Saskatchewan Invests $13.2 Million For Veterinary Medicine Training

The Government of Saskatchewan is providing $13.2 million to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) in 2024-25, representing a $667,000 increase over last year. This funding will support high-quality veterinary medicine education in the province as well as government’s commitment to subsidize 25 training seats for Saskatchewan students. 

“We continue to see a rising demand for veterinary services in the province and they are a key support for our growing economy,” Advanced Education Minister Gordon Wyant said. “This is a priority investment for Advanced Education that supports the continued implementation with five new seats, bringing the total now to 25 seats, that are available annually for Saskatchewan students.” 

The WCVM is an internationally-recognized centre for veterinary education, research and clinical expertise that is located on the University of Saskatchewan campus in Saskatoon. Based on an interprovincial agreement with three western provinces, WCVM annually accepts an allotted number of applicants from Saskatchewan, Manitoba and British Columbia. 

“Western Canada needs more veterinarians and, with support from the provincial government, USask will assist in meeting that need,” University of Saskatchewan President Peter Stoicheff said. “The Government of Saskatchewan’s increased funding for the WCVM has already helped boost the number of Saskatchewan students enrolled in veterinary medicine. More graduates will improve access to veterinary services in communities across Saskatchewan and the country.”

Five of these seats are designated for students who are likely to work in rural or mixed animal practices in the province following graduation. This designation encourages graduates to consider agriculture-focused veterinary careers. Saskatchewan has a diverse livestock industry driven by cattle and hog production and is the second-largest beef cattle herd in Canada, exporting $207 million worth of live cattle in 2023.

“Animal health and welfare is a top priority for farms across the province,” Agriculture Minister David Marit said. “By allocating seats for students who are interested in working in rural areas, we ensure the livestock industry have access to the top-quality veterinary services they need closer to home.”

“The college’s agriculture-focused seats help to ensure that more rural Saskatchewan students with livestock experience will consider veterinary medicine as a future career,” Western Canadian Veterinary Students’ Association president-elect and current student from North Battleford Garret Beatch said. “If you are already familiar with the agriculture industry and rural practice, it is an easier choice to make.” 

A range of initiatives are enhancing the availability of veterinary services in rural Saskatchewan. The Saskatchewan Loan Forgiveness for Veterinarians and Veterinary Technologists Program forgives up to $20,000 in Saskatchewan student loan debt for graduates who practice in rural and underserved areas. 

For more information about the WCVM, visit:

(Government of Saskatchewan news release)

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