RCVS Leadership Initiative

Inspired by the Vet Futures and VN Futures projects, the RCVS Leadership initiative seeks to meet our strategic ambition ‘to become a Royal College with leadership… at its heart, and support this creatively and with determination.’

The initiative is focused around three areas of work: 

Vet with stethoscope

1. Leadership for everyone

Promoting the importance of self-reflection and the development of leadership skills as key aspects of veterinary professionals’ continuing education and providing the resources to help support such development.

2. Leading the profession

Ensuring that, as an organisation, the RCVS is an exemplar of leadership development and is fit to lead the professions.

3. Tomorrow's leaders

Highlighting the diverse range of leadership development opportunities for veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses, the roles and positions these could lead to, and the impact they could have on the future of the professions.

To learn more about RCVS Leadership and the work we will undertake to meet the initiatives aims, please take a look at the RCVS Leadership Three-Year Plan.


Edward Jenner Veterinary Leadership Programme

In autumn 2018, as part of our Leadership Initiative, we will be launching the Edward Jenner Veterinary Leadership Programme - a free-to-access online course for veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses.

The Programme has been developed in conjunction with the NHS Leadership Academy to encourage and support the development of everyday leadership skills for veterinary professionals, and is based on a version used in human medicine that over 55,000 people across the globe have accessed.

This gateway leadership development programme is suitable for all veterinary professionals and covers key concepts such as:

  • the importance of leadership in the veterinary setting, along with the art of good leadership and decision-making;
  • how to be a more confident and effective leader, and develop an inclusive leadership culture in your workplace;
  • active reflection and application of leadership skills to your professional life.

Here, Vice-President Amanda Boag, who is heading up RCVS Leadership Initiative, introduces the programme:



The programme will count towards veterinary surgeons' continuing professional development and those completing the course will be eligible to receive an award in Leadership Foundations from the NHS Leadership Academy.


Accompanying the course is an audio drama featuring veterinary professionals living in the fictional County of Glenvern. You can hear their stories unfold, and learn from and reflect on the issues and challenges they encounter in their day-to-day lives.

You can listen to the first two episodes of the audio drama below and then let us know what you think.

Please note the materials on Future Learn are still under development and the weblinks referred to in the audio drama episodes are not yet live.


What will the course look like?

The course will be hosted on the Open University’s Future Learn website. You can get a preview of what the course and the platform will look like in the following video [no audio].


Pilot Programme

Almost 550 vets and vet nurses have now signed up for a pilot of the Edward Jenner Veterinary Leadership Programme that will be running over the summer. This will provide us with vital feedback to refine the course prior to its launch in Autumn.


Find out more

For more information on the RCVS Leadership Initiative and the Edward Jenner Veterinary Leadership Programme, please contact Anthony Roberts, Director of Leadership and Innovation at a.roberts@rcvs.org.uk.