Comparative Ophthalmology Internship

Comparative Ophthalmology Internship

**The following is a general description of the current internship program and is accurate at the time of writing. However, please check back regularly as it is updated as information changes regarding specific programs each year.**

Internship in Comparative Ophthalmology

A. Program Description

This is a 1-year program designed to provide an introduction to the diverse aspects of comparative ophthalmology in an academic setting thereby broadening the intern’s appreciation of opportunities in clinical ophthalmology and vision science research, while enhancing their curriculum vitae in preparation for future applications to comparative ophthalmology residency training programs. The intern’s primary role will be assisting with the medical and surgical management of large and small domestic animals, laboratory animals, and captive and wild exotic animals, always under the supervision of a more senior clinician. The intern will share responsibility for hospital inpatients and outpatients, and assist in instruction of professional veterinary medical students. When clinical commitments permit it, the intern will be exposed to diverse aspects of hypothesis-driven research (including grant development, study design and performance, data analysis, and manuscript preparation), be eligible to attend relevant lectures and rounds at the School of Veterinary Medicine, Centre for Vision Science, Department of Ophthalmology in the University of California-Davis Medical Center, and to observe ophthalmic screening of mice for the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium.

SPECIAL NOTE: As of mid-2017, the California Veterinary Medical Board will require all veterinarians working at the University of California, Davis with primary patient care duties to hold a special University license. To obtain this University license, veterinarians that are not licensed in the state of California will be required to take a 3-day course on regionally-important diseases and a short open-book jurisprudence test, in addition to being background checked. The course will be given on-site at the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine early in the course of your training program (dates to be determined). The cost of licensure will be the responsibility of the trainee (currently $290). This limited license only permits individuals to work in California as veterinarians for University-related practice. Although veterinarians that do not have hands-on patient care duty (e.g., anatomic pathologists, clinical pathologists) are not required to hold this license, obtaining the license is encouraged whenever your activities may have an impact on animal-owning members of the public. If in doubt, please contact the Office of the CVMO for clarification.

B. Goals of the Internship Program

  1. Mentored training in basic clinical skills essential for successful management of veterinary patients with ophthalmic disease.
  2. Directed self learning regarding the eye and its diseases.
  3. Mentored training in effective clinical teaching skills.
  4. Exposure to research methods in vision science including study design and execution, as well as grant and manuscript preparation.
  5. Enhanced experience to augment future applications to ABVO-approved residency training programs.

C. Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Regular participation in clinical activities of the Ophthalmology Service including evening and weekend emergency duty. House officers must be able to arrive at the hospital within 15 minutes of an emergency call.

o    Medical Ophthalmology – The ophthalmology intern will be under direct supervision of a faculty member or resident throughout the vast majority of the program and non-direct supervision at all times.

    • Surgical Training – As clinical duties permit, the intern may be eligible to audit the medical and veterinary ophthalmology resident microsurgical training program. The intern will also receive instruction in some extraocular procedures such as eyelid tumor removal and enucleation.
    • Ophthalmic Pathology – As clinical duties permit, the intern will be eligible to audit ophthalmic pathology rounds led by an ocular pathologist for our ophthalmology residents.
    • The UCD Mouse Biology Program - As clinical duties permit, the intern may be asked to observe or assist in providing ophthalmic support to the mouse biology program.
    • Research - During his or her internship, the intern is expected to prepare and submit a first-author manuscript for publication in an archival peer-reviewed journal. The manuscript may describe an individual case, case series, or a retrospective analysis of a specific hypothesis-driven question in an area related to ophthalmology or vision science. Presentation of research data at the UCD VMTH House Officer Seminar Day and/or an ACVO conference is encouraged. Co-authorship as a result of intellectual contributions to the multitude of active projects within our section may also be possible. The intern will receive devoted time, access to our research infrastructure, and faculty mentorship appropriate to achieve these goals.
    • Didactic Training – As clinical duties permit, the intern is eligible to audit seminars, conferences, rounds, journal clubs, and other review sessions conducted as part of our residency training program, including those held in association with the UCD Medical School.
    • External Courses - Attendance at the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists’ conference may be possible dependent upon the clinical needs of the Service. Attendance at the Magrane Basic Science Course will not be permitted. University funds may be available to subsidize continuing education expenses, but the cost of attendance is ultimately the intern’s responsibility.
    • Teaching - Considerable responsibility for teaching students in clinics and participation in teaching laboratories for UCD veterinary student courses is required. This includes regular (mentored) demonstration of the ophthalmic examination to 4th-year DVM students on the clinical rotation. The intern may also be able to provide some lectures for UCD veterinary student clubs.
    • Medical Records - All patient records must be completed in an exemplary and timely fashion.
  1. The VMTH is committed to building strong relationships with its constituents and maintaining excellent communications within its walls. Therefore, timely and complete communication with referring veterinarians and clients forms a major part of the intern’s duties. Intern’s must also establish and maintain cordial relationships with all members of the VMTH community: students, residents, faculty, staff, referring veterinarians, and clients.
  2. Continuation in the training program is contingent upon a satisfactory 6-month performance review.
  3. Failure to meet all aspects of the duties and responsibilities will result in termination or withholding of the certificate of internship completion.

D. Requirements

  1. Graduation from a School of Veterinary Medicine.
  2. A minimum of 12 months full-time clinical practice as a veterinarian between graduation as a veterinarian and beginning the internship training program.
  3. Demonstration of high motivation and excellent interpersonal skills.
  4. Satisfactory ethical standing.

E. Application procedure

  1. The application procedures will vary somewhat each year and you must check back here regularly to verify requirements for any given cycle. So that you may begin thinking about and planning your packet, typically, the following items have been required:
    1. A UCD-VMTH residency application form.
    2. A personal statement highlighting career goals, personal background, and reasons for applying for this residency.
    3. A curriculum vitae
    4. Three to five letters of recommendation from faculty members or veterinary/medical practitioners. These letters should address (among other things) aptitude and performance in intellectual and creative pursuits pertinent to scientific research, knowledge of veterinary medicine, clinical skills, ability to apply knowledge in a clinical situation, and ability to communicate and work with others in a team.
    5. Veterinary school transcripts- including grade point average and class rank. An official English translation of these must be included if they are not in English.
  2. All materials including transcripts must be submitted electronically.
  3. The Veterinary Internship-Residency Matching Program (VIRMP) will likely NOT be used.

F. Interviews/Visits:

While we permit short (1-2 day) clinic visits at no charge for intern/resident candidates throughout most of the year, such visits are not possible between the ACVO meeting and the date Internship offers are made (typically late October through mid-January).

Formal interviews will not be offered for this position.

G. Timeline

To be determined each year; however, typically we accept applications from soon after the ACVO meeting through ~mid-December and make an offer between mid-January and mid-February.  Please check back here regularly for actual dates for the coming cycle.

The University of California Davis Veterinary Ophthalmology Service typically offers on an annual basis a 4-year,ophthalmology residency position in addition to the internship program. More information is available here.

The University of California, Davis, and the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital are interested in candidates who are committed to the highest standards of scholarship and professional activities, and to the development of a campus climate that supports equality and diversity.