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Student Volunteer Efforts Help to Train Future Equine Practitioners From all over the Nation

Posted February 21, 2011

Student Volunteer Efforts Help to Train Future Equine Practitioners From all over the Nation

On January 22, 2011, the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM) Student Chapter of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (SCAAEP) hosted a workshop that brought in 250 participants from 22 veterinary schools around the nation. This year's sponsorship and participation has been the highest on record since the workshop's launch in 1995. 

The workshop is run by the CVM SCAAEP and is put on with the help of student, faculty, and staff volunteers at the CVM.  

There are 21 hands-on labs, which range from emergency response to equine dentistry, that the attendees have the option to participate in. Each lab in the workshop is funded by national and local sponsors. Every sponsor gets the opportunity to contribute to the job fair, which is open to the participants after the activities are complete. During lunch the students enjoyed a speech by Dr. Robert P. Franklin, equine veterinarian at Weatherford Equine in Weatherford, Tx. Participants also got the opportunity to experience a "Night Out at Northgate" sponsored by Pfizer. The workshop was a day full of learning, networking and growing for all of the people involved.  

Horse"I felt like this year's workshop went very well," notes Brittany Durham, Wet Lab coordinator and a third year veterinary student at the CVM. "We had an overwhelming response from second and third year student volunteers, as well as from clinician, resident, intern, and technician volunteers. The fact that they give up their Saturday morning to help make this event possible is amazing." 

"We continue to get positive feedback, because students get hands-on opportunities that they would never get to experience in the classroom," explains Kati Glass, president of the CVM AAEP and a third year veterinary student at the CVM. "Schools are continuing to contact us to see if they can get a workshop started. Our program is so successful because of our facilities and all of the backing we have from the volunteers. Our volunteers go so far out of their way to help train future equine practitioners, and we are truly grateful for that." 

Dr. Peter Rakestraw, clinical associate professor at the CVM, thought that the event was a success and everyone who volunteered to help pull the workshop together deserved a pat on the back.  

Horse 2"The Wet Lab committee led by Brittany Durham and Kati Glass did an outstanding job planning for and running the event," explains Rakestraw. "Besides the committee, many other students volunteered to help set up the labs and assist the instructors during the labs. The execution was flawless. This is truly a student run event." 

"I hope next year's workshop will be able to incorporate even more schools and participants," Durham continues. "I think it is amazing that schools from all over the country are interested in this event."

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