A study was carried out to explore the prospective career dimensions of undergraduate veterinary students in Andhra Pradesh. Data was collected through structured questionnaire from randomly selected 150 undergraduate students from the existing three veterinary colleges (50 from each) under Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University. The results revealed that majority of the students (78.60 per cent) preferred to work in India after completion of their graduation, preferred more for government jobs rather than private practice which was opposite to those students revealed in developed countries. Irrespective to the colleges, majority of the students desired to work in rural areas (64.00 per cent) and chose large animal practice (42.00 per cent) as their choice of practice while majority of the students expressed that they want to pursue higher studies (72.00 per cent), among them most wanted to pursue in Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (32.00 per cent) after completion of under graduation and also opinioned that internship training programme (84.00 per cent) at undergraduate level is relevant in career selection.
The choice of career in the veterinary field is a personal decision influenced by multitude of factors. Career choices are influenced both by the graduates inclination before starting veterinary college as well as any exposure during the training in veterinary college. Appropriate choice of career is reported to have greater attention in the world of work (Kulshrestha, 1979). The modern society with its scientific and technological advancement, its division of labour and specialization of functions demand the fullest use of man power at all levels. Our pressing need today is to harness and broaden the ways and means of proper utilization of man power resources. Therefore, capacities and strengths require a proper direction. This will culminate into the fresh attempt towards research in career orientation with a view to understand the ways in which our teeming millions may choose their career (Mattoo and Surga, 2007).Considerable amount of research has been carried out in the area of career selection in India and abroad. While scanning the existing findings, it is reported that the results are not in uniform direction. Therefore, an attempt is made with an effort to explore the prospective career dimensions of undergraduate veterinary students in Andhra Pradesh.
Three veterinary colleges, constituent institutes of Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University in Andhra Pradesh were purposively selected for the study as the researcher hails from the state. The data was collected through structured questionnaire from the randomly selected veterinary students, 50 each from three colleges thus to form a sample size of 150.
Results and Discussion
The data from the Table 1 revealed that, majority of the students (78.60 per cent) preferred to work in India. About 8.00 per cent of students could not decide their place of preference for work. Students preferred to serve their own country because of job security reasons. Sector wise about 75 per cent of the students opted government sector followed by private organizations (18.66 per cent), self employed (2.00 per cent) and in NGOs (1.34 per cent) respectively. 3.00 per cent of the students had not yet decided about the sector in which they desired to be employed after their graduation.
Table 1: Preferred Country and Sector as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Career Choices||Respondents (N=150)||Rank|
|Not yet decided||12||8.00||III|
|Not yet decided||05||3.00||III|
Heath and Western (1991) also found that five per cent of veterinary graduates in Australia were undecided about the work they would be doing after their graduation. Students felt that government jobs are more secured in India with attractive salary and timely promotions. Martin et al., 2003 and Jelinski et al., 2009 reported that veterinary students from Australia and Canada preferred private practice. Irrespective to the colleges, majority of the veterinary students desired to work in rural areas (64.00 per cent), while 36.00 per cent opted urban areas (Table 2), most of the students wanted to carry out large animal practice (42.00 per cent) followed by small animal practice (31.33 per cent), wild animal practice (16.00 per cent), equine practice (5.33 per cent), mixed animal practice (4.00 per cent) and 1.33 per cent of the students could not decide about the practice they would like to carry out after completion of their under graduation respectively (Table 3).
Table 2: Preferred Area to Work as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Area to Work||Respondents (N=150)|
Table 3: Preferred Animal Practice as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Animal Practice||Respondents (N=150)|
|Large animal practice||63||42.00||I|
|Small animal practice||47||31.33||II|
|Wild animal practice||24||16.00||III|
|Mixed animal practice||06||4.00||V|
|Not yet decided||02||1.33||VI|
It is clear from the Table 4 and 5 that 72.00 per cent of the students opined that they would undergo higher studies after completion of under graduation and among them 32.00 per cent preferred to study in Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (SVVU) followed by 22.00 per cent in other state veterinary universities in India, 18 per cent in abroad and among the total 150 respondents selected for the study, 20.00 per cent of the students expressed that they would not undergo higher studies while 8.00 per cent have not yet decided whether to pursue higher studies or not after completion of under graduation.
Table 4: Preference towards Higher Studies as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Preference towards Higher studies||Respondents (N=150)|
|Yes, I want to pursue higher studies||108||72.00|
|No, I do not want to pursue to higher studies||30||20.00|
|Not yet decided||12||8.00|
At the end majority of the students (84.00 per cent) expressed that internship training programme at undergraduate level is relevant in career selection while 16.00 per cent of the students expressed that it is not relevant (Table 6).
Table 5: Preferred Place of Study for Pursuing Higher Studies as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Preference towards Place of Study||Respondents (N=108)|
|Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (SVVU)||48||32.00|
|Other State Veterinary Universities in India||32||22.00|
|Other Veterinary Universities in abroad||28||18.00|
Table 6: Impact of Internship Training Programme in Career Selection as Expressed by Veterinary Students
|Impact of Internship Training Programme||Respondents (N=150)|
|Yes, it is relevant||126||84.00|
|No, it is not relevant||24||16.00|
The students of veterinary profession preferred government jobs in India rather than private practice while the scenario was quite opposite to the preferences of veterinary students in developed countries. Majority of the students desired to work in rural areas and carryout mostly large animal practice and mass of the students opined that they would undergo higher studies after completion of under graduation and among them majority preferred to study in Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (SVVU). Most of the under graduate veterinary students opined that internship training programme at under graduate level is relevant in career selection.