Elevating Associate Voices from Coast to Coast
VCA Voice podcast showcases how we’re transforming veterinary medicine
Since August 2020, VCA Voice has shared a weekly series of inspiring stories from across the nation. After two years and 100 stories, we launched a new experience for listeners everywhere!
The VCA Voice podcast, offering connective conversations with VCA leaders and host Dr. Marie Kerl, debuted on Monday, August 15, 2022. The program focuses on how VCA is taking care of the future of veterinary medicine by elevating the voices of its Associates. Season one offers 12 episodes, exploring VCA’s clinical studies program, the importance of preventative care, careers in veterinary medicine, Associate experience, and more. Season 2, which launched on January 16, offers new episodes every other Monday morning.
In this Q&A, Dr. Kerl shares her goals, her guests, and the never-ending hunt for unforgettable stories.
What made you think about hosting a podcast?
When I stepped into the role of Chief Medical Officer in September 2020, I started getting to know all the medical leaders across VCA. I loved hearing the stories they shared about our people, the medicine we practice, and the clients we serve. Learning more about these leaders, and the diversity of their stories, seeded the idea of a podcast.
Whenever I meet VCA Associates, I continue hearing great stories about how people got into veterinary medicine and all the interesting things they’re doing in the profession. It’s so fun to learn how people got to where they are now. I got excited about sharing their stories.
Who should tune in?
Initially, we had talked about just sharing these stories within VCA. Given that it’s a network of hometown veterinary hospitals, it’s common that people in different areas of the country know their group well, but not others. I thought everyone would be interested to learn about their colleagues.
It’s inspiring to hear about the special training and commitment team members bring to each role in the organization. The interviews let us highlight team members who are serving their clients or colleagues in special ways and offer a more personal look at the programs they run.
Then, I realized how valuable some of these conversations might be to the wider veterinary field. There are stories, advice, and lessons that everyone can benefit from - even if you aren't immersed in medicine every day.
What I’ve learned is that all kinds of people are interested in the stories outside of our walls. It’s exciting that we can share a unique perspective that’s interesting for pet owners and for the broader veterinary community.
What are you most excited about sharing with pet owners?
With the VCA Voice podcast, we can share a much broader story about the profession. It’s so much bigger than getting exceptional care at a veterinary hospital.
When you look through the broader lens of public health and at all the ways that people, animals and the environment come together, veterinarians and technicians impact society in ways we don’t often think about. With the podcast, we can take a deep dive into programs, services, and experiences, and discuss them from multiple perspectives.
It’s exciting to raise awareness about those intersections that impact life for all of us.
What will veterinary professionals learn from the podcast?
I’ve loved being a veterinarian, and across my career, I’ve used my skills and knowledge in many ways. I want to help other veterinarians find their next career steps inside veterinary medicine by sharing stories from colleagues who’ve discovered and rediscovered rewarding professional opportunities.
I think many veterinary professionals hit a moment during their career when they think, “This isn’t the right fit for me.” I hope that by sharing other veterinary professionals’ paths we’ll inspire more people to find new opportunities and excitement at each stage of their career. Our team members are prepared to do so many things!
How are you selecting your guests?
I want to include people across the organization and across the country, of course. So many of our team members have interesting backgrounds and inspiring stories to share. We want to be sure we talk to team members at different stages of their careers and who work in veterinary hospitals of different sizes and in different types of communities. We want the guests to represent the diversity of our team members’ experiences.
I hope we’re building a body of work that will encourage people to join the profession and continue to find new professional growth opportunities in veterinary medicine—and I think it will help pet owners better understand both the difficulties and the joys veterinary team members experience.Subscribe to the VCA Voice Podcast on all major streaming channels – and don’t forget to rate and review the program!