The Georgia Aquarium provides veterinary students the unique opportunity to gain experience in the field of aquatic animal medicine at one of the largest aquariums in the world. The hospital is located within the Correll Center for Aquatic Animal Health which is supported by four clinical veterinarians and a veterinary resident, four veterinary technicians, a veterinary technician assistant and an animal health coordinator (also a tech). The Georgia Aquarium has a state-of-the-art veterinary hospital with equipment comparable to that found at a teaching hospital or specialty practice. Through a partnership with the University of Georgia, College of Veterinary Medicine, we have an established aquatic veterinary pathology program as well as a growing clinical partnership with the zoological medicine service. The aquarium also employs a full commissary staff managed by an inhouse nutritionist, and an extensive water quality team.
Externships are a minimum of 4 weeks and a maximum of 6 weeks in duration. Preference will be given to 3rd and 4th year students, but all veterinary students may apply. Externs must be currently enrolled in a veterinary degree program during their scheduled externship. International applications are welcome; however, any visa requirements are the sole responsibility of the applicant. Work hours are typically Monday to Friday 7:30 – 4:30 but may vary depending on the medical needs of the collection. Students should be flexible if asked to work on the weekend. A current tetanus vaccination and health insurance are required.
A list of affordable and safe housing options will be provided to externs; however, the student is required to secure and finance their own housing. Students should provide their own transportation to and from the aquarium; parking at the aquarium is provided. There is limited public transportation in Atlanta.
In addition to seeing clinical cases with the veterinary staff on a daily basis, students will spend time working in the commissary, water quality laboratory, and quarantine departments. They will also assist in performing necropsies, complete medical records and observe in the diagnostic laboratory. Individuals are expected to complete a research or special project and give a 45min PowerPoint presentation during the last week of the externship. We will provide both required and recommended reading lists intended to broaden the student’s knowledge base in aquatic animal husbandry and clinical care.