Young Vet of the Year Award 2019 Finalist: What being a Finalist means to me

Posted on October 27, 2019 by Emily Craven

For me this is a whole new experience, I have never sought publicity, recognition, awards, or anything else, and I find myself shocked to be in this highly privileged position. All I have ever wanted is to do my best, both for my clients (both the animals and the farmers) and for myself, and that is the motivation that drives me forward and gets me out of bed in the morning. Nothing gives me more pleasure than getting good outcomes for a client, be that a successful caesarean or getting that complicated export signed off, or seeing an improvement in a set of data analysis.

When you love what you do

Emily Craven blogBetween life and work, things are not always easy: there are no shortcuts to success and I am not afraid of hard work. I think it helps when you truly love what you do, it's easy to blur those lines between work and non-work, and enjoy life in the farming community! I think we are incredibly fortunate that we have been granted an opportunity to have a career that we can enjoy. Most of us have to work, but not everyone gets the chance to choose a job that can be exactly what they want to do and so fulfilling. Granted some days our jobs are mundane, granted some days I’d like nothing more than to be indoors (touching steel gates and crushes during the Beast from the East springs to mind!), but on the whole we are so lucky that we are paid to do something so special. Although, even mundane can be fun - we do meet some incredibly interesting clients and many of the conversations had over the course of a TB test/at 3am over a cup of tea after a calving are some of the best! 

Taking opportunities

I perceive myself just to be a normal vet with a passion and am proud to be a vet in first opinion practice. I have never had a plan and I cannot tell you where I’ll be in 5 years time but I will take opportunities as they come. I have always been involved in the Bath and West Show and they sponsored me to involvement with the Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth. These opportunities have given me the confidence and the network to travel, and the connection with a lot of my showing clients. This has all helped with export work and so it goes on. I enjoyed mobility and this has lead me to working on the clinical board at Origin, and I am now in charge of the mobility group at Vet Partners level. Enjoying dairy work and offering to help a neighbouring practice has given me the Clinical Director role that I have now, and the privilege of working with a super team who are totally compatible with my beliefs and values. 

I saw a great quote on social media the other day: ‘there is no elevator to success… you have to take the stairs'. Now I’m still climbing, but thank you to BVA and my nominator, you’ve driven a checkmate and a chance for me to stop and think. I hope I haven’t reached the pinnacle of my career as I want to keep driving forward but the first floor check-in means so much to me. My grandfather was a very special vet in his time and I really hope he’s looking down and thinking ‘she’s done alright!'. Having also got exceptionally grumpy about my 30th birthday this year, I want to enjoy the moment and relish what might be the last time I am ever called young!

BVA Young Vet of the Year Award 2019, supported by Zoetis

Emily Craven is one of the three finalists for the BVA Young Vet of the Year Award 2019, supported by Zoetis,along with Andreia Dias and Amy Barstow. The award aims to highlight recent graduate vets who make a difference. The winner of the 2019 award will be announced at the BVA Gala Dinner at London Vet Show on the evening of 14 November 2019, tickets can be purchased by booking online or emailing

Keep an eye on the BVA website for more details about the BVA Young Vet of the Year Award 2020, supported by Zoetis.

Emily Craven

Written by Emily Craven

Emily Craven is a clinical director in farm practice. She has recently undertaken important work looking in to lameness and mobility in cattle.