Melbourne University Agricultural & Food Sciences Society (AFSS)
AFSS aims to provide a student body for undergraduate students in the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences at The University of Melbourne. It provides the opportunity to meet new students, hear from industry guest speakers and get involved in the society's organised events. Our purpose is to encourage student engagement, share experiences and make future connections.
Who can join: Students enrolled in the Bachelor of Agriculture, or Bachelor of Science, and majoring in agriculture or food science at the University of Melbourne.
How to join: Email melbuniag [at] gmail.com with your student number – membership is $10.
Graduate Agriculture & Food Society (GAFS)
GAFS represents the graduate coursework students of FVAS. They aim to foster social and academic interaction between students and staff and to assist in connecting students to industry.
Who can join: All graduate coursework students studying with FVAS.
How to join: Email unimelbgafs [at] gmail.com
Veterinary Students' Society of Victoria (VSSV)
VSSV represents the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students of FVAS. The society is run by a committee of third/fourth year students at Werribee and a sub-committee of second year students at Parkville. The club is responsible for organising numerous social and industry related events throughout the year. For first years, this process begins with a calendar of O Week activities and throughout the year the Vet Ball and Kendall Hall sports and other social events that allow you to interact with upper year levels to broaden your network.
VSSV members can also join one of the many special interest groups outlined below.
Who can join: All students enrolled in the DVM, and third year Bachelor of Science students taking the Veterinary Biosciences major.
How to join: All new DVM students will be emailed and invited to join the VSSV
VSSV Special Interest Groups
SWAG – Student Welfare Group
The Student Welfare Appreciation Group (SWAG) is the newest SIG and focuses on student welfare and mental wellbeing. The overall goal of SWAG is to promote and encourage the importance of mental health within the veterinary profession and also to provide resources on mental health issues and the services available.
The group has previously run yoga sessions, lunchtime seminars, movie nights, a pool competition and informative talks by students on what to expect in the next year of study. SWAG initiated and will continue to run a Mental Health Awareness Day, which included free yoga, massages, food and giveaways.
Join us for free access to talks and events and much more!
SVECCS – Student Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society
SVECCS is the University of Melbourne’s chapter of the US-based non-profit organisation, the National Student Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society. Our aims are to promote the education and involvement of veterinary students in the specialty of emergency and critical care medicine. We provide opportunities for students of all year levels to learn theoretical and practical skills that will be relevant to an emergency scenario – these include, but are not limited to, practicing suturing techniques, performing CPR, calculating fluid rates, animal restraint, etc.
SVECCS is also looking into organising a shadowing program for our 3rd year members to follow vets in the ECC department. SVECCS is independent from the VSSV and requires a small annual membership fee at the beginning of each academic year to help pay for material used in each of our sessions. For first year members however, membership is free! Also discounts apply for continuing members.
Though many of our sessions are for members only, SVECCS also organises ECC lectures for all veterinary students to attend, free of charge. Keep your eyes and ears open for the announcement when membership sign-ups start for your year level, spaces run out quick!
Wildlife Appreciation Group
The Wildlife Appreciation group is one of the VSSV’s special interest groups that focuses on the care, management, and conservation of wildlife. Our aim is to nurture students’ interest in wildlife, in addition to providing helpful insight to those interested in becoming general practitioners on how to approach and manage injured wildlife presenting to your clinic.
Some of the fun events you can look forward to in the upcoming year include our Wildlife Trivia night, Speakers night, guest lecturers, and our annual tour of the Healesville Sanctuary Wildlife Hospital.
We’re looking forward to meeting more wildlife enthusiasts, and having you join us to learn about all things wild! Please feel free to get in touch with your year levels WAG representative if you have any suggestions or ideas on how to support any wildlife charities and we will do our best to assist you!
Smallies (Small Animal Appreciation Group)
Smallies is one of the largest SIGs - and our interest is in dogs, cats and pocket pets. Our committee consists of Werribee students and Parkville students to ensure that all year levels are represented. We are a very active committee, organising many social and educational events throughout the year for students with an interest in small animal medicine and surgery. Some of the events organised in the past 12 months include:
- Annual Speakers Night – Usually held in May each year, special guest small animal veterinarians are invited to give enlightening and inspirational talks, with finger food and cocktails served between each speaker.
- Southpaws Tour – Specialist surgeon and oncologist Dr Charles Kuntz hosted an entertaining evening at his new practice in Moorabbin discussing interesting surgical cases.
- Advanced Vet Care Tour – Surgery & internal medicine specialists share insight on their chosen fields and the path they took to get there.
- Online Dentistry Course to reinforce the knowledge and skills of small animal dentistry.
- Lunchtime seminars at Werribee and Parkville campuses.
Each year we have Smallies merchandise for sale such as the Small Animal Veterinary Nerdbook by Dr Sophia Yin, Mini Vet Guide by Dr. Geraldo Poli, Nurses Pouches and Personal IV Clippers. VSSV Members are automatically members of the Smallies SIG. You will need to show your VSSV membership in order to receive the discounted event prices, and some events/merchandise will not be available too non-VSSV members
Two representatives will be elected from your year level, so if you are interested in working with small animals, we’d love to have you on our team!
HAG (Horse Appreciation Group)
HAG is a special interest group of the VSSV which aims to bring together students who have a passion for all things equine. Our aim is to expand the veterinary repertoire of students interested in equine medicine, surgery, dentistry, podiatry and horsemanship in general. In addition, we hope that it offers an opportunity for students, from all year levels, with an interest in horses to get to know one another.
The group is aimed towards everyone; we don't care if you don't own a horse or have hundreds and we don't care if you've ridden none or were born on the back of a horse! We want to ensure that you are confident in handling and being around horses as well as providing opportunities to gain further knowledge in equine medicine and care.
Some of the events we organise include lunch time seminars at Werribee with lecturers on cases and interesting topics which are generally conducted weekly. Weekly horse grooming which is aimed at giving the school horses that teach us so much some love, care and attention through grooming them; this also provides students with an opportunity to enhance or learn more about catching horses, rugging (during winter), grooming equipment and feed types. There is also Vet checking opportunities for students at Horse Trials (a great way to gain confidence around horses if you have little experience and also a fantastic opportunity to master the skill of taking heart rates, respiratory rates and evaluation lame/sound horses). Finally, the annual HAG Dinner is a fabulous opportunity to meet and chat to veterinarians about their experience and is also a great way to make connections for future placements.
We encourage all students with an interest in horses (or any other equid) or even those that don't have an interest but wish to become confident or just further your knowledge outside the classroom to join the VSSV and HAG. You can never know all there is to know about horses and horse people so you could be a cowgirl, a grand prix dressage rider or have no horse experience at all and we still welcome you to join. Whether you want to brush up on veterinary skills or simply learn some bizarre horse dialogue, HAG is a great way to do it. It is a forum for all vet students with an interest in horses to meet new people, learn and have fun in the process. We look forward to meeting you early in 2017.
BAG (Bovine Appreciation Group)
The Bovine Appreciation Group or BAG as it is affectionately known is for students who have an interest in cattle and rural practice. BAG organises a number of events each year – the main event is Cattle Dinner in Semester 2. This is a chance to hear more about life as a cattle vet and make connections in the industry over a 3 course meal with cattle veterinarians from across Victoria attending. Other events that are run throughout the year include lunch time talks, movie nights, and an end of exams B&S (Bloats n Staggers) party.
BAG has a Facebook group where members can discuss all things bovine. Make sure you join us for what will be a fantastic year!
MAG (Marine Appreciation Group)
Formed in 2014, MAG is the interest group for anyone interested in aquatic species. The group aims to cover both fresh and saltwater species, including fish, aquatic mammals, aquatic reptiles, and other aquatic animals. The mission of MAG is to develop the understanding of veterinary students in aquatic animal medicine, biology and to assist in networking for students interested in undertaking a placement or career in a related field.
So far, activities have included lunchtime lectures with guests from the Melbourne Zoo, Melbourne Aquarium and CSIRO, covering a range of topics such as seal and shark research and fish health.
A key activity for MAG is the running and maintenance of the reef aquarium tank currently being set up in Werribee hospital. Students will be responsible for the tank and its inhabitants, getting to learn more about reef systems whilst working alongside Dr Sam Long. MAG also looks after the freshwater tanks in Werribee’s Kendall Hall.
As we are a fairly new club we are always looking for more members that are enthusiastic about aquatic life or would just like to learn more about some interesting animals. We are also always open to hearing suggestions about what people would like to have as activities or talks.
VSAW (Veterinary Students for Animal Welfare)
Veterinary Students for Animal Welfare (VSAW) is a special interest group of the VSSV which aims to nurture an enthusiasm for the welfare of all animals. VSAW strives to inform and involve students in the science, ethics, law and practice of animal welfare and to assist them in developing their own ethical framework to take into their veterinary careers. We also work towards helping to improve the welfare of animals in our community and beyond.
Throughout the year, VSAW offers students the chance to participate in a number of activities including lunchtime lectures, documentary screenings, discussion groups, the opportunity to visit/volunteer at animal shelters and fundraising events for animal welfare organisations.
Feel free to join our Facebook group to keep up to date with the latest events and news!