Demographic and preliminary employment data of the first two graduate cohorts from a rural veterinary school

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Objective: To report initial career experiences and graduate employment destinations 1 and 5 years following graduation of the 67 graduates from the first two graduating classes of the veterinary science program at Charles Sturt University. Design: Online survey of graduates from the 2010 and 2011 cohorts undertaken 12 months following course completion and descriptive data on graduate practice locations 5 years post-graduation. Procedure: Questions covered general demographic information, issues relating to work–life balance and factors influencing vocational choices. Descriptive statistics and qualitative responses are reported, with comparisons between continuous variables by two-sample t-test and between categories by Chi-square analyses. Significance was set at P < 0.05. Graduates' locations 5 years after graduation were obtained from veterinary registration details and staff contact with graduates. Results: Complete survey responses were received from 39 graduates of whom 34 were employed in regional areas, 1 in a very remote area, 3 in major cities and 1 overseas. Hours worked and salary received were consistent with other survey data, with new graduates working in regional practices earning slightly more than those working in metropolitan practices. At 5 years following graduation, the majority (56/61, 92%) remained in rural or regional Australian veterinary practices, with a further five graduates overseas and one lost to follow-up. Conclusion: This study supported the selection criteria and educational approaches at CSU in establishing most of the new graduates in rural and regional mixed veterinary practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-100
Number of pages10
JournalAustralian Veterinary Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 01 Apr 2017


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