The Higher Education Act (HEA) is a comprehensive package of legislation that governs higher education policy, including federal student loans. It’s important legislation because it greatly impacts the veterinary profession. With the Congressional clock winding down and without a Senate bill to negotiate and pass, the HEA debate will start again in the next Congress, which begins in January 2019. Here’s what you need to know about the HEA. In December 2017, the House of Representatives took action to advance their version of a HEA re-write. The House bill, known as...

Study: Members Want More Learning Opportunities A new report from the software provider Community Brands suggests that most association members are joining because of education and career opportunities, rather than out of a sense of professional responsibility. Read More From Associations Now Online 9/4/18 Is It Time for a New Learning Format? By Samantha Whitehorne While panel presentations, lectures, and small-group discussions are staples at conferences, associations that switch things up and introduce new formats can better engage attendees and appeal to different learning styles. Read More From The Money & Business Topic Blog – Associations Now Online...

Do you have responsibility for human resources (HR) as part of your job portfolio? Seeking to sharpen your skills in the HR arena? Curious about how solid HR principles play out in veterinary practice? If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you might want to check out the new expert trainer certificate program being offered through the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VHMA) in collaboration with Animal Care Technologies (ACT). This veterinary specific course teaches the most effective training methods, practical techniques, and how to apply adult...

I was honored to represent VMAE at the recently held Critical Issues Summit convened by the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VHMA) to probe the topic of value-based pricing. John Volk of Brakke Consulting described it in the August 10, 2018 edition of Brakke’s Animal Health News & Notes: “The goal was to take a deep dive into pricing theory and to develop more effective ways for veterinarians to price their services in order to serve a broader audience yet increase revenues … Hats off to [VMAE member] Christine Shupe and...

In 51 seconds, you can watch this video describing the newly launched AVMA website My Veterinary Life. Designed for current students, new veterinarians, and rising professionals, the site provides resources on career planning (e.g. student externship locator), financial health (e.g. veterinary salary estimator), and career planning (e.g. wellbeing assessment). VMA executives might consider updating their websites to include a link to this curated resourced under appropriate sections of the VMA websites. In a nod of recognition, the website was covered by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) in its...

VMAE, as one the three co-lead organizations, was referenced in an August 15, 2018 JAVMA news article (available online here) that describes how the initiative has established a new framework and goals. Previously referred to as Fix the Debt, the VDI has established three areas of focus: the individual, the veterinary profession, and society to focus its efforts and communications while recognizing the breadth and complexity of the issue. Ralph Johnson, CEO | VMAE...

The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) has created an annual award to inspire and recognize professional excellence and achievement in fundraising for student scholarships among member institutions. The AAVMC Award for Fundraising Excellence in Student Scholarships will consist of a $1,000 honorarium and a commemorative. "Creating this award is part of our strategic interest in helping advance the Veterinary Debt Initiative," said AAVMC CEO Dr. Andrew T. Maccabe, noting that the award is exclusively focused on scholarship resource development and is not intended to recognize comprehensive program excellence...

Dr. Michael Blackwell, who delivered a presentation on access to veterinary care at the VMAE | Summer Conference 2018 in Denver, has announced that The University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s College of Social Work Program for Pet Health Equity has received a $2.8 million grant from Maddie’s Fund to support research and development of AlignCare, a health care system designed to improve access to veterinary care for underserved families. AlignCare grew out of concern for the millions of pets in the United States that lack access to veterinary care, primarily because of...

A new AVMA guide is available for free download and offers “practical steps that veterinarians can take to support healthful living and create a positive work environment” according to an August 15, 2018 JAVMA News article. The guide was developed for the veterinary wellbeing summit held earlier this year and reflects the commitment by a coalition of organizations (including VMAE) and individuals to improving wellbeing throughout the veterinary community. Read more here. Ralph Johnson, CEO | VMAE...

In a previous edition of Peer to Peer News I noted that AVMA is offering Lead & Learn webinars. To clarify, these live webinars are open to all veterinary professionals at no charge; the only caveat is that access to the library of webinar recordings requires AVMA membership. Each course offers one hour of CE credit. Upcoming topics in the Lead & Learn webinar series include: Aug. 23 (6 pm CDT)—"What Veterinarians Need to Know About Cannabis" Sept. 11 (noon CDT)—"Practice Model Efficiency for Wellbeing and Profit" Sept. 25 (noon...