2019 School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year Winner: Heidi Rasmussen


From an early age, Heidi developed a deep love and appreciation for animals. As she grew older, this soon developed into a strong desire to not only provide sick or injured animals with the best care possible, but also equip owners with the knowledge necessary to better understand the needs of their own pets. Eager to finally step foot in a vet clinic to understand what a potential daily routine may be like in the future saw Heidi complete a week of work placement in 2017 at Direct Vet Services.

Upon its completion, Heidi’s motivation to continue learning in a practical environment greatly increased. It was not long before her career advisor introduced her to the Certificate III in Companion Animal Services school-based traineeship which she then commenced in 2018 alongside her year 11 VCE studies. During her studies, Heidi was having to travel two hours both ways to get to Geelong and also had to work on Saturdays to build up her placement hours.

Being awarded the highest level of achievement for year 11 VCE English, Biology, and Chemistry, as well as the Trainee of the Year through The Gordon and the Victorian School Based Trainee of the Year, confirmed that the strenuous situation had assisted with her ability to correctly allocate time. Heidi has now been given the opportunity to mentor students in the same way she was. This includes delegating tasks throughout the day, as well as training students to complete clinic procedures, such as wrapping surgical kits and drapes, preparing anaesthetic charts, and client interaction.

Heidi demonstrates outstanding leadership skills and is always a shining example of respect, empathy and compassion, not only towards her patients, but her fellow class mates and co-workers alike. She shows a level of empathy and care for animals and such a gentle understanding for each and every one.