The food may be better, the weather may be better, but how does VN training on the European Continent measure up to the home-grown variety? There's only one way to find out for sure, by experiencing it at first hand.

Veterinary nursing is a dynamic occupation with lots of interesting development going on across the EU – as those attending the recent Vetnnet conference in the Netherlands will have discovered. VN training centres, and students, can be a part of this by applying for a mobility grant from the Leonardo da Vinci Foundation. It has funds available to enable further education students, and staff, to visit EU countries and gain work experience in a practice or college.

While European colleges use these funds to widen the experience of their students, colleges (and employers) in the UK are very slow to take advantage, which means that funds are readily available and a bid would almost certainly be successful. The funding covers organisational costs (such as a preparatory visit), cultural and language preparation, travel and subsistence. A placement overseen by an ACOVENE – accredited school of veterinary nursing – could count towards RCVS training time.

For more information, see under ‘Mobility Projects'. Please also contact the RCVS VN Department if you are arranging an EU placement for your student VNs.

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Meanwhile, many European VN students are interested in experiencing practice over here. Such exchanges are a good way of gaining insights into different ways of working and sharing good practice, and could be the basis of some excellent CPD for your team.

If you are interested in hosting exchange students or VNs from overseas at your college or practice, you need to ensure they are properly registered.

European students should be registered as temporary students with a UK college and enrolled with the RCVS. It's not a difficult process – in fact, Groenhorst College in the Netherlands has just arranged for a group of its students to see practice here.

Provided that their overseas qualification is recognised, EU-qualified veterinary nurses may temporarily register for a short period to cover activity such as an exchange visit. They should contact the RCVS Registration Department for advice at either or on 020 7202 0739.

• VOL 25 • No10 • October 2010 • Veterinary Nursing Journal