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Supporting and Empowering Women in the Veterinary Profession

Available to watch on demand now!

Panellists: Katie Ford, Daniella Dos Santos, Natalie Scroggie, Dr Tshidi Gardiner & Marissa Robson

Facilitator: Kathryn Bell

About the webinar

Gender balance in the veterinary profession has changed significantly over the last 40 years globally. According to the RCVS, women now account for almost 60% of registered practicing veterinarians and almost 80% of students enrolling in veterinary medicine are women.

However, despite the number of women in the sector, females still encounter a gender pay gap and are underrepresented in certain key and senior roles within the profession, including Directors and Partners. Additionally, a BVA survey conducted in 2017 found that women experience more explicit gender discrimination and are recognised and appreciated less frequently than male colleagues.

The continuity of male-led practices, combined with the nature of work, does not allow for a sustainable shift towards more flexible working practices. In addition to this, levels of stress and burnout are generally higher among women than men in the veterinary profession.

The above facts suggest that relying on the female heavy pipeline will not be sufficient to address gender inequality, so what can we do to help?

Watch our amazing diverse panel of women to hear engaging discussions on...

  • Exploring the importance of allies, mentoring and career development strategies.
  • How to encourage more conversations, feel more connected and nurture stronger communities.
  • How to grow and champion ourselves as individuals in the industry and within our communities.

Get perspectives on these and other timely topics from pioneering women in the field.

Session Agenda - Now available to watch on demand

Speaker – Kathryn Bell

All Speakers: Katie Ford, Daniella Dos Santos, Natalie Scroggie, Dr Tshidi Gardiner and Marissa Robson

All Speakers: Katie Ford, Daniella Dos Santos, Natalie Scroggie, Dr Tshidi Gardiner and Marissa Robson

Prepared Questions

– Have you used allies and mentors to excel in your career?

– What career development strategies have you used and what tips would you give our audience?

– Self-promotion or acting as your own career champion can sometimes feel quite uncomfortable for some people, what tips can you give people to overcome this?

– Last question to each panellist: what is the best piece of career advice you have received?

All Speakers: Katie Ford, Daniella Dos Santos, Natalie Scroggie, Dr Tshidi Gardiner and Marissa Robson

All Speakers: Katie Ford, Daniella Dos Santos, Natalie Scroggie, Dr Tshidi Gardiner and Marissa Robson

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About the speakers

Kathryn Bell CEO

Kathryn is the CEO for Alpha Vet International Ltd, which includes The Webinar Vet, WikiVet and The Vet Exhibition.

She is responsible for leading the Senior Leadership Team and partnering with our executive board to set our strategy, evolve our propositions and continue to accelerate our global growth.

She has been with the company for nearly a decade, taking us from a team of 3 to 30 people and 1 brand to 5 through growth and acquisitions.
Kathryn is passionate about helping veterinary professionals around the world; providing the best education, the largest support community and the planet’s most confident veterinary professionals.

She is also incredibly passionate about people, diversity, and business transformation, with a focus on supporting and empowering women.

Katie Ford BVsC CERTAVP(SAM) PGCERT MRCVS

Katie graduated with distinction from the University of Liverpool in 2012. Since then she has continued to work in small animal first opinion practice, gaining her RCVS Certificate in Internal Medicine in 2017. Realising the power of preventative mindset strategies through her career and journey, she trained as a coach and now teaches other professionals how to use these techniques to thrive in the veterinary world. She regularly helps individuals and companies on topics such as gratitude, self-worth and dealing with “Imposter Syndrome”

Daniella Dos Santos BSc

Daniella graduated from the Royal Veterinary College in 2012, having previous obtained a degreed in Molecular Genetics from Kings College in London. Since graduating Daniella has worked in the south east in first opinion small animal and exotic pet practice, including within a busy 24hour veterinary hospital. She is the BVA Senior Vice President, having previously been chair of the Ethics and Welfare Advisory Panel, and is also an Animal Welfare Foundation Trustee.

Dr Tshidi Gardiner BSc BVSc Pg Cert Surg MRCVS PN1

My name is Tshidi. I am a Life Coach who specialises in Mindset Mentorship & Wellness Coaching for Veterinary & Medical Professionals. I have been qualified for over 18 years as a Veterinary Surgeon, I am still in first opinion practice and am also proud Mum of Two boys. I come with 18 years of clinical experience having qualified in 2003. I currently hold a Postgraduate Certificate in Small Animal Surgery, Life Coaching Diploma and Nutrition Coaching Certification. In 2018, I went on a mission to figure out how to really help people make changes. I studied personal growth, psychology, how the brain works to make changes, NLP and many other behaviour science techniques. I love helping people.

I have worn many hats throughout my career that have included: Clinical Director, Practice & Business owner, Clinical Coach, Examiner for Duchy College, Guest lecturer for Bicton College and Bristol University. I spend my spare time collaborating with and working on several working groups and subcommittees on Ethnic Diversity, Equality & Inclusion.

In July 2021, I start my 4 year term as RCVS Council member where I expect to represent you, my fellow Veterinary Colleagues, so please feel free to contact me.

Nat Scroggie

Nat is a small animal veterinary surgeon working in out-of-hours emergency care. She is also a keen amateur runner and has just completed her first marathon. Nat runs a blog called ‘This Vet Runs’ and is passionate about sharing the benefits of being active for both our physical and mental health, particularly within the veterinary profession.

Marissa Robson

I am a Thai / British dedicated farm vet graduating from Edinburgh University in 2008. As well as clinical farm practice, I have been a project manager, a lecturer and now I am finally a Veterinary Clinical Teaching Fellow at Surrey, which means I get to mentor the final years and the next generation of Surrey vets – a role I absolutely love!

After many years of trying to fit in and biting my tongue, I seem to have developed a policy of radical honesty and starting awkward conversations. I know one thing now; it does get easier the more you talk about difficult issues. As a profession we can either have uncomfortable conversations or live with the dysfunction. For those that can’t (or won’t) hear what you have to say, there are many more that can hear you. You will also discover how many people have been through similar experiences, across a multitude of diverse identities. They will be glad that you spoke up and you will not feel alone.