This internship is designed for a qualified veterinary graduate who wishes to gain more experience with exotic species.

The internship programme lasts one year and is particularly suitable if you are a recent graduate and wish to apply for a position in exotics practice or wish to pursue specialist training in future i.e. a three year Residency. The internship is coupled with a post graduate diploma in Veterinary Clinical Practice (PGDipVCP) and the successful applicant will be automatically enrolled in the course. The intern will be based at the Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital - the RVC's teaching hospital at the Camden campus, London.

Dates for 2024 Exotic Animal Internship applications

Not ready to apply for next year's internship?  Sign up to our mailing list to hear about future opportunities

To apply for the Exotic Animal you must meet the following requirements:

Member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (or eligible) RCVS.

You must be eligible for full Membership of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS). All applicants must be an MRCVS by the date the internship starts, and ideally by the date of application and interview. It is the applicant's responsibility to organise and pay for the annual membership fee.

Meet English language requirement 

You must be able to communicate clearly in English, both verbally and in writing. If you are not exempt from proving your English language proficiency, you must take an IELTS (Academic) test (or equivalent). 

We require an overall IELTS (Academic) score of 7.0, with no element below 6.5. A certified copy of your IELTS test result should be submitted with your application. The test result must have been obtained within 2 years of the start date of the course.  Applications that do not satisfy these criteria will not be considered for shortlisting.

Please see a list of English qualifications we will accept as alternatives to IELTS.

Foreign language applicants are encouraged to practice as a veterinary surgeon in the UK for at least one year prior to application.

Twelve months experience as a qualified veterinarian

A minimum of twelve months experience as a qualified veterinary surgeon in a small animal practice in the UK is essential.

Overseas Students

Students classifed as "Overseas" with regards to tuition fees are very welcome to apply for the internship. We are keen to find the best candidates regardless of their nationality and have had occasional Overseas interns. Candidates should note that funding models for this programme are weighted towards "Home" fee candidates, so when candidates are equal, internships will be offered to applicants eligible for "Home" fees. To help determine whether you would be eligible for "Home" fees please see the UKCISA's 'Who pays 'home' fees for higher education in England?' guide found here.

What essential attributes do you need to join the programme?       

  • Be a highly motivated recently qualified veterinary surgeon          
  • Keen to  develop your veterinary skills, experience and knowledge          
  • Willing to work hard        
  • Ability to cope under pressure        
  • Positive attitude at all times        
  • Great teamwork skills        
  • Work effectively and efficiently with a range of people from support staff, veterinary students to Professors        
  • Patience to teach and guide veterinary undergraduate students  

Admissions Policy & Procedures

Further information on the recruitment procedure can be found here.

The programme begins with an introduction and orientation week. The remainder of the year will involve working within the Exotics Service, predominantly at the Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital (Camden). You will gain a range of experience working with exotic species including rabbits, small mammals, reptiles and birds. You will also participate in the weekend and out of hours (OOH) rota.

Visiting the RVC Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital

We recommend that applicants visit prior to application.

To arrange a visit, please contact Joanna Hedley  with your preferred date. If you are unable to visit you are still encouraged to apply to the programme. You will be able to visit the facilities if you are invited for interview.


If you would like to know more, the following links may be useful:

If you have any specific queries, please contact  Dr. Joanna Hedley (

For General Internship application enquiries, please contact the Admissions Team (

Annual Leave

The total annual leave entitlement is 20 days inclusive of bank holidays. Further details can be found in the Code of Practice (see below).


The Post Graduate Diploma in Veterinary Clinical Practice (PG Dip VCP) has been aligned to the internship programme and will be assessed by case reports and work placed based assessments (WPBA). Constructive feedback will be provided both informally and formally throughout the year. Your clinical progress will be assessed on an individual basis and feedback given on an informal basis every three months based on your performance during rotations. Each intern has a formal appraisal six months after the start of the internship i.e. half-way through. This is intended to track progress, and to ensure that all learning objectives are completed by the end of the internship. Further information can be found in Course Assessment and Award Regulations 2019/20:  PGDip in Veterinary Clinical Practice.


Information on accommodation can be found under Funding Options.

Code of Practice

All interns must adhere and abide by the Royal Veterinary College's Code of Practice for Interns & Residents and can be found under Essential Information in the Graduate School.


Information on the current stipend can be found under Funding Options.


You may find these FAQs helpful.

Two Exotic Internships are available each year. The intern/student will receive advanced training and experience in exotic species, including rabbits, reptiles, small mammals and birds at the exotic referral services at the Beaumont Sainsbury Animal Hospital (Camden). The Internship usually commences in June, and runs for 52 weeks. 

Dates for 2024 Exotic Animal Internship applications

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to attend interviews during the above dates. We endeavour to inform those who have been short listed for interview within 2 weeks before the interview date. The interview typically lasts 20-30 minutes.  It is designed to test the applicant’s understanding of the role and function of an intern, and their motivation for pursuing an internship.  

For an informal discussion about these internships, please contact: Dr. Joanna Hedley (;  General queries:    

Please see How to Apply  for more details on the application process, but if you have a specific query you should contact the Admissions team on the above email.

Only online application forms submitted through our system will be considered.

Please ensure that your English qualification meets our requirements in time for applying.

Tuition Fees

All Clinical Training Internships are fully funded.

  • As an intern you will be awarded a scholarship for your fees.
  • A stipend will be paid monthly in arrears. Currently the stipend is £17,200 per annum (subject to review)

The tuition fees (which are covered by a scholarship) are as follows:

Year commencing course Home Tuition Fees including Island Fees (Channel Islands & Isle of Man) International Fees
2021/22 £9,000 £27,380
2022/23 £9,000 £28,750

Tuition fee amounts are subject to increase each academic year.

Funding Options

Clinical Training Internships

All Clinical Training Internships are fully funded. 

  • As an intern you will be awarded a scholarship for your fees.
  • A stipend will be paid monthly in arrears. Currently the stipend is £19,000 per annum (subject to review)
  • A single occupancy room in a shared (with others interns) house on-site is available for the duration of the internship for RVC based interns. No pets are allowed in the accommodation.

Top of page