Mini-series: Blogging to build community – Stories from the Vet School

Celebrating last day of lectures in the Vet School

In this blog post from the Academic Blogging Mini-Series, Francesca Coates, the Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVM&S) Student Recruitment Officer, introduces a new blog from the Vet School, which aims to build an academic community for new and current students…

In October 2018, shortly after the University’s new blogging platform went live, I launched Stories from Vet School . I originally created this blog to use as an additional recruitment and conversion tool in order to showcase vet student life to prospective students and other visitors. My aim was to build it up enough to have it ready for 2019 entry conversion, where we convert offers to acceptances.

Content is provided by current vet student ambassadors recruited to take part in the project. They contribute one blog post per month, and write about their experience of the Dick Vet and about being a student at Edinburgh. I give them ideas for content that range from the course itself, living in Edinburgh and exploring Scotland, to work placements and extracurricular activities, to name a few. However, students are also free to blog about other topics of their choosing as long as they adhere to University guidelines. Once the post is ready, I review it and publish it.

The blog has also been a great opportunity for current students to try their hand at creative writing and build on the sense of community which is already very strong amongst BVM&S students. Eventually, it may also be helpful for other current students to read about the experience of older year students.

Stories from Vet School has several posts covering a wide range of topics and is now ready to be opened to a wider audience. As we are now in our conversion window, I recently started promoting the blog to offer holders as a further way of immersing themselves into the life of a vet student at Edinburgh. I will include the blog in upcoming projects and activities as a new recruitment cycle will start soon.

Stories from Vet School is still quite young and has not received much feedback yet as I have only recently started promoting it. Nevertheless, I hope this can be taken as a constructive example of a community building blog and can be helpful for others who might be thinking of creating something similar.

Francesca Coates

Francesca is the Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVM&S) Student Recruitment Officer.

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