Rajan earned a Bachelor of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry (BVSc & AH) in India and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Applied Animal Behaviour and Animal Welfare at The University of Edinburgh in Scotland.
After completing his master’s and then for seven years more, Rajan gained experience working in India. As a general practice veterinarian, he examined and treated sick and injured animals at a government hospital.
Although he was a successful veterinarian, Rajan began to consider moving to Canada in search of more opportunities to grow professionally. Since veterinary practice is regulated in India by the Veterinary Council of India (VCI), Rajan assumed it was the same in Canada. He did some research and found the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA)’s website, which detailed the steps required to receive the Canadian certification.
Since he received his master’s from a school accredited by the Council of Education of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA COE), Rajan decided to register with the CVMA National Examining Board (NEB) and write an exam. So, he started the registration process in India. He took the English exam and gathered all of the required documents for assessment. Once the NEB reviewed his application, they indicated the next steps. After passing the Basic and Clinical Sciences Examination (BCSE), he started preparing for the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE), which is a theory exam.
It didn’t take long for Rajan to make up his mind and decide to emigrate. He was single at the time, so it was an easy step to make. On why he chose Calgary, Rajan explains: “a family friend was there and told me there were more opportunities in that city. Also, better taxation and better living.”
Soon after arriving in Canada, Rajan started working full-time as a security officer. Although he was grateful for the opportunity, it wasn’t his dream job. Rajan made just enough money to cover his living expenses. “My job was good, and I liked working there,” he says. “The work environment was good, and my supervisor was great. But it wasn’t something I wanted to do my whole life. That wasn’t my goal.”
In Canada, and after a little bit of effort, he passed the NAVLE. At this point, he was ready to tackle the Clinical Proficiency Examination (CPE), a hands-on, practical exam; however, money was tight, and his savings weren’t enough. He had already invested a significant amount of money paying for the two previous exams’ fees, training and travel expenses.
Luckily, Rajan found out about Windmill Microlending while doing some online research. “I was trying to get any loan, and I came across Windmill’s website. I called and asked about the process. Everyone was friendly and cooperative. The loan was approved a couple of weeks after. Overall, it was a good experience,” he says.
At the time his loan was approved, Rajan was working on and off because he was preparing for his final exam. “The loan helped me pay for my last exam fee, which was my practicum,” indicates Rajan.
He obtained a Certificate of Qualification (CQ) and became eligible to practise as a veterinarian in Canada by the end of 2016. Rajan wasted no time. He immediately received a job offer from a clinic that specializes in dogs and cats in Vancouver, left his job as a security officer and moved to British Columbia.
Rajan’s Windmill loan provided the financial support he needed to finally achieve his career goals in Canada. “It took me several years to be where I am because I didn’t have enough funds. With a little bit more money, I could have done it earlier,” recalls Rajan.
Today, Rajan’s life couldn’t be better. He continues to work at the same clinic that offered him his first full-time job as a veterinarian. Now married, he and his wife find great enjoyment in Vancouver’s beauty, pleasant weather and all the different foods that Canada has to offer.
“Now, my goal is to grow. I want to get additional training and some more advanced practicum. I would like to upgrade my knowledge and advance my skills, and learn more about dentistry and internal medicine,” says Rajan.
After a long re-certification process and few challenges, Rajan tells other professionals: “Stick to your goals. Keep on working hard to achieve them. Sometimes it can be a tedious and frustrating process, but once you attain your goals, things get easier. So, it’s better to stay focused, keep trying. That’s what you’re here for.”