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Ross, UNAM earn full AVMA accreditation

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Mar 16, 2011
By dvm360.com staff
Schaumburg, Ill. -- The Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y Zootecnia (UNAM) in Mexico City and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine in St. Kitts, West Indies, are the latest foreign veterinary colleges to receive accreditation from the American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA) Council on Education (COE).

The road to accreditation has been long for both schools, with Ross first seeking accreditation in 2006 and UNAM in 1996.

For Ross, final accreditation came after a number of program and facility upgrades, outlined by COE, were put into place. The school also increased faculty and staff, added new buildings and made renovations to others.

COE had outlined the changes after its first consultative visit to the school in September 2006, according to AVMA. By 2010, Ross asked AVMA to conduct another visit and review the changes that had been made to the veterinary program. After conducting another comprehensive accreditation site visit in January 2011, the COE voted at its March 6-8, 2011, meeting, to grant the school full accreditation for a period of seven years. The next site visit at Ross is slated for 2018.

“Achieving AVMA accreditation further affirms our commitment to excellence in veterinary education,” says David J. DeYoung, DVM, Ross’ veterinary school dean. “We are pleased with the decision of the accrediting board and look forward to working with other AVMA-accredited schools and our affiliate clinical partners in the U.S. to advance the future of veterinary education.”

Ross admits three new classes of veterinary students each year, with the last being a class of 138 in January. The college has graduated more than 2,500 veterinarians since it was founded in 1982, says AVMA.

For UNAM, the path to accreditation took a different course. COE issued an “adverse decision” on UNAM’s accreditation bid in March 2010, but changes to federal rules on accreditation that took effect in July forced the COE to abandon its March decision and consider an appeal from UNAM with a response about each deficiency noted from the COE site visit. At its September 2010 meeting, AVMA says COE decided to revisit the school in February 2011. Final accreditation was granted by COE to UNAM at its March 2011 meeting.

The new accreditations bring the total number of foreign veterinary schools accredited by AVMA to 16, including five in Canada. Twenty-eight veterinary colleges are accredited in the U.S.