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Animal Assisted Interventions Workshop
In March, Veterinary Social Work hosted its annual Animal Assisted Interventions Workshop for mental health professionals and students. The workshop facilitators, Aviva Vincent and Dr. Zenithson Ng, helped attendees prepare their own potential AAI program. 

Learning objectives:
  • To be proficient in AAI program design, implementation, and evaluation using the logic model
  • To recognize the challenges of developing AAI programs and working directly with clients
  • To understand the ethical considerations of the use of animals in AAI
  • To navigate potential adverse events regarding AAI
  • To be competent in creating and conducting an animal-assisted therapy session
Attendees Katie and Rosie spending time with Drizzy, a therapy dog in training.
Katie and Diana participate in role play with a HABIT (Human Animal Bond in Tennessee) dog. 
Veterinary Social Work Intensive
During March, Veterinary Social Work hosted the 5-day Veterinary Social Work Intensive. The training is open to Veterinary Social Work Certificate Students. At this training, attendees work to improve their skills in the three other core areas of veterinary social work- the link between human and animal violence, animal related grief and bereavement, and compassion fatigue. Through unique experiences, observing, reflecting, and practicing, attendees are able to synthesize the information and further the necessary skills needed for veterinary social work. 

The intensive offered several unique experiences related to veterinary social work:
  • 3 panels consisting of veterinarians, animal welfare professionals, and veterinary social workers
  • A trip to a pet cemetery/crematorium 
  • A trip to a farm (horses and zebus!)  
  • Tour of Young-Williams Animal Center
  • Tour of UTCVM animal hospitals
  • And several opportunities to discuss and practice skills  
Left: Attendees visited a farm with horses and Zebus
Right: Professionals speak to attendees about their jobs and experiences 
Exciting VSWCP and AlignCare™ Opportunity!
AlignCare™ is looking for licensed masters level social workers to participate in a program to address poverty and the human-animal bond. This is not a job position, rather a scholarship opportunity. This opportunity comes with scholarship funds for the Postgraduate Veterinary Social Work Certificate Program. 
What is AlignCare
AlignCare™ is a service of the Program for Pet Health Equity in the UT College of Social Work. Funded by a $2.8 million Maddie’s Fund Grant,  AlignCare™ is a three-year project that will provide community-based financial support to families in need of effective pet care. Families' selected for the program can receive basic care from enrolled veterinary providers. Through social services, public health programs, and nonprofits, pet owners will be screened to identify those who need priority support because of the mental and emotional health aspects of the relationships they share with their pets and their economic need.
How much is the scholarship?
This opportunity includes a scholarship for the VSWCP. The scholarship is $3500 per student.
Who is eligible?
Licensed masters level social workers in the following areas: 
  • Madison, WI 
  • Knoxville, TN 
  • Harrogate, TN
  • Asheville, NC
  • Findlay, OH
  • Pomona, CA
  • Glendale, AZ
  • Denver, CO
  • Houston, TX
  • Miami, FL
  • Rural Nevada

How do I apply?
There is an application process that will includes submission of resume, transcript, a letter of intent, 3 references, and at least one live web meeting interview.
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Job Opportunities 

UT VSW does not endorse or verify job openings. The below job openings are an opportunity for you, the applicant, to verify and research on your own. We share postings that are searching for a variety of professionals with different educational backgrounds.
We're hiring!
UT Veterinary Social Worker 

The University of Tennessee invites applications from all qualified individuals for a full time 12 month faculty appointment as veterinary social worker in the department of Biomedical and Diagnostic Sciences at the College of Veterinary Medicine in Knoxville. The position will be offered at the rank of assistant or associate clinical professor dependent upon the individual qualifications.

The successful candidate will join a team of two other social workers that provide clinical care, academic teaching, and research in the Veterinary Medical College. We are seeking candidates who have the ability to contribute in meaningful ways to the diversity and intercultural goals of university. Qualified applicants must have: 1) a masters level degree or higher in social work, 2) Tennessee social work license or license eligible, 3) at least three years experience in a social work micro practice, 4) excellent verbal and written communication skills, 5) experience with and comfort in the use of technology for providing clinical care, 6) the ability to work well with others in a collegial team atmosphere, 7) the ability to navigate complex relationships that exist in providing social services in a host setting and, 8) demonstrated methods of self-care as a form of responsible social work practice.

Preferred qualifications include: 1) experience providing veterinary social work services in a veterinary medical setting or training in veterinary social work, 2) experience working in higher education, 3) experience leading mental health services delivery in community and hospital settings, 4) experience in hospice and grief and bereavement counseling, and 5) board certification in life coaching credential.

The successful candidate is expected to provide high quality short-term counseling, coaching, and consultation services to veterinary students, faculty, staff and clients of the veterinary medical college and teaching hospital, as well as the larger community. The candidate is also expected to participate in the training of social work students as well as facilitating communication skills training for veterinary medical students. The position will provide direct micro services in the veterinary teaching hospital to support clients and staff. The successful candidate must be comfortable with the delivery of counseling, consultation, and coaching via telebehavioral health approaches.

Applicants should submit: 1) letter of intent, including professional interests and goals, 2) current curriculum vitae, and 3) names and contact information (including email addresses) of three professional references to the search committee Chair, Dr. Elizabeth Strand, care of:
Ms. Elizabeth Allen
Department of Biomedical and Diagnostic Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine University of Tennessee
2407 River Dr., Room A201
Knoxville, TN 37996– 4542
Email address:

Informal inquiries are welcome. Review of applications will begin on April 8, 2019, and continue until the position is filled.
Veterinary Social Worker
Milwaukee, WI
As a member of Lakeshore’s administrative team, the Veterinary Social Worker’s (VSW) primary responsibility is to provide emotional support to clients of the hospital and consultation regarding clients with hospital staff. The VSW will also provide supportive services, short term interventions and psychoeducational programs for employees of the hospital. The VSW will assist in maintaining program initiatives and developing new proposals. The VSW serves as a field instructor for the social work internship program for the hospital. The VSW primarily operates out of Lakeshore’s Oak Creek location, but can travel to other locations as needed. 
For a full description of the position and to apply, please go to:
Facility Dog Program Coordinator
Fort Worth, TX

The Facility Dog Program Coordinator is responsible for the coordination of our resident dog program, Sit Stay Play. The Coordinator will handle one of the facility dogs, as well as provide oversight for the handling of the dogs in the program, the referral process for therapeutic visits with patients, rounding on staff, and participation in applicable research utilizing the resident dogs. As a staff member of Family Support Service, the Facility Dog Program Coordinator will demonstrate a commitment to Cook Children's Health Care System operating values and integrate them into each job function.

More Information
Veterinary Social Worker 
Orchard Park, New York 

The Veterinary Social Worker’s (VSW) primary responsibility is to develop and maintain a social work program for Orchard Park Veterinary Medical Center and their clients and staff. It is intended that the social work program become a robust program, providing extensive support services to clients of the hospital (families of the pets), consultation regarding clients to veterinary staff, quality of life and end of life counseling to families of patients, and extensive resources about grief, euthanasia, and memorialization. Support groups will include pet loss groups and a group for caregivers of elderly or terminally ill pets. The VSW will also provide supportive services, short term interventions, psychoeducational programs and trainings for employees of the hospital. The VSW will develop a social work internship and serve as field instructor for the hospital. Once developed, it is expected that the VSW will train interns to fulfill many of the client care responsibilities while under the supervision of the VSW/Field Instructor. The majority of staff care responsibilities, facilitation of support groups for clients, and the direction of the program will be fulfilled by the VSW. This is a full-time position.

For more information, contact Sandra Brackenridge at

Veterinary Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Blacksburg, VA 

The successful candidate will work within the College of Veterinary Medicine to establish Animal-Related Grief and Bereavement services to clients of the VTH (Veterinary Teaching Hospital), while educating students, staff and faculty on identifying and supporting clients who would benefit from the above services. This includes providing short term counseling to clients and providing referrals to community mental health professionals as needed. The candidate will need to promote general wellness among the students, staff, and faculty of the VTH with a focus on compassion fatigue and conflict management, provide brief crisis intervention in the hospital setting and establish a pet loss hot line. Outreach to the community is expected.

More Information
Social Worker/Therapist- Animal Therapy
Hamilton, NJ

Position Summary:  To provide high quality comprehensive clinical services as an Animal-Assisted Therapist that include: clinical triage, psychosocial evaluations, group, and family treatment, treatment plan development and coordination, referent relations, discharge planning, utilization management with insurance companies, and case management with social service support systems, schools and other relevant external entities. The above services shall be provided under supervision of the appropriate clinical discipline. This position represents the Animal-Assisted Therapy Program through a variety of mechanisms including presentations, meetings with referral sources and interviews. The Animal –Assisted Therapist may provide services at multiple sites.

More Information
PATH or EAGALA certified instructors
Chagrin Falls, OH
Fieldstone Farm also is always interested in outstanding PATH or EAGALA certified instructors for our growing program. Please contact Aviva Vincent, Director, Program Quality, at to inquire.
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Street Outreach Services Outreach Worker
San Francisco, CA
Under the supervision of the SOS Program Coordinator, the SOS Outreach Worker will provide bi-lingual (English: Spanish) outreach services to homeless persons and their companion animals in San Francisco and operate program vehicles. This work will be done in collaboration with other outreach staff, medical and veterinary personnel, students, volunteers, and community partners. A 2-year commitment is preferred.
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PALS Program Coordinator 
Will be responsible for day-to-day operations and growth of PALS. Will conduct comprehensive assessments for families seeking shelter and participation in PALS. Work closely with community partners to coordinate timely access for pets’ veterinary care, and treatment related to animal abuse. Identify, secure and monitor necessary pet supplies and products, and oversee inventory management. Assist clients identify and access “pet friendly” practices, including obtaining pets’ orders of protection, exploring suitable housing options, and addressing pet ownership issues. Coordinate and/or facilitate animal welfare safety staff training, including signs of animal abuse, proper pet care, and accessing community resources.
More Information
3 Part Time and 1 Full Time Clinical Staff​  
Murray, UT 

Utah Healing Center is hiring three part time and one full time clinical staff.  We are looking for Clinical Social Worker (CSW), Associate Clinical Mental Health Counselor (ACMHC), Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CMHC), Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), or Psychologist for our Outpatient Murray clinic that serves children, adolescents, and adults. This position offers competitive pay in a beautiful office.

New graduates are welcome.

Provides professional counseling services of a preventative and developmental nature through direct consultation with patients. Therapy activities include individual, group and couples counseling. Develops program criteria for area of specialization such as couples or trauma counseling.

More Information

Contact Us

Veterinary Social Work Certificate Program
University of Tennessee
College of Veterinary Medicine
College of Social Work
VSW Services:
Certificate Program:

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Veterinary Social Work-UTK · 2407 River Drive, Rm C222 · Knoxville, TN 37996 · USA

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