Ep 56: Dr Mandisa Greene - Inspiring Inclusivity and Diversity For All

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On today’s show, I’m joined by Dr Mandisa Greene, the first black president of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, here in the UK. Raised in Trinidad, Mandisa grew up surrounded by animals and aspired to become a vet from an early age. However, her path into veterinary medicine wasn’t easy. Mandisa faced rejections from all her university applications on her first attempt. But luckily for us, she didn’t let rejection get in her way and, after first completing a degree in Biological and Medicinal Chemistry, Mandisa was accepted to study veterinary medicine at Edinburgh’s Royal Dick School of Veterinary Studies graduating in 2008. Following four years in general practice, Mandisa then worked in a dedicated emergency clinic covering Birmingham before transitioning to relief vet work to enable her to have a better work/life balance as she raised her family. Mandisa is a published author, and along with being passionate about her own development, is also a strong advocate for veterinary nurses achieving and being used to their full potential. To this end she has lectured at Harper Adams University educating both student and qualified veterinary nurses. In 2020 Mandisa was historically appointed as the first black president of Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and having completed her year of office is now serving as senior vice president. Now, just before we jump into the episode, a quick word from today’s show sponsor which today is the Thrive community. If you are struggling with managing time, feeling like an imposter or burnout then you need to make a change. The good news is that you are not broken or a bad fit for the profession, you are simply missing some super-important skills no-one teaches at university. Skills you will learn as part of the VetX community. Thrive is a RACE accredited professional skills course where members receive training, toolkits and one-to-one coaching to develop these skills. Join hundreds of other vets who have changed their careers for the better as a Thrive member. To learn more and find out if the class is a good fit for you visit vetxinternational.com today. While this episode was fun to record it was also at times difficult to hear and imagine the obstacles that I, as a white guy, did not face. Mandisa, as you are about to learn, is not someone who allows setbacks or ignorance get in the way of her goals. Whether rejection and racism or mixing up both career and family, Mandisa has found a way to overcome the odds and make it work. She’s a role model shining a bright light on a pathway that remains hidden to many - one that leads to the very top of this profession. Mandisa is many other things: vet, teacher, leader, mother and an outstanding example of how dreams can come true. But her story is also a reminder of how much more work there remains to do to attract talent from all walks of life. And make sure our systems are set up so that anyone with the skills and desire to do so has a fair chance of calling veterinary medicine home. Listen in to learn, laugh and be inspired by the trailblazing Dr Mandisa Greene.

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