010: How To Form Relationships That Will Open Up Opportunities w/ Clara Goh


We’ve all heard stories about how an influential mentor changed someone’s life and career path entirely, and we’ve got another one for you today. Today’s guest has had a few twists and turns in her veterinary career and they all came from as a result of mentors who believed in her before she believed in herself.

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Show Notes: 

Clara Goh is an Australian born veterinary surgeon working in Colorado who has quite a few titles under her belt including small animal surgeon, surgical oncology fellowship at CSU, and is currently a faculty member at CSU in orthopedic surgery service. This is one busy woman to say the least! She’s also someone that I’ve known and looked up to for many years, which is why this episode is so important to me.

We dive into how mentorship can change your life both professionally and personally and why giving back, in the same way, is an important step in our careers, how compassion makes you a better person and vet, and how to balance your life when you’re exhausted. We also got into the nitty-gritty of how to build the relationships you will need to succeed and how networking with heart can make you stand out in a crowded field.

How do you find balance between life and work? What is your happy place that you escape to when needed?

In this episode:

  • The importance of both accepting mentorship during your schooling and giving it after you’re established
  • How to cultivate compassion and why it’s essential
  • Application tips and tricks for a surgical residency
  • What life is like as a faculty surgeon
  • Life/Work Balance: How to make yourself a priority even when exhausted


“Sometimes it does take a mentor to actually see that you have that potential and recognize it. And, I think for me, that’s what I try to do with not just my residents that I’m training, but also the students that I see coming through.” (16:18)

“Just be yourself! You don’t need to go out of your way to outperform the other students or anything like that. Just be yourself and do a good job and a majority of the time when you feel like your doing your best for your patients, for the clients, for other rotation mates, and being a team player that will show through. And, that’s all going to reflect positively on that letter at the end of the day.” (27:19)

“As veterinarians, that’s not something we always do great, finding that balance sometimes and not pushing ourselves to the limit. I think it is to recognize in yourself, what it is that helps me to recharge your battery, even when you’re down to two percent.” (35:09)


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John Arnold