AVMA cuts funding to VLE program; students ante up funds in support of leadership training

Sep 05, 2009
By staff
Seattle -- The Student American Veterinary Medical Association (SAVMA) ponied up $25,000 from its reserves to help fund the 2010 Veterinary Leadership Experience (VLE). The next day, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) slashed $300,000 in VLE funding for the next four years.
AVMA only narrowly avoided a dues increase this year and is still keeping close watch on its finances, association officials say. The same is true for SAVMA, but the group still voted to increase student membership dues by $2 per year. The increase was debated but finally approved and is expected to generate another $22,000 per year for the association.
The increased funding will almost pay for the contribution of $25,000 SAVMA voted to contribute out of its reserve fund for the 2010 VLE offered by Washington State University. The program started in 2004 and AVMA has co-sponsored VLE since 2005, AVMA reports.

At July’s annual AVMA conference, the AVMA Executive Board voted against the $300,000, four-year contribution the House of Delegates recommended the AVMA make at its January meeting.

However, AVMA did direct its Membership and Field Services Division to work with SAVMA to prioritize its programs to determine which are most deserving of continued sponsorship. The findings will be presented at a November board meeting and could recommend continued AVMA funding of the VLE program.