CVM Looks to the Future with Veterinary Innovation Summit
Posted May 05, 2017
The Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine
& Biomedical Sciences (CVM) and the North American Veterinary Community
(NAVC) welcomed game-changers, innovators, entrepreneurs, and
visionaries to the Veterinary Innovation Summit on April 28-30. At
the event, veterinary and non-veterinary entrepreneurs and health
professionals shared fresh perspectives on the latest technologies,
debated controversial issues, fostered new ideas, and catapulted
the profession into the future with fearlessness and
Veterinary Innovation Summit presentations in the VENI Building
explored fresh perspectives on the latest technologies,
controversial issues, new ideas, and catapulting the profession
into the future with fearlessness and innovation.
Dedicated to sparking and fostering ingenuity, the Veterinary
Innovation Summit featured a combination of unique programming, a
diverse attendee pool, and an immersive learning environment for
This innovative intersect of processes for people to have
conversations was one of brilliance and discovery. The many
breakout sessions, the networking opportunities, and the
conversations in the hallways created an ambiance hard to describe
to those who did not attend.
Texas A&M President Michael Young welcomed the participants
and told a story about his and his wife Marty’s love for animals.
They came to Texas with a horse and now have a ranch full of
animals, all of which have visited the Texas A&M Veterinary
Medical Teaching Hospital. Dr. Eleanor Green, the Carl B.
King Dean of Veterinary Medicine, spoke about the CVM’s incredible
faculty and the innovative technology and teaching methods they
have brought to the college. Dr. Adam Little, CVM director of
Veterinary Innovation and Enterprenuership, discussed his first
meeting with Dr. Green during which they shared the vision of this
summit and prepared everyone for the two-day journey ahead.
In all, the summit welcomed more than 380 participants, 24 of
whom were from nine different countries, including 11 from the
United Kingdom, nine from Canada, two from France, one from
Germany, and one from Palestine.
Veterinary professionals who successfully have started their own
companies or created new software and programs for the industry
spoke on a panel Saturday, encouraging other practitioners to
awaken their own innovative and entrepreneurial spirits.
A few examples of the amazing keynotes included:
- Ben Jacobs, co-founder and chief executive
officer of Whistle, a GPS and activity tracker for dogs, who spoke
about finding and developing a product that would address a pain
point in the customer market, while looking for the quantified
- Stephen Chen, the founder and chief executive
officer of PETNOSTICS, a company that provides at home urine test
kits for pets, who talked about democratizing diagnostics and
making diagnostics accessible to pet owners;
- Raymond McCauley, chair of digital biology at
Singularity University, who discussed the digital biology
engineering of healthy animals, which allows for DNA microarrays
for any species that can be customized for around $60, and how
whole genome sequencing is no longer a thing of the past;
- Benjamin Lewis, a fourth-year veterinary
student at the University of Pennsylvania and the chief executive
officer and co-founder of The One Health Company, who discussed how
the company is crowdsourcing the everyday veterinarian to take part
in biomedical research, which can not only double the revenue for
the veterinarians but also have them participate in groundbreaking
research to help advance their field;
- and Jon Ayers, chief executive officer at
Idexx, who spoke about the human-animal bond and innovation at
Idexx as it strives for “innovation with intelligence.” Eighty-six
percent of Idexx’s revenue is in companion animal health, and it is
approaching $2 billion in worth, all of which was organically grown
from within the company.
Planning has already begun for the summit to return to College
Station in 2018. Ideas and suggestions are welcomed.
To see more images from the VIS, visit the CVM Flickr page.
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