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Student Perspectives
The Student Perspectives blog is a fresh and realistic snapshot of the life of veterinary medical and biomedical science students.
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Looking Forward to Fourth Year

Looking Forward to Fourth Year This past week, my third year class had a meeting about scheduling the fourth and final year of the veterinary curriculum: clinics! The first three years of the DVM program take place in classrooms and labs, preparing us for the challenges of seeing actual live clinical patients as fourth-year students working in our teaching hospitals. I have been looking forward to my fourth year since first-year orientation, but it wasn't until this meeting that I realized that it won't be much longer until I'm actually in clinics! My classmates and I have some big decisions to make in the next couple weeks as we move forward in planning the remainder of our time here in veterinary school. To begin, we need to choose a career track, either "Large Animal," "Small Animal," "Mixed Animal," or "Alternative Career." The career track a student chooses determines his or her required course list and rotation options. A "rotation" is a two-week span of time that a student spends... (Read More)

A Happy Birthday

A Happy Birthday My birthday was on the Wednesday of last week. I just turned 19. Young for a sophomore, right? Anyway, I made it a point to really enjoy myself this time around because my last birthday—well, it was just all right when it came to the festivities. That night, I celebrated the first few hours of my birthday cooped up at the library annex studying for some chemistry exam. Once the exam was over, all I wanted to do was go home and sleep. All my friends—who had exams that same day—weren’t exactly in party mode either. Any plans to actually have fun that day were trumped by my overbearing fatigue. In other words, that day was not the epitome of an 18th birthday celebration. I was so focused on doing something for the “big 18” that when I didn’t get a chance to do anything in particular, I deemed it just an okay birthday. However, this year, my perspective has drastically changed. Although this year I spent the first few hours of my birthday studying ... (Read More)

On Not Getting Homesick

On Not Getting Homesick Everyone always asks me if I ever get homesick, but I always joke that my family doesn’t give me a chance to miss them. Because my family is an Aggie family, they always come up to the football games, so I see them every weekend or every other weekend during the fall at least. One of the things I miss the most about home, though, are my pets. Ever since I was little I have always lived with at least four pets, so living in a dorm, it can be hard because we can’t have pets. It helps that my mom and sisters will sometimes send me pictures of our pets, but it still isn’t the same. My family and me Staying busy definitely helps prevent homesickness, and this year has definitely kept me busy.  It is only the sixth week of school, and I already have had a test in every class. I haven’t had time to relax because I am about to take my second tests in my classes. The good and bad thing about this semester is I have a test for at least one class ... (Read More)

Take me back to Italy

Take me back to Italy With my third year of veterinary school in full swing, and the first round of tests under my belt, I’m really missing Europe. This summer, I had the opportunity to take a food safety and public health workshop at the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Padua in Italy. The class included three students from Texas A&M, Dr. Christine Budke (a professor at Texas A&M who teaches public health to first- and second-year veterinary students), a student from St. George’s University in Grenada, and eight Italian students. The first week of the course we had guest lecturers speaking to us about different aspects of food safety and public health in Europe. The second week, we toured different facilities where food is processed. One of the guest lecturers during the first week was Professor Frans J.M. Smulders from the Institute of Meat Hygiene, Meat Technology, and Food Science from the University of Veterinary Medicine in Wien, Aus... (Read More)

Finding Balance

Finding Balance Fall is finally here, and with it comes many wonderful things. The college football season is underway, and the Aggies are dominating. Whoop!! The morning temperatures are starting to drop, hinting at colder weather to come, and the leaves are changing colors and falling from the trees. Meanwhile, vet school classes are in full swing, and things are starting to really get busy. I am in my second year of veterinary school, and although we have a bit more free time, the curriculum has increased in difficulty relative to first year. Last year, our classes laid down the foundation of veterinary medicine as we learned all the ways that the animal body should function under normal conditions. We studied anatomy, physiology, immunology, histology, embryology, behavior, microbiology, neurology, and more. This year, we are required to not only learn a TON of new material, but we are also having to draw upon the things we learned last year to help us und... (Read More)

A Summer With My Mom

A Summer With My Mom Every summer, I have the unique experience of working with my mom at her veterinary clinic. Growing up with my mom as a vet has given me my drive and passion for veterinary medicine. This summer was extra special, as it would be our last summer to work together for a long time, and it was one of the best summers yet! My mom has taught me so much about veterinary medicine throughout the years, and this past summer was no different. After having one year of vet school under my belt, I was able to apply what I had learned last year. It was really neat to see my education start to come together. This is my second year of vet school, and it’s been cool to see that what I saw and what I learned this summer, we are currently learning in our classes this year, such as pharmacology and parasitology. This summer, I was able to help my mom in various surgeries, help her in the exam rooms, and learn important communication skills while watching her intera... (Read More)

Howdy

Howdy As a biomedical sciences (BIMS) major, the first semester of my junior year has been going exceptionally well so far.  As a newly minted upperclassman, I have begun taking much more challenging—yet interesting—courses. With the curriculum that BIMS has to offer, my schedule is a good balance between rigor and enlightenment. Aside from academics, there have been a lot of interesting things going on around College Station. So far our Fightin’ Texas Aggie Football team has gone undefeated, and I was able to watch our boys BTHO of Lamar and Rice. Additionally, this past Friday, I went to my first ring ceremony, where I got to see my roommate receive her Aggie Ring! Overall, the first month of school has gotten off to a great start, and I am really looking forward to what the rest of the semester has in store. (Read More)

Lessons Learned in Junior Surgery

Lessons Learned in Junior Surgery One of the best parts of third year is getting to participate in junior surgery. Junior surgery is where we practice our surgical skills and begin to get comfortable with the different procedures we will be expected to perform in practice. It is exciting, nerve wracking, fun, and terrifying all at the same time. We are in groups of three, and rotate between being anesthetist, assistant surgeon, and surgeon. After completing three weeks of junior surgery and performing all three positions, I have compiled a list of lessons that my classmates and I have learned so far. No matter how much you plan, nothing goes according to plan. Always have the surgery table at the right height. Your back will thank you. Make sure all of your instruments are in your pack. It's difficult when you don't have the right tools. Standing for long periods during surgery can be taxing, so don't lock your knees. If you ignore the advice above and do lock ... (Read More)

Training Dogs and their People!

Training Dogs and their People! Over two years ago, I took my miniature poodle, Harley, for puppy kindergarten at Puppy Love Training. Dr. Kay Stephens is a veterinarian who worked full time in private practice until deciding to devote her time to dog behavior and training. The puppy kindergarten class was filled with socialization, basic obedience, and tips to solve behavioral problems. Kay noticed that I was very interested in dog training and got me involved by training her puppies during class, improving my skills as a trainer. I am now teaching an Intro Agility class, private obedience lessons, as well as substituting for Kay in her puppy kinder classes. One of the most important lessons that Kay taught me was in order to be a great dog trainer you not only had to be able to teach dogs, but their people too! When you are teaching classes, you get to spend time with the handler and dog for one hour a week usually. In order for a dog to really learn something, they shou... (Read More)

Senioritis

Senioritis Se·nior·i·tis Noun, humorous An ebbing of motivation and effort by school seniors as evidenced by tardiness, absences, and lower grades I’m going to go ahead to expand on that definition to include other signs in evidence such scatterbrainedness and just a general lack of organization. And apparently a minimal grasp of the English language to the point where one would rather make up words then actually look new ones up. Point of clarification: I am in fact in my last semester of my undergraduate career, and due to a relatively light course load (at least compared to the last three years), I’ve been struck with an extreme case of senioritis. I wish I could pinpoint when I first noticed the appearance of symptoms, but I simply passed it off as my inability to get back into the groove of school after a totally awesome summer. I finally accepted my condition when I had one of these moments: Leave my apartment, realize I forgot my cellphone.... (Read More)