Thank you so much for supporting my future career as a food animal veterinarian. I really appreciate the time and effort that you put into the Targeting Excellence scholarship program! Without this scholarship, I would not be able to travel to California or Wisconsin for externships during my 4th year. These externships will broaden my view of the US dairy industry and help me better serve my future clients in Pennsylvania.
Following graduation, I plan to become an associate veterinarian at a progressive dairy practice in rural Pennsylvania. While I enjoy all aspects of bovine medicine, my professional interests include transition cow management and milk quality. I hope to use my career to help Pennsylvania farmers remain competitive in the national market to preserve our farming heritage. Observing profit team meetings in Central and Southeastern Pennsylvania, I watched several fourth-generation farmers face the decision to sell their cows because of low milk prices. Throughout my education, the agricultural community has supported me, and I want to give back by volunteering with youth organizations and professional associations. For the past three years, I have served as a judge for the PA Junior Holstein Dairy Bowl Competition. Eventually, I want to coach a dairy bowl team to give students opportunities to explore the dairy industry. When Penn Vet funding was cut from the Commonwealth budget drafts, I lobbied state senators in Harrisburg to help restore our state appropriation. The support of PVMA and PA Farm Bureau was invaluable in this process, and I want to join their civic engagement efforts as a veterinarian. Throughout college and veterinary school, I have had the opportunity to attend many professional meetings to learn about cutting edge research and hear from top bovine scientists and veterinarians. These experiences showed me the importance of professional associations and continuing education. At the 2016 American Association of Bovine Practitioners convention, I noticed that there was only one female member on the Board of Directors. Although this will naturally change as more female students enter this field, I want to be a part of the progress. One of my life goals is to serve on the AABP Board of Directors to represent the perspective of female bovine veterinarians and be a role model for veterinary students in bovine medicine. Another organization that I am committed to supporting is Christian Veterinary Missions. Throughout my career, I hope to volunteer on short-term mission trips in the United States and abroad. I want to help people who do not have access to veterinary care for their livestock or cannot afford it. In rural communities throughout the world, food animals play a central role in their owners’ lives as the sole source of income and food for their family.
Support Students in food Animal agriculture - Become a Donor or Sponsor today!
Targeting Excellence PO Box 759 RoseHill, NC 28458
For questions please call: Rachel Virden 678-448-2368