Veterinary

New RCVS president stresses importance of role models

New president of the RCVS Nial Connell, has stressed the importance of role models to inspire vets and improve diversity in the industry.

He takes on the role after being elected to the council in 2013, and replaces outgoing president Amanda Boag, who has now become senior vice-president of the RCVS.

Connell outlined his other priorities during his presidential year, including, continuing the work of the Graduate Outcomes project to better understand how young vets can be supported in the early part of their career; continuing to work with BVA and Defra on Brexit preparations; continuing to look at the role of RVNs and other paraprofessionals; and carrying out the College’s pending review on ‘under care’ and 24/7 cover.

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He will continue to chair the RCVS Diversity and Inclusion Group aimed at trying to break down barriers in regards to selection, recruitment and retention, and to encourage more ethnic and socio-economic background diversity within the profession.

Connell said: “We can all benefit from having role models throughout our lives, but children in particular need them most. We should be encouraging diverse role models into schools, to improve awareness of our professions and help inspire youngsters from all backgrounds.

“We also need to improve, support, and protect diversity in the workplace and not be afraid to call out things that are not right or safe for any individual.”

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