CPIT graduate first New Zealand Veterinary Nurse of the Year

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02 Dec 2013

The New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association (NZVNA), in conjunction with Hill’s Pet nutrition, launched the award this year to honour “the highly skilled professionals who are an essential part of any veterinary practice”.

In winning the award, the NZVNA described Tania as a “highly motivated and enthusiastic nurse, who provides exceptional care towards patients and empathy to their owners.”

Tania, 30, says she was “humbled and excited” to win the award.

“I never expected to make the final three with the skills of the Vet Nurses around the country, so that phone call I got from Jan Bedford, from Hills, was unexpected,” she says.

“It means a lot to be the first Hills Vet Nurse of the Year.”

Tania Fernandez won vet nurse of the year 

Tania Fernandez accepts the Hill's Pet Nutrition Vet Nurse of the Year award.

Tania always wanted to be a vet nurse, realising early on in life that she enjoyed helping people and pets.

“I went to a clinic when I was in high school to see what they did day to day and loved it. I found out what grades I needed to get in school to get in and as soon as I could I applied for the course.”

Tania studied her full time certificate in vet nursing at CPIT in 2002, which she describes as an “awesome year” which she would “always remember”.

After graduating, Tania began giving back to CPIT by sharing her knowledge. In 2006, she began helping teach surgery and tutorial sessions and three years later she also helped in the Pathway vet nursing class.

Tania now works as the practice manager at Marshall and Pringle Vetcare in Christchurch.

She can’t wait to help out the vet nurse profession by talking to groups about what is involved with her job.

“The profession is growing, both in skill level and with new technology and drugs coming in and out of the market,” she says.

“I think every Vet Nurse is always learning and we have to adapt for each individual pet, as no two pets are the same.”

Jan Bedford, Vet Nurse Manager at Hill's Pet Nutrition, says it is “wonderful to see veterinary nurses receive the recognition they deserve but sometimes don’t get".