Our Cutting Edge vets are busy working mentored shifts in clinics across the UK. But in a few weeks’ time they will head back to the Vets Now support office for more theoretical and practical training and to reflect on what they have learned.

Ahead of their return, we spoke Simone Cutler, a vet from Stamford, England. Simone is currently gaining valuable ECC experience in our Caterham clinic, and hopes to continue on to a residency once completing the Cutting Edge programme.

If you think you have what it takes to work in ECC, and would like to follow in Simone’s footsteps, click here.

Name: Simone Cutler

Hometown: Stamford

Where did you go to university? School of Veterinary Medicine and Science in Nottingham.

Tell me a bit about your background?

I was born in Johannesburg and came to the UK when I was 10. I still have lots of family in South Africa and try to visit as often as I can. I went to school in Stamford, Lincolnshire, where I played many sports, including hockey, netball and badminton. I hope to find a hockey club near my clinic to continue playing.

When did you first decide to become a vet?

When I was in secondary school. I really enjoyed science and, after doing some work experience at a vets, I felt that it was the perfect career as it encompassed my passion for animals, people and medical science.

How did you end up at Vets Now?

I graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2015 and spent a year in Norfolk working in a small animal clinic. It was here I was exposed to out-of-hours work. I then undertook a small-animal rotating internship at a small-animal referral hospital in Derby. During this period I worked nights doing emergency work. This made me aware of the clinical and professional development opportunities that can be gained by doing out-of-hours work. Keen to develop my emergency experience further, I felt that Vets Now and the Cutting Edge Programme would be a perfect fit.

What’s the most enjoyable thing about being a vet?

The satisfaction of really making a difference to the lives of both animals and their owners, no matter how small. I also enjoy working as part of close-knit teams.

Why do you want to work in emergency and critical care?

Having already gained some emergency and critical care experience, I want to take this further within a dedicated out-of-hours environment. I am looking forward to acquiring new clinical skills and knowledge that will help me overcome the challenges associated with emergency work. I feel that exposure to emergency work will help me to become a more confident and decisive vet.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

If all goes to plan, I’ll have started a certificate in ECC or be undertaking a residency.

What are you hoping to get out of the Cutting Edge programme?

I’m hoping to refresh some of the principles of ECC that I learned in my previous position, gain some valuable practical experience and make lifelong friends within the group.

What would be your advice to someone who is thinking of becoming a vet?

It is certainly a challenging career at times, both personally and professionally, but very rewarding. It is a career where you get out what you put in. Do your research and visit as many different veterinary settings as you can. This is the only way to get a proper grasp of what the profession is really like.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I have lots of hobbies, including going to the gym, cycling, going to the cinema and reading. I really enjoy travelling and meeting up with friends as well as going on National Trust exploration days.

What is the most exciting thing you’ve ever done?

I once cycled 100km in Johannesburg for charity. It was difficult but enjoyable.

The next intake for Cutting Edge is in April, and places are filling up fast. We are also recruiting for more experienced vets for Refresh Your Edge, and our new fast-track programme AdvantEdge. If you, or any vets you know, are interested in applying, please call the Vets Now recruitment team for more information on 01383 841181 or click here.