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Chairs of the RCVS Fellowship Credentials Panel specification 2024

Background summary

1. The Fellowship of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) has three routes for veterinary surgeons who have demonstrated significant contributions to clinical practice, to the profession or to veterinary science.  The main objective of the Fellowship is to advance veterinary standards for the benefit of the veterinary profession, animal health and welfare, and the public. 

2. The Fellowship is governed by the Fellowship Board which will comprise the Chair, a Vice-Chair, three Credentials Panel Chairs, a Chair to the Fellowship Science Advisory Panel (FSAP), a Projects and Engagement Officer, an officer of the RCVS and a lay observer from RCVS Council.  Each Credentials Panel Chair will co-ordinate a team from the 30-member (approx.) Credentials Panel.

3. The College is seeking to elect experienced veterinary professionals to serve as Chairs of the Credentials Panel.

4. The advertised position provides an opportunity for highly experienced veterinary professionals to make an important contribution to improving the College’s capability to make more of the collective knowledge and experience of its members.

Location and reporting arrangements

5. Credentials Panel Chairs will co-ordinate and oversee a review of Fellowship applications, chair any required appropriate panel meetings and work with the other Credentials Panel Chairs and the Chair of the Fellowship Board.  The Credentials Panel consists of three sub areas based upon the three routes to Fellowship: Meritorious Contributions to Knowledge (MCK), Meritorious Contributions to the Clinical Practice (MCCP), and Meritorious Contributions to the Profession (MCP). 


6. Post-holders can claim a loss of earnings allowance, and reasonable expenses will be reimbursed.

Scope of the post

7. Chairs of the Credentials Panel should be high profile individuals who can make informed assessments of applicants within the relevant panel area, chair any required appropriate panel meetings.  Chairs would co-ordinate and oversee a review of each application, within their panel area, by at least three Panel members.  Chairs will ultimately list all the applicants that meet or exceed the required criteria within their Panel area after assessment and make appropriate recommendations to the Fellowship Board.

8. Panel Chairs will report to the Chair of the Fellowship Board.

9. Credentials Panel Chair appointments will be for a period of 3 years starting in November 2024.  Membership may be renewed for a further period if the incumbent wishes to seek re-election.

Specific tasks

10. Co-ordinate and oversee a review of each application, within their panel area, by at least three Panel members and chair at least two meetings with the panel during the assessment process.

11. Serve on the Fellowship Board which will meet every 3 months and contribute to overall Fellowship decision making.

12. Panel Chairs will submit a list of provisionally successful Fellowship candidates to the Fellowship Board for consideration and approval.

Person specification

13. Experienced and high-profile veterinary professional who has made a significant contribution to clinical practice, to the profession or to veterinary science.  Candidates must ideally be existing RCVS Fellow or possess direct and pertinent experience in evaluating top-tier applications and managing a team of assessors.

14. A strong familiarity with committee governance.

15. Ideally has experience of serving on credentials panels, awarding bodies and/or nominating committees.

16. Experience of reviewing applications/nominations for professional recognition/awards.

17. Enthusiasm for the advancement of veterinary medicine/science and the recognition of achievement in the veterinary profession.

18. Ability to work to deadlines.

19. Ability to apply good diplomacy skills and behave with probity.

20. Excellent communication skills.

21. Applicants are expected to demonstrate a steadfast commitment to fostering equality, diversity, and inclusion, actively incorporating these principles into their approach to the role.