Emergency Medicine Mentorship Program

Upstate Veterinary Specialties (UVS) – Emergency Medicine Mentorship Program (EMMP)

Quick Look:

  • Who?: Recent Doctor of Veterinary Medicine graduates who are passionate about emergency medicine but not interested in pursuing a traditional rotating internship. Practicing veterinarians who are seeking a career change but are hesitant to jump directly into an emergency position.
  • What?: A 12-month mentorship experience curated by highly skilled veterinary specialists and experienced emergency medicine clinicians.
  • Where?: Upstate Veterinary Specialties, a privately-owned, multispecialty veterinary emergency and specialty referral hospital located at 152 Sparrowbush Road, Latham, NY 12110.
  • When?: Enrolling new classes every July. Timeline details and application are at the bottom of this page.
  • Why?:  To uphold the Veterinarian’s Oath to “… protect animal health/welfare and prevent/relieve animal suffering…” by training the next generation of veterinary emergency clinicians.
  • How?:  Providing a full complement of educational experiences and training opportunities, daily doctors rounds, didactic teaching (boot camp lecture series), journal club, one-on-one mentoring, NYS-approved CE lectures, hands-on experiences, compassionate coaching, and guided learning.


About EMMP:

Participants will begin their UVS-EMMP journey with a comprehensive orientation and onboarding experience and a brief rotation through the following specialty services – cardiology, critical care, dermatology, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, and surgery.

Our rotations will cover the following:

  • Introduction to our hospital policies and procedures.
  • Experience with our electronic medical record systems (Instinct, Vetconnect, Asteris).
  • Opportunity to develop and practice critical skills to aid emergency positions and future careers.
  • Foster collegial relationships that are the “secret sauce” to our collaborative work environment and positive workplace culture.
  • Participation in our “boot camp” lecture series designed to provide the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in any emergency setting. These lectures will be NYS-approved and help fulfill CE requirements for maintaining medical licenses.

Throughout the program, participants will be paired with one of several mentors from our emergency and critical care departments, leading to a very favorable mentee-mentor ratio of 1:3! Following the 4-week orientation period, participants will take a position alongside their mentors in our busy emergency department. From day one, participants will be treated like colleagues, not interns.

Participants will work four (4) 12-hour shifts per week, 12-14 shifts per month – mirroring the shifts of your mentors. We believe in avoiding burnout and compassion fatigue! Therefore, we will make every effort to make these 4 shifts consecutive, allowing you to have 3 days off in a row, thereby maintaining that critically important work-life harmony.

Participants will start with limited receiving on the day (4a-4p or 6a-6p) and swing (12p-12a) shifts. Participants will not be assigned to an overnight shift (5p-6a) until the second half of their mentorship. You will always be paired with an experienced clinician. In a conscious effort to provide a complete ER experience, participants will be asked to work some weekends and holidays.

In addition to emergency receiving, participants will also have the opportunity to scrub into emergency surgical procedures, learn to do endoscopic foreign body retrievals, practice their FAST ultrasound skills, become RECOVER CPR certified, and potentially provide spay-neuter services for a local veterinary shelter. We have also curated a skills list modeled after a similar ACVECC list. Some of these skills will be required learning, while others will be elective experiences. View our EMMP Skills List.

As participants proceed through our program, they will be assigned more complicated cases and provided more freedom to practice independently. An experienced clinician will always be available to discuss diagnostic options, treatment plans, and challenging client communications.

A general outline of the program is as follows:

  • Months 1-3: Orientation, shadowing with the specialty services, Boot Camp lectures series, co-managing inpatient and outpatient patients with a curated case load appropriate to your current skills, experience, and comfort levels.
  • Months 4-6: Co-managing a higher caseload with more complex cases and less oversight.
  • Months 6-12: Primary case responsibility but always with in-hospital mentor backup.

Participants will have formal “check-ins” with the EMM program director every three (3) months to ensure they progress as anticipated. Participants are encouraged to initiate more frequent, informal check-ins with their mentor(s) and/or the program director at any point during the program.

At the conclusion of the UVS-EMM program, participants are free to decide what comes next. That is, we require no time commitment beyond the 12-month program. While participants will be given priority access to open positions within our emergency department, they are not required to “stay on” or “payback” any time. The UVS-EMM program does not have a restrictive covenant or a “non-compete” clause.

Our goals are simple: train the next generation of veterinary emergency clinicians and provide exceptional, comprehensive veterinary care for our patients in NY’s Capital Region and beyond. In the immortal words of our founder Dr. Joel Edwards: “Do good medicine, and the rest will follow.”


Benefits of EMMP:

Beyond the benefits listed above, UVS-EMMP mentees will be provided with the following:

  • A competitive annual salary of $70,000 per year
  • Three different health insurance plans with varying degrees of employer premium contribution
  • Fully covered dental insurance
  • Vision coverage at a minimal monthly premium
  • Long-term disability coverage from day 1
  • Professional Liability Insurance coverage is provided (AVMA-PLIT)
  • Dues/fees for the following professional associations/licenses:
    • VECCS
    • AVMA
    • New York State Veterinary Medical Society (NYSVMS)
    • Capital District Veterinary Medical Society (CDVMS)
    • New York State Veterinary License
    • DEA license
    • Veterinary Information Network (VIN) membership
  • Paid Time Off (PTO):
    • 2 weeks (8 days) per year
  • 401k Retirement Plan:
    • After six months, UVS will match your personal contributions to the plan at 100% for the first 3% of your compensation and 50% for the next 2%.
  • Pet Insurance:
    • UVS reimburses up to $140/mo. towards pet insurance premiums for your personal pets!


Timeline and Application:

  • We accept online applications for the next calendar year’s mentorship through November 15.
  • A select number of applications will be asked to interview in person between November 15 and December 31.
  • Offers will be made by mid-February.
  • Successful candidates will need to apply for their New York State veterinary DEA licenses immediately, as there is an 8-week lead time.
  • The program begins annually on or around July 1.
  • Applicants must pass the NAVLE and be licensed in NY state before starting on July 1.

Apply online today! Our application will ask for the following:

  • A current CV/resume
  • A letter of intent
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Three professional references

We highly value and respect our support staff members, so please be sure that one of your references is from a veterinary technician, assistant, or client service representative.