I would like to thank the Targeting Excellence sponsors, board and committees for making this scholarship possible for myself and other students pursuing degrees in the food animal industry. As I enter my first year of veterinary school, this scholarship will be a big help to pay for the various expenses that come with that. As someone who has grown up surrounded and involved with agriculture, businesses in the industry investing in students wanting to enter the field is greatly appreciated.
The importance of the veterinary profession is becoming more evident than ever before. From public health concerns to veterinarian shortages, the need for veterinarians in every aspect of the field shows no sign of decreasing anytime soon. One area of veterinary medicine that is in great need of more doctors is rural large animal practices. Upon completing veterinary school, I plan to work as mixed large animal practitioner, providing care for animals that are depended on by their owners to make a living. Although I have developed a great passion for providing the best care possible for these animals, it is the relationships built throughout the community that I find most rewarding from the job.
Arguably the most crucial piece to the veterinary profession is human interaction. The relationships made between veterinarians and farmers are pivotal for ensuring the proper care of our food animals. This is something I hope to establish once I begin my career. Not only is this important for the welfare of the animals, but also ensures the safety of those who will eventually consume them. Meeting clients throughout my short time in the veterinary field has been one of the most interesting yet enjoyable parts. The gratitude displayed by many for a veterinarian to see their animal always sticks with me. In many cases, the relationships I have observed developed over decades of veterinarians providing care to that client’s herd. Not only are the interpersonal relationships developed, but an important role in the community is as well. Whether it be working at the county fair or on the farm, veterinarians are heavily relied on by people and animals which excites me to join the profession.
It is no secret the trials and tribulations that come with working within large animal medicine. I have watched veterinarians navigate through tough situations and ensure each patient is getting the best possible care, regardless of the time of day. This is something I have developed great respect for and aspire to do one day. As I continue my journey in veterinary medicine, I hope to be one of many who work to provide the best care for both patients and their owners alongside a new generation of veterinarians working to serve rural populations and their livestock.