August 30, 2011
- You can see it on campus, on the roadways, and throughout Bryan
and College Station. The Fall semester has arrived, the summer heat
will dissipate soon, and conversations about Texas A&M football
expand daily. The fish bowl has been too empty and too quiet, so I
couldn't be more excited to see the buzz in the fishbowl and in
hallways of the CVM. The student presence makes us whole and
reminds us once again why we are here. Welcome back students! We
are excited to kick off another year.
- Kudos go to Associate Dean Rogers, Dr. Dan Posey, and Ms.
Yolanda Brinkman for a very successful orientation for our first
year DVM students and to the faculty who participated. There were
many new, creative ideas and activities added to the program for
the class of 2015. In addition to learning what to expect as they
enter the veterinary curriculum, our first year students traveled
to the Texas A&M Recreation Center and participated in team
building activities designed to enrich the orientation experience
and their upcoming experiences with classmates. They immersed
themselves immediately into life as a veterinary student by
visiting the simulation center of the Health Science Center to
participate in mock interviews with clients (actors). To help make
this transition into the DVM program as smooth as possible, nearly
30 faculty members volunteered their time to the orientation. Our
faculty is the best. Their commitment to students is
- On the morning of Tuesday, August 16th, our college recognized
a new set of staff award winners during the annual celebration of
excellence among our staff. This is truly one of my favorite days
of the year for a number of reasons. Most importantly, we pause to
acknowledge the staff, without which we could not be successful.
Congratulations to all who earned awards this year: Lessa Block,
VMTH; Dana Cornett, VTPB; Betty Gaston, VMTH; Julie Harris, VMTH;
David Kindt, VMTH; Jennie Lamb, CLVM; Lynn Mayton, VMTH; Carin
Ponder, VSCS; Rebecca Simmons, VTPP; Vickie Weir, VMTH; and our new
Pearl Enfield Staff Leadership Award Winner, Linda Fillip, CLVM. In
addition, the emcee, Dr. Kenita Rogers, knows how to draw a crowd.
Her creativity, spontaneity, and humor add a special touch to the
event (despite being the target of her humor). I'd also like to
thank our talented entertainers, Dr. Bert Dodd, James Sessum, RVT,
and Amanda Mills, 4th year DVM student. A huge round of applause
goes to the awards committee and all others who helped plan this
event (kolaches are always a hit). The smoother running the event,
the better the planning and the work behind the scenes. So thank
you to our 2011 CVM Awards Committee - Carrie Berry, Karen Russell,
Corey Wall, Patricia Green, Katherine Scott, Tim St. Martin,
Sangeetha Balaji, Chair-elect Debra Turner, and especially our
Committee Chair Wanda Hoelscher.
- Congratulations are extended to Dr. Michael Criscitiello for
his selection as a 2011-12 Montague-Center for Teaching Excellence
Scholar. Dr. Criscitiello continues the tradition of award-winning
faculty here at the CVM that are recognized for excellence in
teaching. We are proud of this accomplishment and appreciate his
dedication to students. The award will be presented to Dr.
Criscitiello at a special luncheon in the fall.
- As many of you may recall, in preparation for predicted budget
reductions by the state legislature, Texas A&M University asked
each college to plan their budgets and reductions according to the
predicted budget reductions. These funds were to prepare for a
similar request from the state, plus to create a "contingency fund"
in case the budget cuts were deeper than anticipated. By being
proactive, Texas A&M was able to retain most of the contingency
money set aside and has developed a plan to reallocate that money
to the colleges in support of programs. Proposals have been
submitted to the CVM leadership team and are currently under review
according to the guidelines set forth by the Office of the Provost.
As soon as we have more information as to the dollar amounts and
programs selected for support here at the CVM, we will share that
information with the college. In addition, if you wish to learn
more about the process and upcoming deadlines for future proposals,
please see the attached document.
- Over the past two weeks, the CVM has had the opportunity to
play a part in a compelling story. Two pit bulls which had been
severely abused and burned were presented by a Good Samaritan,
Christie Wuthrich, to the Aggieland Animal Health Center. Dr.
Barbara Hannes of Aggieland Animal Health Center recognized that
one of them, a young male, would need more extensive care than her
clinic could provide, so she contacted the clinicians here at the
CVM. Dr. James Barr went to the clinic to do an assessment and
recognized the need to transfer the dog to our care here at the
VMTH. The puppy, named Vonn (a Viking word for warrior), has
required extensive treatment, including surgery to remove dead
tissue and to treat his wounds. Vonn is doing well, and while
facing a continued uphill battle, he has shown to be a survivor. He
has endeared himself to the CVM staff, and his story and that of
his dam, has created an outpouring of support from the community.
Updates have been posted on our own CVM homepage, and donations
from caring individuals have continued to come in to help to offset
the cost of Vonn's care. Many thanks to our clinicians,
technicians, staff, and students who have worked tirelessly in the
last week to give Vonn the best chance at recovery possible. You
are all truly amazing!
- The 2011 Freshman Convocation was held on Sunday, August 28th
at 2:30 pm in Reed Arena. This tradition represents the first
welcome to new students at Texas A&M. This year's convocation
speaker was the CVM's own Dr. Ian Tizard. Dr. Tizard's selection is
an honor. His performance was impeccable, as he welcomed these
students to our family of scholars and learners . His message of
the inextricable link between research and teaching at a major
research university, far different from what they had experienced
before, was powerful.
- Fall is a busy time of year for everyone, and the CVM is no
exception. On September 12th, we will welcome back former student
and Veterinary News Network founder, Dr. Jim Humphries. Dr.
Humphries will be giving a media training seminar on Crisis
Communication from 8 am to noon in the Mark Francis Room. All
faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to attend. The value of
lessons learned in this interactive session go far beyond
interactions with the media. They advance communications is all
facets of life.
- On September 17th, we will host our inaugural Beat the Hell
Outta Cancer 3K/5K run to kick-off the grand opening celebration of
our Diagnostic Imaging and Cancer Treatment Center. The run is
scheduled to start at 8 am with the ceremony following immediately
after at 9 am. Texas A&M University President R. Bowen Loftin
will speak at the ceremony. After the ceremony, the center will be
open for tours. For more information on the walk, and to find out
how you and your pet can put your "Paws to the Pavement", visit the official
BTHO Cancer website. The race is open to everyone and their
pets, so we encourage you to register and come join the
Eleanor M. Green, DVM, DACVIM, DABVP
Carl B. King Dean of Veterinary Medicine
College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
Texas A&M University