinary career with Alvarado Veterinary Clinic, where every experience is designed to propel you toward success.
Interested in advancing your education? Discover the advantages of our renowned 1-year internship program [link], which often welcomes outstanding externs from previous years. This exclusive opportunity allows you to deepen your understanding and refine your skills alongside seasoned professionals, paving the way for a successful career in veterinary medicine.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why do I want to spend my externship at Alvarado Veterinary Clinic (AVC)?
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    Joining AVC for your clinical year is an excellent opportunity to partner with a large, progressive hospital that has a high case load of small animal, equine, and food animal cases. AVC has been blessed with externs for over 15 years, and the culture of the hospital and the Doctors is very receptive to having students. Also, the majority of all interns have been selected from previous externs. Externships allow students and the hospital to make sure we are a good fit for each other. The needs and wants of externs are important to us, and we try hard to provide you with a fun, hands on learning environment.

  • How many veterinarians/ interns work at the clinic?
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    We have 11 full time clinicians and 5 interns.
  • How do I apply?
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    The easiest communication is through e-mails. If you are applying for your 3rd or 4th year, we accept all students from accredited Veterinary Schools on a first-come, first-served basis. Every attempt is made to not turn anyone away, which means the earlier you can schedule your externship the better. Also, having more than one date possible makes the process easier.

    For additional information and/or to apply for our externship program please email extern.program@AVC.care.

  • What information do you need to apply?
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    You are welcome to contact us earlier, but we will not schedule you on the calendar until you have the available dates from your school. When you have that information, let us know and we will move forward.

  • Will I be there with other externs?
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    Usually, yes. We have 50 – 60 visiting externs scheduled annually.

  • Where do I stay?
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    AVC currently owns 2 double wide trailers on the campus. One is usually interns only, and the other house is shared by interns and externs. Interns in the shared house have their own room. There are 2 rooms for externs, with 2 twin beds in each room. It is possible you will be sharing a room. Rarely, we have opposite genders in the same room. Let us know if that is a huge problem, although it usually only happens once or twice a year. Please remember that you are a guest in the home of the clinic, and more importantly the interns. They are sharing the kitchen, bathrooms, etc. with you.

  • Do I need to bring things for the house?
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    All bedding, etc. will be supplied and should be cleaned when you are leaving for the next student. Some people bring their own pillow and towels, but everything is here if needed. I would recommend getting here first, assess the situation, then see what, if anything, is needed as far as food, etc. There is a grocery store less than a quarter of a mile away.

  • How do I get there?
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    Our mailing address is Alvarado Veterinary Clinic, 6800 East Highway 67 Alvarado, Texas 76009. If you are flying the DFW airport or Love Field, Dallas are both 60 miles away. We are not able to pick you up at the airport. You can either rent a car or take a cab. No public transportation is available. If you rent a car, rent from a carrier that allows you to return the car to Burleson, Texas. AVC will help you return the rental car on the next working day. The cost for a compact is usually $80 or so. If you take a cab, the cost will be around $120. Often times, after being here for 2 weeks, you can find an extern or someone at the clinic that can drop you off at the airport for your trip home.

  • What clinical supplies should I bring?
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    If your school issues a name tag, please bring that. You can bring your own stethoscope, etc. You are not required to have any clinical supplies.

  • What should I wear?
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    Our normal attire is boots, jeans, and a scrub shirt. It is wise to have scrubs, coveralls, and possible mud boots. Summers are hot and winters are variable.

  • Are there laundry facilities available?
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    We have industrial washers and dryers that externs are welcome to use, especially on the weekends. If you leave your private clothes in the washer, you may find them floating around the clinic, so be warned! The house you will stay at has a washer and dryer.

  • When should I arrive?
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    Most externships start on Monday. We usually ask for you to arrive on Sunday evening. It is not unusual to walk into an emergency case on Sunday, so some externs hit the ground running.

    When you are getting close to the clinic, call the main clinic line at 817-783-2257. The recording will get you in touch with the doctor on call. Call them and let them know you are close, and they will give you instructions on where to go, etc. The extern house is directly behind the cow barn, so if in doubt go there and you will usually find a friendly soul to help get you settled in. If you have any problems, my personal cell phone is Kevin Beam, 817-648-5121.

  • What is my schedule?
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    Rounds start in the horse barn at 7:30am. That is a good place to start on your first day. After settling into the routine of the clinic, most externs arrive around 7am and help the interns with care of hospitalized cases. Rounds end and the clinic opens at 8 am. AVC is run as a non-appointment clinic. We do schedule surgeries and farm calls. Externs are encouraged to gravitate to their areas of interest. You are welcome to spend the day out in the barns, in surgery, or on farm calls. We usually try to break for lunch from noon until 1pm. There are numerous fast food offerings within 3 miles of the clinic, including a Burger King next door. Some people bring lunch and get involved in a game of dominos at the clinic. Many externs walk back to their house for lunch. At 1pm we start back. Often major orthopedic surgeries are scheduled at 1:30. Externs are invited to scrub in on select surgeries, and occasionally we are able to have you perform a surgery on animals who do not have any owners presented to us from a shelter. We usually shut down around 6pm. Externs are encouraged to stick around and help with emergencies, although that is not technically part of your externship. Most externs feel the after hour cases are a lot of fun and a large part of their enjoyment of the entire experience. Friday mornings we meet in the equine surgery room at 6:45 a.m. for breakfast and journal rounds. Each week 2 interns will make a presentation, one large animal, and one small animal. This will take the place of rounds on Friday. Saturday we do not have rounds, and the clinic is open from 8-12. Occasionally, externs need to be gone for the weekend, and that is okay. We encourage you to be here if possible, and asked to communicate with the doctor on call. Most schools require a minimum of 40 hours a week.

  • Do I get paid?
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    AVC used to offer a small stipend of 75 dollars a week. We have to report that to the IRS via a W-2. Now, with new health care laws, externs are being looked at as employees, pushing us into different requirements as a business. The 75 dollar stipend is a casualty of Obamacare, and is no longer offered. Sorry.

  • What paperwork and insurance do I need to fill out?
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    Our practice manager, Albin Peters, prefers to get all paperwork filled out via email before you arrive. We also ask for everyone to email us a picture with their information. I often have an opportunity to give job references and internship recommendations, sometime over a year after your externship, so a picture to match to a name is very important. Externs will be working hands on, and need to have insurance coverage through PLIT. You can acquire this insurance by selecting the following link:

    https://hub.dmplocal.com/main/?p=surveysystem.respond.intro&survey_id=4403

    Once you have been accepted, please forward a personal photo and confirmation of your Student Professional Liability insurance to:

    extern.program@AVC.care.

  • Can I bring my dog?
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    No. We are stretched for room.

  • Can I bring my family?
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    Some externs have chosen to stay off site and have their families. We are very family oriented, but do not have room to house additional people the majority of the time. If you have a special request, please let us know. We will make every effort to accommodate you while not inconveniencing another.

  • Do I have to stay at the clinic house?
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    No. There are 4 hotels within a mile of the clinic. Also, you are welcome to stay with family, friends around the area. Some externs find they miss out on afterhours by staying off-site, but we do not mind either way.

  • Does the clinic see many exotic animals?
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    2-3 cases a week. Not much.

  • How many weeks can I stay for an externship?
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    I recommend trying to stay at least 2 weeks. Some schools, (Western, Purdue, etc.) Need their students to stay longer. If we have room, you can stay as long as needed.

  • What happens if I need a day off or am sick?
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    We rarely have a problem with students getting the required 40 hours a week. If you are sick, please don’t come spread it around the clinic. If your friend is getting married on the weekend, go have fun. You will find we are very relaxed. Just please communicate with someone, usually the intern in your house. Especially if you are sick or having an issue, we want to know what is going on so we can make sure you are okay.

  • Should I bring a computer?
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    Both the clinic and the houses have excellent wireless internet. Bring whatever you need. We have a library with books and computer access at the clinic.

  • Is there a way to contact past externs/interns?
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    You can call the clinic and ask to speak to a current extern at 817-783-2257. Most interns are past externs so they can help answer any questions you may have. Many schools have some means of evaluating the externship after completion. That is done through your schools and requires the students to fill it out. Maybe we can set something up on our website, but it will probably appear self-serving.

  • Is there anything I should not do?
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    Occasionally, we get externs that group together and move as a unit. Although our clients are used to seeing students, we are not a teaching hospital. It can be overwhelming to a client to have a doctor walk out to the barn with an intern and 2-3 externs. Divide and conquer. Also, we rarely see issues of one-upmanship. Although the reality is you may be competing against another extern for an internship spot, it is never helpful to have an antagonistic relationship with anyone here. Occasionally, students are so eager to prove themselves that they become aggressive. Also, please don’t overstep your grounds and try to take over a case. Often, owners will ask the student what they think while the clinicians leaves the client for a moment. Be friendly, helpful, and courteous; don’t question the advice of the doctor or offer your own treatment advice. Talk to the doctor later for clarity on what was done or not done. Questioning the doctor in front of a client can set up distrust for our clients. Finally, respect of client patient confidentiality should be maintained.

  • How do I get graded on my externship?
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    Usually we will be contacted by your school administrator. To me, grades are not very important at this point. Expect to get good marks from us. If you want an exit interview, or advice along the way, just ask. Occasionally, I will need encouragement by you to get the grades done. A few helpful reminder emails is never a problem.

  • What if I want to apply for the internship and I did not get an externship?
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    You can schedule a visit, even if you are only here for a few days. We have had students drop by for one day only, which is fine. We will try to secure housing for you, although priority is given to scheduled externs. However, if you want to be here we want to meet you. We have even had students stay a night at a doctor’s house when housing is full.

  • What if I am an international student?
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    We have had students come from all over the world. Our past interns include a Canadian and an Australian. Students from accredited university are given a priority, since they are able to be involved in our internship program. We are unable to sponsor visas for externships. Please contact us and we will try to set up an externship.

  • What if I am not a 3rd or 4th year?
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    Due to housing constraints we limit most externships to 3rd or 4th year students only. If you want to come by and spend a day or two, or you have family in the area, we always love meeting veterinary students from any year.

  • What is your average case load?
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    Extremely Busy! We are probably 60% small animal, 20% equine, and 20% food animal. We average approximately 100-120 cases a day.

  • My externship starts in a few weeks. Do I need to do anything?
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    We would like an email 2-3 weeks before your scheduled arrival to make sure all the logistics and details are hammered out. Also, some people schedule externship up to 2 years in advance, so let’s talk once more before you head to Texas.

  • My schedule has changed and I need to cancel. What do I need to do?
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    Please send us an email as soon as possible. We would love to have cancellations at a minimum, since we are often turning away potential externs when we are full. However, we understand things change and there are no hard feelings. When we are expecting someone who does not show, it is concerning. We want to insure your safety on the road and know who should be arriving each weekend. If your dates change, you need to cancel, or you are going to be late, please keep us in the loop.

Summertime is here!

Summertime is here! Due to increased case load we are not able to accept new small animal clients until August 6th.

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