To the Targeting Excellence sponsors, board of directors, and state committees who make TE scholarship opportunities possible,Thank you from the bottom of my heart for making this Targeting Excellence scholarship available to me! I cannot wait to get started with my Animal Sciences studies at Purdue University so I can come one step closer to my dream of becoming a large animal veterinarian. I have known for a long time that the veterinary medical field is where I belong, but the cost of the education that it would take to achieve my dream has always been a concern. Thanks to your work and your dedication to bettering the next generation of animal agriculturalists, I can devote myself more fully to my studies without worrying nearly as much about how I will afford my tuition. I hope that as I become involved at Purdue University, I can continue to be an advocate for agriculture and improve myself for the sake of bettering the agriculture industry in my career. Thank you again for your work in making this scholarship possible for me!God bless, Holly Lehe
West Lafayette, IN
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Much of my early childhood was spent accompanying my mom, a swine veterinarian, on farm calls. I distinctly remember, as a four year old girl, helping her with necropsies at swine farms by holding open tissue sample baggies as she dissected pigs. Ever since I was old enough to understand what my mom did for a living, I dreamed of the day I would become a veterinarian myself. My dream is to use my love of animals, my passion for servant leadership, and my interest in science to make animals’ lives better. I do not want the money or prestige that comes with having “Doctor” in front of my name. I want to work with animals every day, and I want to make their lives better. My dream is a broad one, so it leaves a lot of room for exploration, change, and growth. That is why my career goals are quite tentative. I desire to work in capacities where there are desperate needs for veterinarians, and many of these capacities are involved in food animal medicine. Some areas of work in which I am currently interested include food animal inspection through employment with the USDA, and research. If I develop a particular specialty interest in veterinary school, such as public health, nutrition, or preventative medicine, will spend part of my early career completing an internship and/or a residency program to prepare for work in a specialized field, earning board certification if needed. If I choose to take the path of a more general practice, I will establish a large- or mixed-animal practice in a rural area that is under-served by veterinarians. Regardless of which specific paths I end up taking, I will commit myself to the best that this industry has to offer me and to the best that I have to offer this industry. I will go where animals are underserved, and I will do what other veterinarians will not or cannot do. I will spend every day from now until the end of my life bettering my leadership capacity, my clinical skills, my knowledge, and my decision-making abilities. I will do what it takes to make animals and people healthier, food safer, and this industry better. The timeline, the route, and even the destination of my journey to becoming a veterinarian have been variable, but the purpose of the journey has been constant. That purpose, to become an uncommon veterinarian who meets needs in whatever capacity I am most needed, is what inspires me to learn all that I can and to be the best leader I can be.