Every year the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) puts on a great educational convention in December. The education the attendees receive is by far the best in equine veterinary medicine.  It is also a venue for many veterinarians, national and international, to have an opportunity to meet up with old friends and make new ones. 

AAEP Convention is a great time for old friends to meet together and share new ideas.

Photo: Courtesy Dr. Erin Denney-Jones

Networking with your colleagues, students, vendors, and even the AAEP staff can also benefit the solo and beginning equine practitioner. As you know, equine veterinarians are always on the move, so after a day of many forums and committee meetings (a lot of sitting and listening) on important topics in equine veterinary health such as infectious disease and equine welfare, the veterinarians get to enjoy some socializing. 

The cocktail reception kicks off the meeting Saturday night and that is where old friends plan to meet and go out for dinner. The dinners provide the time to catch up with each other regarding our personal life more than our practice life. Sometimes a new person will join the group for dinner or after dinner for drinks and a new contact has been made. 

I have come to see the AAEP members as my extended family. With social media these days we do more "catching up" between the annual meetings but nothing is better than the over dinner conversations and especially the stories. "Shop" talk is always there and new ideas come from these small gatherings of friends outside of the educational sessions. I will say that it is a good thing we equine veterinarians are use to running on very little sleep!

 Erin Denney-Jones, DVM