Written by Karen E. Mosier
Heather Mandeville took three years of classes at the University of Saskatchewan from 1991-1994. In 1996, she completed her Medical Administrative Assistant course through the Saskatoon Business College. She started working on campus in July, 1996 in a 3-month CUPE term position in the Western College of Veterinary Medicine. In the fall, 1996, she moved to the College of Medicine where she worked in the Admissions Office initially as a clerical assistant for 8 years before moving to ASPA in November 2004. Heather remained in the College of Medicine until November 2010 when she accepted her current position as Manager of Admissions & Recruitment in the Western College of Veterinary Medicine.
Heather’s duties are split into two categories: recruitment and admissions. Concerning recruitment, her duties occur primarily in the fall, and include attending high school fairs in Saskatchewan and touring the main universities across the four western provinces. In terms of admissions, her responsibilities mainly occur from December through to July, and involve maintaining the WCVM admissions website and application form, processing applications, organizing interviews, and working with the Admissions Committee which oversees the entire admission process. She is also available throughout the year for one-on-one sessions advising potential students and unsuccessful applicants through in-person meetings, email or phone.
What Heather loves most about her job is meeting prospective students and seeing their passion to be veterinarians. Not only does she appreciate the diversity of the students applying, but also the endless career options available with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree. Heather gets satisfaction seeing students realize their dreams. Often, students will have several years of correspondence before gaining admission, and they will come by Heather’s office to meet face-to-face for the first time.
Heather credits her time spent as a student at the University of Saskatchewan as valuable. The ‘life experience’ helped her understand how the university works from a student perspective. During this time, Heather studied nursing and worked part-time 25
hours a week, so she can relate to the work-life balance issues and time management problems that many students struggle with.
Heather appreciates the benefits that being an ASPA member has to offer, including the bargaining team negotiating good wages and flexibility in working hours, so that members can make a good living and achieve a better “work-life balance”. Heather attributed her overall quality of life and standard of living to being an ASPA member. In addition, she continues to realize new benefits ASPA has to offer all the time with her daughter receiving financial support through the ASPA Tuition Reimbursement after completing her first year of studies at the U of S last year. Heather takes pride in being an ASPA member following in her late father’s footsteps (Wayne Loberg), who was an ASPA member for 30 years on campus. After 14 years of ASPA experience to date, she says it will be interesting to see what the future holds – perhaps one of her daughters might be an ASPA member too some day.
If Heather could give advice to other ASPA members, it would be to “make yourself knowledgeable about all the benefits that being an ASPA members offers”.