Frequently Asked Questions

Question: What can I expect from the 2014 Annual Conference?

  • The Resident Review Workshop will take place on Thursday, October 9th beginning at 8:00 am.
  • NEW!  The Resident Review Workshop is FREE to all current VCS member RESIDENTS only.
  • NEW!  There are three pre-conference tours available to attendees.  Please visit the pre-conference tour page for more information.
  • The conference officially begins at 1:00 pm on Thursday afternoon.
  • The conference concludes with the Annual Awards Banquet on Saturday evening at the St. Louis Zoo.
  • There are NO sessions scheduled for Sunday


Question: What meals are provided at the conference?

  • NEW!  Abbott Animal Health will provide a breakfast for TECHNICIANS ONLY on Friday morning.  You must register for this.  All other attendees will receive a light continental breakfast in the Grand Foyer.
  • Amatheon Pharmaceuticals will provide a lunch for TECHNICIANS ONLY on Friday.  You must register for this.
  • NEW!  Aratana Therapeutics will sponsor a breakfast for all attendees on Saturday at 7 am.  This meal accompanies a sponsored presentation.  You must register for this.
  • NEW!  Abbott Animal Health will sponsor a lunch for all attendees on Saturday at 12 pm.  This meal accompanies a sponsored presentation.  You must register for this.
  • Mid-morning and afternoon food & beverage breaks each day are provided.
  • Light hors-d’oeuvres at the Welcome Reception and Poster Presentation Reception will be provided.
  • One ticket to the Awards Banquet on Saturday evening at the St. Louis Zoo is also included in your registration fee.  You must register for this.
  • Those who plan to attend the VCOG business meeting may purchase a lunch when registering.  You must register and pay for this.


Question:  What can I expect at this year’s Awards Banquet?  This year, guests who attend the Awards Banquet will enjoy a demonstration and meal at the St. Louis Zoo.  After visiting the new Sea Lion habitat, we will hold our Resident Awards ceremony, enjoy dinner at the Living World located inside the Zoo and return to the hotel.


Question:  What time does the conference end?  The abstract presentations will end at 4:30 pm on Saturday, October 11th and the VCS Membership Meeting will follow.  The Awards Banquet takes place that evening at 6:15 pm when we load the buses and take a short ride to the venue.  There are no sessions scheduled for Sunday.  You can find a complete conference schedule here.


Question:  I have been selected to present a poster at the conference.  When can I hang my poster?  You will be able to hang your poster anytime after 12 pm on Thursday. Posters must be removed by 3 pm on Saturday. Your name will be on the board in which you are to hang your poster.  You must be present at the Poster Reception on Friday evening at 6:30 pm to discuss your poster.  Your poster must be 3 feet wide by 4 feet tall (vertical) so that two posters can fit on one board.


Question:  I have been selected to present my abstract orally.  How do I submit my presentation?  All presenters will receive an email that includes an individualized link in which to submit your oral presentation.  All presentations must be uploaded by October 7th at 11:59 pm.


Question:  I want to attend the VCOG business meeting during the lunch hour but do not wish to purchase a lunch.  Can I do that?  Yes, you may attend and not purchase a lunch.


Question: How many CE hours will I receive by attending this conference and when will I receive the certificate?  Please see the Continuing Education page for more information.



Question: I want to register as a VCS member but haven’t paid my 2014 dues yet. What should I do?  If you are a VCS member who has not renewed your dues for 2014, we recommend that you do so prior to  registering for the conference so that you can take advantage of the VCS member rates.  To do so, visit and log in to your account using your email and password, select the online store, and then select your membership category and proceed to payment. You may also call Sandi Strother at 573-823-8497.  Please note: If you have been a VCS member and your membership has expired, and you register for the conference using the VCS member rate, you should renew your membership prior to the conference or you will be asked to do so when you check in at the registration table.  This will simply make you a 2014 member, however, you will still be asked to pay your 2015 dues by January 1st.  Those  people who have never been a member of VCS and join  after September 1st will be a member for the remainder of 2014 and all of 2015 and will be able to register for the 2014 conference using the member registration rate.


Question: I am a Resident who was selected to present an oral or poster abstract.  What registration fee do I use? You will use the VCS Member Resident Presenter fee of $125 as long as you are a current VCS member.  Non-member Residents must use the non-member Resident rate.  Only CURRENT Residents who will be presenting in the Resident category on Thursday afternoon, and thus in the Resident competition, are eligible to use this special rate.  Residents should wait until AFTER they receive notification of their assignment before registering for the conference.


Question: I have recently completed my residency (within the past year) and have been accepted to present my abstract in the Resident category.  What conference registration rate do I use?  Because you are no longer a Resident, you are required to pay the Professional registration rate for the conference.  You are still eligible to present in the Resident category and accept one of the Resident Awards if your abstract is selected as a winner.


Question:   I am a student whose abstract has been accepted in the oral or poster category.  Which registration rate do I use?  Students selected to present a poster or oral abstract must register for the conference paying the STUDENT rate only.  These abstracts will NOT be presented during the Resident presentation time periods.


Question:   I plan to register on site.  What will that cost?  There will be a late fee of $50 charged in addition to the regular registration fee when registering onsite.  See the registration page for more information on rates.


Question:  I am paying for Saturday only.  Does the single day fee include the banquet?  No.  You must pay $70 separately for the banquet if you wish to attend.



Question: Is there shuttle transportation to and from the airport to the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch?  There are several options for getting to the hotel from the airportThe cheapest way to get to the hotel from the airport is to take the Metrolink which costs $2.25 each way and will take you from the St. Louis Lambert International Airport into downtown St. Louis.  Take an east bound train from either terminal 1 or 2 and exit at the 8th & Pine Metrolink Station.  From there, walk one block south to Chestnut and four blocks east (towards the Arch) to 4th Street.  They Hyatt Regency is located at the intersections of 4th & Chestnut.  You may also take a short taxi ride from the station to the hotel.

If you prefer a shuttle that will take you directly from the airport to the hotel and return, Go Best Express is offering a discount to VCS attendees ($18 one way or $34 roundtrip).  Visit HERE to book your shuttle.  Finally, a taxi ride to or from the airport will cost approximately $35 each way.


Question: How do I get to the hotel if I am driving?  You may get information for travelling to the Hyatt Regency on the hotel website.  There are daily parking fees either onsite (valet only) or just down the street as a cheaper option.


Question: When can I make my reservation at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch?  The group block will open July 1st.  A link will can be found on the accommodations page.  Please note that it is highly possible that the block will sell out prior to the deadline in which case links to nearby hotels will be added to the website for convenience.


Question:  Is there a discounted rate available for Students/Residents/Interns at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch?  Yes, there is a discounted rate of $99/night plus tax on a group of thirty rooms for those students, interns, residents who are on a limited budget, however, you must call the hotel to reserve a room in that category AND you must share a room with someone of your choice.  See the accommodations page for more information.


Question:  What is the website address to the conference headquarters hotel?  You will find the website here.


Question: When is the last day that I can make a hotel reservation?   The block closes thirty days prior to the conference but please know that it is highly likely to sell out prior to that dates.  After that time, there may be rooms available but you may not be able to get the conference rate.  Links to nearby hotels will be located on the accommodations page once the block sells out.


Question: I am travelling alone.  Can VCS help me find a roommate?  VCS does not pair roommates, however, you may email us at and let us know that you are looking for a roommate. If others contact us looking for the same, we will let you know.


Question: Is there babysitting service available?  No, VCS does not provide any babysitting services and the hotel does not recommend any babysitting services for its guests.


Question: Is there a spa at the hotel?  No