Volunteer Spotlight: Sydni Martin

A photo of a person named Sydni Martin in a vet clinic kissing a kitty client

How long have you volunteered with NOMV?

January 2021

What’s your role(s) with NOMV?

Education Committee Member, Ambassador Developer, New England NOMV Ambassador

What’s your professional role?

Certified Veterinary Technician at Potter League Pets in Need Veterinary Clinic

What’s your favorite thing about volunteering for NOMV? 

I love being a part of all of the incredible and important changes that are currently happening and will continue to happen in vet med. I love the unquestionable, understanding, and immediate support I get from Bri, and everyone else in this organization. I’ve loved watching NOMV blow up and go viral. I love going into meetings with people I’ve never met before, and seeing so many other people, so many other groups, committees, and subcommittees, working on hundreds of different things to make NOMV the best and most impactful organization it can be!

Why do you volunteer for NOMV?

I am someone who has been through extreme trauma and always struggled with my mental health. I love my job and I love being in this field. It’s what I was put on our Earth to do. Being a CVT for a non-profit low-cost hospital, I see evidence daily of the desperate need for and importance of making a change to our industry as a whole. Veterinary medicine is a tough tough business, but I think that through education, altering mindsets, expectations, and standards, and providing support to the veterinary community, we will actually turn this field around and make some big important changes. And save lives. After all, isn’t that really our goal in vet med? To save lives and minimize/alleviate suffering? That refers to us too, friends!! We need to take care of ourselves like we do our patients!

What’s a fun fact about you?

I was the 2018 Rhode Island Vet Tech of the year, the year after I graduated and passed my boards!

Where are you located?

Rhode Island

Why are you committed to the NOMV mission?

Is this even a real question!? Everything that NOMV stands for is everything that I want for the veterinary community, far and wide. I want the mental health aspect of this field to be thoroughly discussed and explained in vet school and vet tech programs. This is not something many newbies are prepared for, but it is so so important! I want to go to work every day, with the mindset that I am here to help animals and their humans to the best of my ability with the time and resources I have and feel good about what I’ve done when I leave. I don’t want to go into work to get mentally and emotionally abused by clients and coworkers, alike. Of course, every day isn’t going to be sunshine and rainbows, but I at least want to be able to tell myself that we did our very best, and worked as a team toward that common goal. The NOMV mission is so important, and I want to do my part to work towards it in my own little way, every single day. Mental wellness is crucial to be able to do this job well, in the long term. I can’t be held responsible for other people’s attitudes or mindsets, but I can uphold my own, stay positive and supportive, and encourage others to do the same. Long-term sustainability is possible with a good support system!

What goals do you have for the future of your profession?

I want to see NOMV infiltrate every aspect of my job. I want the drama and shit-talking to stop. I want to support and respect my coworkers, and get that same support and respect back. I want to normalize the importance of bringing our mental health and well-being to the table. I want to normalize the importance of being selfish and taking days off without feeling guilty or receiving backlash. I want to lift others up, and encourage others to do the same. I want to teach, without feeling like the person I’m teaching doesn’t want or need to hear it. I want to learn! We are all ALWAYS learning, and that should NEVER stop because things are ALWAYS changing! I want to minimize burnout and abuse in the workplace. We are all in this together, and if we can’t get support from our own coworkers, who go through the same things we do on a daily basis, who can we expect to support us? Negativity and bullying in the workplace have got to stop, and this is what I will continue to strive for. Again, long-term sustainability IS possible with a good support system backing you and your team!

What are your aspirations within NOMV?

I want to first ensure I have enough time for my current committees (personal boundaries/time management for the win!), and then build a strong, bad-ass ambassador team, so I can support my community!