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The Veterinary Human Support Certificate provides education for animal related professionals on the four areas of Veterinary Social Work. 


This certificate program is for animal-related professionals who have some form of health related state registration or license (DVM, LVT, etc)

If one does not have a state registration or license, they may apply for the certificate if they meet one of the two criteria below. These applicants will need to have 2 letters of recommendation sent on their behalf on top of the standard application materials.

  • Animal related professional who has been in field 5+ years
  • Animal related professional with a bachelor degree in animal related field +2 years experience in field

Certificate Overview:

  • Modules: Online, self-paced, year-round availability
    • Social Work Values, Ethics, and History
    • Compassion Fatigue and Conflict Management 
    • Animal Related Grief and Bereavement 
    • Animal Assisted Interventions 
    • The Link Between Human and Animal Violence
    • Ethics and Moral Stress
    • Advanced Techniques for Human Engagement
    • Advanced Techniques for Human Management 
    • On boarding in Mental Health
  • Supervision Sessions: Online video conference, hosted once a year starting June 2020.
    • 7 sessions (All sessions required)
    • Mondays, 7-9pm (ET)
    • Progression of cases, with assignments
  • Keystone Project: Proposals can be submitted after completion of related modules
    • participants must complete a keystone project that requires at least 250 hours of service learning. This piece of the certificate requires participants to take their new knowledge and turn it into action. The keystone component is flexible and is designed to help participants develop relationships and begin the process of making their goals come into being.
  • Workshops: 3 workshops live in Knoxville, requiring 2-3 trips.
    • Emotional CPR workshop
      • End of July 2020
      • Sunday, Monday
    • Veterinary Human Support Intensive
      • End of July 2020
      • Right after Emotional CPR
      • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
    • 3-day International Veterinary Social Work Summit 
      • October, biennially (2020, 2022, 2024, 2026)
      • Final step in the certificate!

Disclaimer: Completion of this certificate does not qualify one to become a mental health professional. If you are interested in becoming a mental health professional, check out the Veterinary Social Work Certificate Program for University of Tennessee Master of Science in Social Work students.

Apply Now

Applications are accepted year round. You can apply any time. You will need a letter of intent, resume, and photo to complete this application. Veterinarians will need to submit a copy of their license. All other applicants will need to submit academic transcripts for their highest level of education completed. The review process takes 1-2 weeks once all materials are received.

If you have a question, click here to send us a message. Using this form to contact use will get a quicker response than email.


Frequently Asked Questions:

Once enrolled, how long do I have to complete the program?

This is a self-paced program! You can take up to 5-6 years to complete the certificate, though you can finish sooner.

When is payment due for the certificate program?

Participants purchase each individuals step in the program as they move through the program. If you want to work on a module, then you purchase the module when you are ready. It is pay as you go.

Is there a refund policy if I am no longer able to complete and online or face to face training?

Click here for our refund policy for our modules. Click here for our refund policy for face-to-face trainings.

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