Hanna Wachtel recently joined the faculty of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine as a clinical instructor of emergency medicine.  

 As a clinical instructor, Wachtel will be working with third- and fourth- year veterinary students and seeing emergency cases at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital (VTH). 

When she was in veterinary school, Wachtel completed as many rotations at the veterinary medical teaching hospital as she could because she valued being able to interact with clients and having the guidance of clinical instructors when thinking through cases and communicating with clients. As an instructor, she wants her students to get that same quality, hands-on experience.  

"I am really excited to work with students and build a strong foundation. I want to be there for students and encourage them to practice techniques now while they have someone helping them. Practicing medicine the first year out of school is scary no matter how prepared they are, but I want them to feel as confident as they can." 

After completing her doctor in veterinary medicine degree at University of California, Davis, Wachtel completed a one year, emergency-focused rotating internship at a private practice in Arizona. She practiced for about six years at a multi-specialty private practice in Arizona, followed by a year in South Carolina doing emergency and urgent care relief work.  

"With emergency medicine, you get to see all kinds of cases — you never know what's going to come through the door, and it's always something different and exciting,” said Wachtel.   

Wachtel is excited to take advantage of the hiking, biking, and other outdoor activities southwestern Virginia has to offer. She grew up in a small university town in California but has spent many years living in big cities, so moving to Blacksburg has been a breath of fresh air.  

Written by Sarah Boudreau M.F.A. '21, a writer with the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine.


Andrew Mann
Director of Communications and Marketing