Celebrating Our First Year of the Student Debt Freedom Award

The AVMA recently published statistics around veterinary student debt that highlights what those of us in the profession already know: the student debt load for veterinary graduates continues to soar.

  • The mean educational debt for U.S. veterinary college graduates for 2020 was $157,146.
  • Women graduated with a higher debt-to-income ratio, on average than men.
  • 1.4% of 2020 graduates, graduated with debt higher than the total cost of their veterinary education.
  • Students who reported a significant life event during their veterinary education had more debt than those who did not. Also, students who had to repeat courses had higher debt.

The veterinary profession faces compassion fatigue challenges with the burden of student debt being piled on top. Our profession and our people need help to overcome these challenges.

One year ago, Encore launched the Student Debt Freedom Award to significantly impact the lives of Veterinarians and Credentialed Veterinary Technicians who face extreme student debt and burnout challenges.  By paying down the student debt for our Veterinarians and CVTs, Encore hopes to help team members live happier and more fulfilling lives.

Throughout 2021, we received applications from our esteemed veterinarians and technicians demonstrating how they are committed to Encore’s CORE Values.  They shared narratives on how they work to positively impact their communities and  support their hospital teams, and how the Freedom Award would, in turn, affect their lives.  From stories about home renovations to dreams of family vacations, to feeling the financial freedom to create a better work-life balance, it was clear that the Freedom Award would truly impact lives in areas that matter most.  At Encore, we feel even more energized and determined to help our Veterinarians and Credentialed Veterinary Technicians pay off their student debt.

In 2021 alone, Encore tackled over 12 debt loads – 6 DVMs, and 6 CVTs…and we’re just getting started.

Melissa Mauldin, Director of HR Engagement notes, “We want to recognize and shine a light on our most recent Student Debt Freedom Award recipients.  These individuals were selected based on their commitment to the veterinary profession and their positive impact on their practice.”









We are so excited to see how this program continues to evolve and positively impact the lives of our veterinary professionals!

Interested in learning more? Contact Melissa Mauldin, Director, HR Engagement, at Melissa.Mauldin@encorevet.com.