Friday, December 14, 2007

CL10: To Become a Vet!

Background:

This is speech no 10 in the Competent and Leadership manual. The most challenging speech in the manual. Toastmaster Goh Sheen Yee has joined the rank of Competent Communicator.

Actual Speech:

Good Evening Ladies and Gentlemen, fellow Toastmasters and guests. It is indeed my pleasure to stand here right on this stage tonight to deliver you a speech.

Have you ever experience the difficulty of making an important decision? A decision so important that it would change your life or determine your future? Like a decision to get married……

When it comes to making decisions, some people follow the crowd; others take the road less traveled. Whatever it is that we chose, there is one thing for sure, once we made a decision that is it! We have got to take full responsibility of our own decision or believe in the decision that we have made is the right decision.

I decided to pursue a veterinary medicine course a year and a half ago. I am going to share with you how I feel about the decision that I had made.

The grass is always greener on the other side. Here are my thoughts:

What if I pursued a different course? My life would be different. I will get a whole new and exciting experience. I wish I could turn back the pointing hands of the clock.

I entered the vet school and I didn’t quite like it initially. The lectures I had to attend were boring and dull. Since topic of lectures did not suit my taste, I found myself half asleep in the lecture halls. Everyday life seemed like a tiring routine and I really missed my home (and the home-cooked food). People asked me why I want to become a vet. I prefer not to answer that question. When they knew that I am a vet student, people ask: So you really like animals huh? I prefer not to answer that question too considering the fact that not all animals are adorable, for instance the scaly slimy Sunbeam Snake makes my skin hairs stand. At the end, I convinced myself that I didn’t like vet school.

After a year and a half doing vet medicine course, I realized that veterinary knowledge is a precious set of knowledge. Veterinary knowledge encompasses all knowledge on animals’ health and animals’ welfare.

Vet students learn like human doctors. We treat. We treat animals with medicine and drugs. We vaccinate animals against diseases. We also take good care of animals’ welfare by ensuring that animals are treated kindly and humanely.

This field of knowledge is really worth pursuing because we learn almost everything.

We learn about the invincible microbes such as viruses, bacteria and others; some which cause diseases. We study them to control the harmful ones like the Nipah virus. The animal’s anatomy is important. Now I know the precise location and shape of the bull’s testicles and penis (for surgery purpose)! Besides, we need to acquire the surgical skills such as fixing broken bones and neutering small animals to control the problem of over population of strays.

This knowledge that I am acquiring makes me feel great and proud to be in a vet school.

Besides, Vet students were encouraged to participate in organizing activities and events. The Vet faculty has always been very supportive of student organized activities. Recently I was part of the organizing committee for International Veterinary Student Association Symposium held in Asia, Malaysia for the first time where delegates from 16 countries come to Malaysia to share knowledge, exchange cultures and opinions and learn new skills. It is through activities that I learned that working with other people as a team has not always been easy. Armed with good communication skills and leadership skills, conflicts and misunderstandings had been overcome.

My life is going to be centered on animals. Since I entered vet school, I visited numerous zoos, horse units, farms and animal clinics. I touched snakes. I loved my dog, Black Jack more than ever especially the way he smells. I think like animals too considering the fact that I always put myself in their shoes.

There is no right or wrong decisions. Go ahead and make a life changing decision. Embrace whatever the challenges that comes our way upon the road that we have chosen to partake. And after we made that life changing decision, don’t look back; just step forward!

”A real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided.” – Tony Robbins

By, Goh Sheen Yee