BLOG: Carl May RVN - Celebrating Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month
We last caught up with Carl May RVN in January 2022 and to help celebrate his achievements as a part of Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month, we caught up with him recently to find out how life as a Registered Veterinary Nurse and JVP is going.
Veterinary Nursing Awareness Month (VNAM) is celebrated each May. Its aim is to spread the word to the veterinary profession and to pet owners about the importance of the veterinary nurse's role. VNAM was started by the British Veterinary Nursing Association in 2005 and was a national day-long campaign, but since 2012, has grown to be celebrated for the entire month of May. The theme for 2023, is Empowerment.
And what better way to honour empowerment within veterinary nursing than to celebrate those who have become successful business owners through Joint Venture Partnership with Vets for Pets?
For Carl May RVN, becoming a veterinary nurse was something he knew was his calling having spent two weeks under the supportive wing of a vet during his work experience in a veterinary practice when he was 14. However, when he first qualified as RVN in 1996, practice ownership was not considered a possible career option “partners were largely vets and it was expensive to buy into a practice”. However, that all changed for Carl when he learned of Joint Venture Partnership with Vets for Pets. Read Carl’s journey to JVP here.
In 2016, Carl signed as JVP at Vets for Pets Alsager, which at the time was a brand new practice that he and the team have since grown to become a successful business. Since we last caught up, the biggest highlight for Carl would be that he has become the sole JVP at the practice, he says “the practice continues to go from strength to strength, we have cleared off the practice debt and this year I’ll be looking at paying off my business loan” which will provide him, his partner and their four-year old daughter financial security for their future.
That’s not Carl’s only achievement. In March this year, he spoke at BSAVA where he discussed neurodiversity in the veterinary industry. Having been diagnosed with ADHD himself, Carl is keen to raise awareness of how the profession can support the neurodiverse in their careers. Every Friday, a young lady with autism visits the practice and assists with various tasks around the practice, providing her with skills and a career opportunity which might not otherwise have been practicable.
In 2018, the practice was the first veterinary practice to receive Autism Friendly status, an award which has been renewed in 2023. This means that the practice recognises and accommodates clients who have neurodiversity and might prefer to avoid visiting places where they could become overstimulated and overwhelmed by bright lights, smells, or noise “We provide a quiet space for our neurodiverse clients. By providing this reassurance and inclusivity, they are more likely to seek treatment for their pet sooner. We can put measures into place to make their life easier and as a result, maintain the best care for their pet”.
You can find out more about achieving Autism Friendly status for your practice by visiting the National Autistic Society and signing up for the course “It’s as easy as that! I hope more veterinary practices are able to become Autism Friendly”.
Carl on veterinary nursing
Carl says it was during his own work experience at a veterinary practice that he discovered his love of veterinary nursing and knew straight away that it was a career path he wished to follow. “I love everything about it” he states, “I, of course, enjoy being with the animals that bring me a sense of calm, but also seeing them go from puppy or kitten to adult and getting to know their owners and going on their pet care journey with them” he also enjoys consulting, theatre, and radiography – “I love the variety the job brings.”
Carl on Joint Venture Partnership
Having never originally thought practice ownership would be a part of his future, Carl thoroughly enjoys being a JVP and running and owning his own business “I am able to do what I need to do, and I have a great team behind me. We built our ethos together which in turn has created a successful business.”
He speaks highly of the support he receives from his Area Relationship Manager (ARM). Although he finds he is now at the point in his business journey where he doesn’t call on the support functions offered by Vets for Pets as often as he had in the early stages of partnership, he knows they are there when he needs them “I have built great relationships with colleagues in support office and know I can call them when I need guidance, I know who I need to go to, to get the assistance I need.”
If you’d like to find out more about what your journey to Joint Venture Partnership could look like, or if you’d like to speak to a member of the team about practice ownership opportunities, contact the Partnership Team.