AVC: Continual learning
By Brad White, DVM, MS; AVC President, Manhattan KS
The Academy of Veterinary Consultants (AVC) is a professional organization of veterinarians and veterinary students focused on providing excellent continuing education to the members. AVC started with a small group of feedlot consultants and has expanded to over 1,000 members from all facets of cattle health and production. One of the great things about this organization is the focus on continued learning and the ability to interact with colleagues.
AVC veterinarians come from all areas of beef health including purebred, cow-calf, stocker, feedlot, industry and academia. While the beef industry is segmented, AVC allows discussions by professionals throughout the beef production chain. Veterinary students are also an important part of AVC, and our organization offers several scholarships for veterinary students including support for externships.
In 2017, the AVC conducted a strategic planning session including information from a membership survey and input from members from various areas of the profession and career stages. Overall, AVC is doing very well and members are very happy with the organization and the strategic plan identified maintaining the focus on continuing education as the core mission. To enhance this mission the program committee began a process to include innovative ways to make the meetings more interactive.
The AVC appreciates the support of Bovine Veterinarian and the coverage they provide our organization. If you appreciate some the subject matter reported on by John Maday in this magazine, I encourage you to consider attending an AVC meeting and becoming a member of our organization. One of the best ways to evaluate the organization is to attend one of our conferences (see 2018 meeting dates below). If you are not a member, you can still attend your first conference as a guest and if you decide to join you can sign up at the conference. We believe AVC is one of the best values in beef continuing education as AVC membership is $175 per year and attendance at each of the three annual meetings is free of charge for members.
Highlights from 2017
Three conferences were held in 2017 providing approximately 45 hours of continuing educational credit for members. In spring 2017, several topic areas were addressed including focuses on cow-calf practice and appropriate use of antimicrobials. In the cow-calf section, two presentations were given related to bull management and breeding soundness examinations in addition to a presentation on cow-calf records keeping. On Saturday morning we discussed antimicrobial use metrics and two different meta-analyses on the efficacy of BRD treatments and metaphylaxis.
In Aug 2017, topics were presented on transportation, engaging the next generation of food animal veterinarians, and the state of the cattle industry. We also held a symposium related to pulmonary hypertension with several speakers providing perspectives on this emerging topic. For the December meeting a variety of topics were presented including: overviews of beef production in US and Mexico, pain management, efficacy of viral vaccines and diagnostic test interpretation.
AVC in 2018
Continuing education is a staple of AVC and we hold three conferences per year offering members continuing education (CE) credits through a variety of presentations. One of the focus areas for 2018 is increasing the ability for interaction and discussion to be sure members gain as much information as possible from these educational experiences. Information on conference details, how to register, and general information on AVC is available on our website: www.avc-beef.org. This year our conference schedule includes:
- AVC Spring Conference: April 12-14, Westin Dallas Fort Worth Airport Hotel, Irving TX
- AVC Summer Conference: August 9-11, Renaissance Denver Hotel, Denver, CO
- AVC Winter Conference: Nov 29-Dec1, Intercontinental Hotel, Kansas City, M
Each conference starts on Thursday with committee meetings and an educational dinner on Thursday night followed by a full day of programs on Friday and a half day of programs on Saturday. The conferences have several social events allowing members to network and discuss current topics with colleagues. The AVC posts full presentations on the website that can be viewed by members at no charge. These presentations can also be viewed for continuing education credit for a small fee. The presentations are available in audio version so practitioners can download them on their phone and listen as they are traveling.
We look forward to seeing you at an AVC meeting in 2018!