For my placement, I travelled to Asheville, North Carolina, USA, to participate in a spay and neuter clinic at the ASPCA Spay/Neuter Alliance. It is a high-volume spay and neuter facility, which primarily sterilizes shelter animals and feral cats. I am a final year veterinary student, and in going I hoped to become a more confident and experienced veterinary surgeon. It was an incredible experience to get instruction from these vets that are so experienced in what they do. I got to do around twenty spay and castrate surgeries, and learn the most effective surgical techniques from the staff there. I was initially worried I might be less experienced than the other students that were doing the program, but there were students with all different levels of experience. I got to see first-hand how veterinary professionals dealt so efficiently with such a high throughput of animals, and made the surgeries as safe as possible with the limited resources they had available. I also got to visit a local animal shelter during my visit there, which provided me with my first glimpse into to the fascinating world of shelter medicine. My confidence level operating on dogs and cats has increased exponentially since my trip. But in addition to this, I got to experience life for two weeks in the American South, which is somewhere I had never been before. I was housed with 19 other veterinary student externs in dormitories, and we spent our spare time hiking in the mountains around the Asheville area, and exploring the city. I ate fried green tomatoes and okra for the first time, and both were delicious. The scenery in Asheville is stunning, and I made great friends that I am sure I will be in contact with for a long time. I am so happy that I decided on this placement, and I could not have been happier with how it turned out.