What’s your name, and what graduating class were you from?
Sarah Krumrie, GUVS Class of 2018
What do you do at the moment?
I’m about to finish my third year as a Veterinary Public Health and Infectious Diseases resident at the University of Glasgow.
What did your pathway look like, and how did you get your current job?
From a young age I wanted to be in general practice: Classic story. I did my first degree in microbiology and chemistry, which, at the time, was torture. I hated microscopes and small cell biology; if I never put on another lab coat I wouldn’t have been sad about it.
I couldn’t wait to get into vet school but didn’t get in the first time I applied, so I took a job as a cross “trained” receptionist/tech (When we were busy, which was often) at a veterinary clinic. It was here I began to think clinical practice might not be for me. Interacting with the general population was exhausting and felt forced. I couldn’t be myself at work and I came home angry every day, snapping at my friends and family. Vets told me it would be different when I was the vet, not the receptionist, but by then the idyllic bubble had popped. I stayed in contact with many of those vets when I was accepted into vet school a year later.
One summer I was told by one of the vets I had a “pathology personality.” Whatever was meant by that statement, it made me think about other branches of veterinary medicine. I began to look into anatomic pathology and absolutely loved the puzzle of visualising and solving disease processes right in front of me (Not to mention pathologists are pretty cool). I was planning on applying to an anatomic pathology residency once I graduated but was strongly encouraged to undertake a year in practice to have a competitive application. In the midst of panicking that I may have to spend a year with the general public, a friend and member of staff who knew my feelings about career paths sent me a listing advertised on the university website for my current position. I was lucky enough to get the position and the rest is history.
Why did you choose to move away from clinical work?
I am mentally and emotionally exhausted by seeing clients on a regular basis, and working primarily in clinical practice was not sustainable for my mental health. I also could never be myself working in clinical practice, which is very important to me.
What is the best part of the job?
Being able to be my unapologetic self every day. Also being able to dabble in many different research projects to learn about the scientific world.
This job may not be for you if…
You don’t like research. Or working in isolation/without an external motivator.
Do you have any words of wisdom for other alumni?
You are not your job. You are a composition of your values, thoughts, traits, memories, so much more, that may make you GREAT at your job, but changing your job does not change who you are. If you don’t like what you’re doing, change or leave. It does not change YOU.