2015 Intern & Resident Salaries at U.S. Schools and Colleges of Veterinary Medicine
Historically, post-DVM training programs have paid salaries
lower than the national average for recent graduates.
As recently as 2013, the American Veterinary
Medical Association (AVMA) reported new graduate veterinarians earning an
average annual salary of $66,0001; substantially higher than
veterinarians who entered advance training programs at the completion of their
In 2014, the American Association of Veterinary Clinicians
(AAVC) reported that 1005 internship positions and 353 residency positions were
available in the Veterinary Internship/Residency Match Program. Internship
programs are largely found in private practices; only 26.5% of internship positions
were matched within the US schools and colleges of veterinary medicine. Residency
programs were overwhelmingly (82%) located within institutions, specifically
colleges of veterinary medicine2. The
Association of American Veterinary
Medical Colleges (AAVMC) conducts an annual data collection of its 30 members
in the United States.
provide more detail about the scope of intern and resident pay at the US
colleges of veterinary medicine.
Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC)
conducts an annual data collection of its 30 accredited members in the United
States. Twenty-seven member institutions in the United States
voluntarily reported salary information for veterinary interns and residents
for the 2014-2015 academic year.
medical school surveyed reported individual salaries in of all interns and residents.
The AAVMC calculated the mean and median for this data. Additionally, regional
average means and medians for each were calculated.
SPSSTM 22 was used to produce the
calculations presented below.
The AAVMC survey defines
were defined as individuals involved in a one year flexible clinical rotation
in veterinary medicine beyond the professional degree. The internship provides
practical experience in applying knowledge gained during formal professional
education and offers the opportunity for recent graduates to obtain additional
esidents as veterinarians involved
a three or more year advanced training program in a specialty area in
This training may
or may not lead to a specialty board certification and may or may not be
embedded into a graduate program.
During the 2014-2015 academic year, there were 315 interns in
post-DVM training programs at the US colleges of veterinary medicine.
Intern salaries ranged from $22,500 to
$38,360; the average intern was paid $26,572. The median salary was $26,142.
There were 978 residents in training programs at the US colleges
of veterinary medicine during the 2014-2015 academic year, and the average
resident salary was $32,707. The median salary was $31,908. Reported salaries
ranged from $0 to $54,774.
Although internships are traditionally a one year program,
the survey revealed 4 (1.3%) interns are in a second year of training. The
number of residents are distributed across 5 years, as some trainees remained
in programs beyond the traditional three years.
The distribution of residents by year is in Figure 1.
Of the 353 residency positions available
through the AAVC matching program, 317 are now filled with resident trainees at
US colleges of veterinary medicine. Second year residents comprised the largest
group of trainees with 353 individuals participating in programs housed within
Numerous factors may impact the distribution of salaries for
residents including regional economies and what year a trainee is in his or her
In an effort to explain some
of the disparities in intern and resident salaries, regional and residency year
distributions were calculated.
institutions were broken into four regions (Northeast, South, Midwest, and
West) as designated by the U.S. Census Bureau3.
Weighted regional distributions
were calculated using the number of interns or residents in a region.
Colleges in the Midwest trained the largest number of
interns at 37%, followed by colleges in the South, where 1 in 3 interns were in
training programs. The highest mean intern salary was found in the Northeast ($28,849),
followed closely by the West ($27,454).
distribution of intern salaries across regions can be found in Table 1.
The total number of interns has grown substantially since
In 2013, 231 interns
were in training programs housed within US colleges of veterinary medicine; comparatively
in 2015, AAVMC members reported 315 interns in program, an increase of 36.4%.
Nationally, salaries have increased marginally, though greater variance can be
seen when looking across the regions.
Intern salaries in the Northeast have increase by more than 10%;
however, in the South, where salaries remain the lowest, interns have only seen
a 4.7% increase in salaries over the last two years.
Colleges in the Midwest also have the highest percentage of
the nation’s residents at 32%. The West and Northeast have fewer colleges and
as a result train fewer residents, 18.7% and 17.9% respectively. The remaining
30.8% of residents can be found in colleges in the South.
Although the Midwest trains the most residents, the region reported
the lowest average resident salary at $30,272, while colleges in the West
reported the highest average and median salary at $38,177 (Table 2). The
regionalized veterinary resident salary trends mimic national salary trends with
workers in the Midwest and South earning less than workers in the Northeast or
The total number of residents has modestly decreased since
the publication of similar data in 2013.
The total number of residents increased by 1.5%, or 963 to 978, since
the 2012-2013 academic year. The average resident salary has also increased
approximately 9.8%5, though some of the increase may be attributable
to changes in the data collection methodology.
Salaries increase modestly as residents progress through
First year residents
earn an average salary of $32,083; by the third year, salaries increase by only
7.5% to $34,536 (Table 3). When looking at salaries by residency year and by
region, there is greater salary growth in residency programs that are longer
than 3 years.
Within the Northeast,
residents in the third year of the program will see an average of 4.6% in total
growth in annual salary during their training.
Comparatively, residency programs in the Midwest, South and West, which
include a number of 4 year training programs as well as two reported 5 year
residents, have greater salary growth than that seen in the Northeast.
Salaries across these regions increase from
7.0% to 15.9% between the first and fourth year of training.
Over the last two years, the total number of interns and residents
at the US colleges of veterinary medicine has increased modestly; their
salaries have also modestly increased during this time. The regional location
of the advanced training program appears to influence the average salary paid
The AAVMC maintains the most current information concerning
residents specifically working at schools and colleges of veterinary medicine
in the United States. The data provided here augments other data sources
relating to salaries earned by recent DVM graduates.
1Shepherd, A., Pikel, L. Employment, starting
salaries, and educational indebtedness of year-2013 graduates of US veterinary
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
2012 Oct 2013;243(7): 983-987.
and Residency Matching Program.
Internship and Residency Matching Program. American Association of
Veterinary Clinicians, 2014. Web. 14 Sept. 2015.
3Census Regions and Divisions of the United
States. Washington, DC: U.S. Census Bureau. 2015 [cited 14 Sept. 2015].
Available from: http://www.census.gov/geo/maps-data/maps/pdfs/reference/us_regdiv.pdf.
4Greenhill, Lisa M. "Resident &
Intern Salaries at U.S. Schools and Colleges of Veterinary Medicine."
Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, Feb. 2013. [cited 14 Sept.
2015]. Available from: /Public-Data/Resident-and-Intern-Salaries.aspx.
5DeNavas-Walt C, Proctor B. Income,
Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2013. Washington,
DC: United States Census Bureau; 2014 Sept p. 1–72. Report No.: P60-249. [cited
14 Sept. 2015]. Available from: http://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2014/demo/p60-249.pdf.
For additional information, please contact Lisa M. Greenhill at firstname.lastname@example.org.