The first and only UK cohort of Registered Veterinary Nurses (RVNs) studying the Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Advanced Equine Veterinary Nursing (Critical Care, and Diagnostic Imaging and Rehabilitation streams) have graduated from Hartpury University, during a glittering graduation ceremony at Gloucester Cathedral on Thursday 2 November 2023.
All of Hartpury’s inaugural graduates from the Postgraduate Certificate also gain the RCVS Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Nursing.
In 2022, Hartpury became one of only five universities to offer the PGCert Advanced Equine Veterinary Nursing and the only university to opt to offer an equine pathway. The non-equine (Advanced Veterinary Nursing) pathways include Clinical Nursing and Client Support, and Perioperative Nursing and Patient Safety.
The course is designed to help veterinary nurses better map out their individual pathways for career progression, maximise their roles in practice and utilise their professional skills more effectively. It allows veterinary nurses to combine working in practice with studying for an advanced qualification with flexible and online learning. The course can be completed in one year or spread out over two/three years, or modules can be taken individually as CPD.
The programme is led by Carol Gray, Principal Lecturer in Veterinary Nursing at Hartpury University and Programme Manager. She said: “I’m immensely proud of all our first Advanced Veterinary Nurses and it’s a great privilege to celebrate the graduation of the UK’s only UK Advanced Equine Veterinary Nurses, who completed a demanding course while holding pivotal roles in equine veterinary practices, and managing other commitments. We couldn't have asked for a better first cohort of students, and we wish them continuing success in their professional careers.”
This cohort of graduates will use their advanced knowledge and skills within their existing and future roles within a number of prestigious equine hospitals located around the country.
Jessica Saunders, a graduate from the Postgraduate Certificate in Advanced Equine Veterinary Nursing (Critical Care) said: “My commitment to delivering top-tier patient care led me to Hartpury. After 17 years at Oakham Veterinary Hospital, I’ve discovered my passion for critical care nursing, especially in isolation and post-operative colic cases.
“I particularly enjoyed the live lectures with highly-experienced specialists and being able to discuss and relate lecture material to clinical practice - this was extremely valuable.”
A golden year for Hartpury University
It’s been a busy time for the Veterinary Nursing department with a number of research projects gaining attention from industry media. Recent research and pilot studies have concluded:
- Practice waiting rooms could be the cause of fear-related behaviours in dogs.
- Wellbeing support is essential for career longevity in Student Veterinary Nurses (SVNs).
- Better education and homecare could help dog owners to improve the oral health of their pets.
The key research focuses for the Veterinary Nursing department are to inform veterinary nursing education and to advance veterinary practice.
More broadly, it’s been a successful year for Hartpury as it celebrated five years since being awarded the official university title. In September, the institution was awarded triple Gold in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) as well as performing strongly in the National Student Survey, Daily Mail University Guide, and The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide.