Graduation Year: 2012
After graduating from the University of Guelph with a BSc in Zoology in 2009, Heidi Hodgson wasn’t sure where to take her career. Becoming a veterinary technician had crossed her mind more than once and Sheridan’s new program was very appealing.
With its work placement component, the program gave Heidi the hands-on experience she was looking for at a location closer to her family in Toronto.
Today, Heidi is applying her skills and passion for animal medicine to her work as a veterinary technician at the Royal York Animal Hospital in Etobicoke.
“Seeing an animal come in very ill and leave in a happy, healthy state is very rewarding, especially when the pet has dealt with a long term chronic condition that was solved with your help,” says Heidi, who also enjoys working with pet owners who have puppies or kittens. In these cases, she can make recommendations for the young pets’ health and watch them grow up.
On a more personal level, Heidi appreciates the self-growth she gains from her work.
“There is a never-ending amount of information to learn in the veterinary field. Expanding my knowledge helps me improve my nursing and other technical skills,” says Heidi.
Although she enjoys her job, Heidi says it does come with its fair share of challenges which her teachers at Sheridan prepared her for.
“It can be extremely frustrating at times,” says Heidi, “especially as a new grad without a fully developed understanding of how to deal with a very scared and sick dog or cat. But, like my teachers always said, you can't give in to frustration and fear. It takes a long time to fully develop your skills in this field, and as you do, the rewards of your job become greater.”
Finding the right environment to hone these abilities is important for new graduates, as well, says Heidi.
“Veterinary technicians are in high demand and you should take the time to find the right fit rather than settle for any job,” she says. “I made it a priority to work for a clinic that was medically advanced, used proper diagnostic tools, paid competitively and used their techs to the fullest, putting everything we learned in school to use,” adds Heidi, calling veterinary technicians invaluable members of the animal care team.
A native of London, Ontario, Heidi now lives in Etobicoke where she cares for her own two cats and a betta fish.