IVSA Switzerland, Bern
IVSA Bern was probably founded many years ago. Sadly, the students working with it left school and no one came after. After a few years of inactivity, IVSA Bern got reactivated during the Symposium in Taiwan 2017 - we are very happy to be part of it again. However, in Bern IVSA isn't widely known yet, but we are doing everything to improve this and to build up an active MO.
Currently, we are five active members:
Sophia Jenni is the current president of IVSA Bern. She is very passionate about horses and spends many weekends participating in show jumping competitions. However, she would prefer to work with companion or farm animals.
Christa Trachsel is responsible for the people going abroad for an externship, as EO outgoing. She grew up on a farm an therefore knows plenty of things about farm animals. Furthermore, Christa is very much into the swiss reality TV-dating show "Bachelor".
Annina Müller is the current EO incoming, so the contact person for everyone who likes to come to Bern. In her spare lessons at university, she enjoys running through the beautiful forests around Bern (preferably as an unicorn). As a veterinarian, she would enjoy working in a mixed clinics for both farm and companion animals.
Mirjam Laska makes sure that there is always the correct amount of money on our IVSA-bank account. She is a very passionate climber and frequently breaks records at national running competitions.
Sibylle Grosjean is now in her 5th and last year at the veterinary faculty in Bern. She decided to specify in farm animals and enjoys it a lot. For our IVSA team, she is an important link to both the clinics and the students board.
The faculty of veterinary medicine is part of the University of Bern. Founded in 1834, it has nowadays more than 17'500 students on 8 faculties, we are one of them. In Switzerland, it is only possible to study veterinary medicine in either Bern or Zurich. This was one of the reasons, why those to faculties fusioned in 2006 to the "Vetsuisse-Faculty".
In Bern, we have three modern clinics:
The clinic for companion animals was renovated a few years ago. It specialised in cats and dogs and has a team with almost 30 veterinarians and more than 40 nurses. During the day, the clinic is busy with interesting cases from all over Switzerland and during night, the emergency takes in all small animals in need. As students, we spend there a few nights every year to help out with the stationary patients and the emergencies during the evening and the night - a very interesting task.
The horse clinic has been reopened just last year and is very well equipped. There is enough space to take in more than 25 horses at once. During our studies, we help out in the evening, at night and also in the weekends.
The clinic for farm animals is split up into a clinic for ruminants and a pig clinic. In the ruminant clinic, animals (mostly cattle) are taken in for emergencies and well as bigger operations that cannot be done on a farm. Compared to the ruminants, the pig clinic keeps the pigs mostly for educational reason. As students, we spend a lot of time there practising different things that may be necessary later on, like examination, taking samples and so on.
The city of Bern
Bern is the capital of Switzerland - and a very special one. Unlike many other capitals, it is not the biggest city of the country and has no more than 150'000 inhabitans. The people of Bern are said to be quite slow. Until today, we still are not sure whether this is true or not, but we can say for sure that Bern is the least stressed city you can find. Everyone is spending their time drinking coffee (and beer of course) on one of the many squares of the city or relaxing in the beautiful parks - normally with a stunning view over either the whole city or even the Swiss Alps.
In summer, it gets even cooler: We bet you have never been to a capital that you can circle by swimming without getting some bacterial infection or frostbites - and you even see most of the important sights. The river "Aare" leads around the whole city in an agreable speed and you don't even need to move for it! If you don't like rivers, you can cool down in front of the government building by jumping between the trick fountains (together with 2938 children :) ). By the way, the square in front of the government building is turned into an ice skating rink in winter, which is pretty fun too.
The most famous building is probably the "Münster", a Swiss-reformed cathedral in the old town. The tower is 100 meters high - enough to get a great view over the whole city.
If we ever get enough of city life, it takes us not much more than 1.5 hours to get to Switzerlands most famous skiing areas - Adelboden for example. In summer, they are perfect for walking.
Bern - the name of our city - comes from the german word for "bear". Sadly, the swiss bears do not get as far as Bern yet, but since 1500, bears are kept in the city, in the so called "bear pit". This sounds - and was - pretty cruel. Luckily, it was renovated in the last few years and our bears get to enjoy a big and much more appropriate cage that goes all the way down to the river.
Apart from the bear pit (the name never changed), we have a small zoo where they keep many local animals. We visit it frequently while doing a group exchange.