A pre-veterinary internship like no other
I’m sure you know by now that getting into vet school is highly competitive. Our 4 week pre-vet internship will give you the experience and tools necessary to set you apart from other candidates and prepare you to get into the school you desire.
Follow our vets as they treat sick and injured wildlife. You will participate and learn from our wildlife rescue center and Scarlet Macaw reintroduction program. In 4 weeks our vets will get to know you so that they can write your recommendation letter for vet school. Meanwhile you get some first hand experience of what being a vet is really all about!
Wild Sun Rescue Center
At the rescue center, in addition to practicing animal husbandry and rehabilitation in the ICU, students assist in necessary surgeries and emergency procedures. Students may practice proper restraint techniques for mammals, birds and reptiles, perform physical exams and hands-off evaluations, identify and treat parasites, administer fluids, perform necropsies, practice syringe and tube feeding techniques as well as suturing, wound care and identifying stages of healing. Patient rounds are conducted often along with topic discussions and presentations. There are onsite labs and demonstrations, evaluation and feedback meetings and execution of specialty projects that could include nutrition research, proper use of medications, or even enclosure design.
Among other things, students gain a deeper knowledge of what conservation medicine is and how it differs from exotic and zoo medicine, what role a veterinarian plays in conservation, and when and how animals can return to the wild. Animals that we often have in care are the Golden Mantled Howler Monkey, White Faced Capuchin Monkey, Collared Anteater, White-nosed Coati, Kinkajou, Agouti, Lowland Paca, Spotted Skunk, Northern Raccoon, Nine-banded Armadillo, White-tailed Deer, Variegated Squirrel, Mexican Hairy Porcupine, Woolly and Common Opossum, and a variety of birds. When possible, we will also participate in spay and neuter campaigns to help control the local dog and cat population, which threatens wildlife daily. These clinics happen twice a year.
Getting Into Vet School
Some of the most important criteria for students applying to vet school includes experience in the field, communication skills and references from veterinarians. By participating in our pre-vet internship, you will get all 3 and more! The Wild Sun Internship gives students the skills necessary to stand apart from other applicants, to speak intelligently on the veterinarian’s role in conservation, and to show your commitment to your future career.
Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction
As students you will learn how to care for these birds and the process it takes for a species reintroduction program to be carried out. Among other tasks, when applicable, you will help micro chip and extract blood for DNA testing. You may even be asked to monitor the health of recently released Macaws.
We'll also take the time out to take advantage of some of the natural wonders of Costa Rica! Be they waterfalls, ocean voyages or beautiful sunsets, adventure awaits. Students will get to visit the Montezuma Waterfalls, Isla Cabuya Cemetery Island, go horseback riding or zip lining through the jungle, dip into a cliffside infinity pool with a swim up bar and view wildlife while hiking Cabo Blanco- Costa Rica's first national park, amongst other outings.
How It Works
Rolling Admissions for VET STUDENT internships starting all Sundays, November - early April
Vet Students may apply for any time of the year at your convenience from November - early April. From May-September we have set starting dates in 4 week intervals.
Remaining Summer Sessions 2019:
Session 4 August 11th- September 8th
Summer Sessions 2020:
Session 1 May 17th- June 14th
Session 2 June 14th- July 12th
Session 3 July 12th- August 9th
Session 4 August 9th- September 6th
Program fee: $5,850 USD
Many of our students receive grants and scholarships to attend from their schools. Please check with your student affairs and study abroad offices for what is available. We also have provided links at the bottom of the page for opportunities outside of your school. ***
Poolside Shared Deluxe Accommodations with A/C, private outdoor bath with hot water showers, mini fridge, digital safe, satellite tv, ocean view, and patio with swing chairs. Maximum 3 people per room.
Professional meal plan including 3 meals a day Sunday through Friday plus breakfast on Saturdays (you have access to a shared kitchen between meals). On Saturdays you may choose to cook for yourself, participate in pot lucks or go out to one of the many delicious restaurants in Cabuya, Montezuma or Santa Teresa.
Excursions, outings and tours mentioned above
Transportation from San Jose to Cabuya
Saturday lunch and dinner
Extra transportation such as taxis to Montezuma and ATV rentals