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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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Getting my Aggie Ring

Getting my Aggie Ring The highlight of what has been a good third year, so far, has been getting my Aggie ring. Yup, that is right! I BTHO 90 hours, and I still cannot seem to understand how close I am to finishing college. The Aggie Ring Ceremony was everything I heard it was, a moment full of pride. My brother was the person designated to put on my ring, and it was the best moment of 2018 yet. My brother was chosen because he has been my No. 1 supporter of me and the travel required because of living eight hours away from home to get a great education. (He also was a Longhorn fan, so I had to show him a true Aggie tradition). Not only that, but I also got to show my family Kyle Field and take pictures with my ring in the grand 12th Man Stadium. It was very exciting to see how many people showed up from all over to help me celebrate my big day. I was excited for my ring, but I was in awe with the huge support system I have here at A&M and back home. I am truly blessed as a ... (Read More)

The Value of 'Brain Breaks'

The Value of 'Brain Breaks' The first year of veterinary school is fun, exhilarating, and, sometimes, exhausting. With the excitement of class and lab throughout the day and then coming home to study at night, we vet students occasionally forget how to step away from the books and slightly relax. Now that the semester is half way over, I have learned that those tiny moments away from the books are essential to everyday life. At first, school seemed to take a big chunk of my time, or so I thought, and I could not possibly imagine fitting in any “brain breaks.” Well, that did not last too long. I found my focus had started to decrease once I got home from school, and so I had to learn how to incorporate a small break here and there. First, I decided to continue my summer exercise routine of 40 minutes a day of some kind of exercise I enjoyed. Personally, I enjoy running and yoga. Although some days I may not have all of that time, even 20 or 30 minutes of exercise is enough to get me up a... (Read More)

Kinda a Doctor

Kinda a Doctor Sometimes, when I am caught up in the middle of a month full of tests, it’s easy for me to feel overwhelmed by the mass amounts of knowledge I have yet to conquer. As a second-year veterinary student, there are frequent moments of great frustration when I recognize a familiar concept that is still fuzzy and not completely understood or applied yet. But as I talk to first-year students or discuss cases with classmates, there are also many moments that medical terminology and understanding comes easily. I guess on this long road to becoming a doctor, it’s natural to be so busy studying that you don’t realize the progress as it’s being made. It’s odd (and slightly terrifying) to think that in just two and a half years, I will be a licensed practicing veterinarian! I have so much more to learn! I have always wanted to be a veterinarian, and as I go through more and more school, I see how much of an impact animals have in people’s lives. My classmate told me jus... (Read More)

A 'Major' Decision

A 'Major' Decision This is my second year as a biomedical sciences (BIMS) major. Up until the end of last summer, I thought medical school was what I wanted to pursue. Ever since high school, I've joined so many medical organizations and clubs to keep up with what's going on in the field and learn more about it through other people. My plan took a turn, however, when I went back to my motherland, Vietnam, for vacation and a shadowing opportunity. During winter break of my freshman year, since "shadowing" is not really a thing in Vietnam, my mom tried her best to get permission for me to get my shadowing hours done at one of the top hospitals there. Even though it was a very great experience, I realized that I was not really passionate about it. I still love the idea of working in the hospital or clinic environment, where I get to help other people. However, I felt like something was missing; I didn't feel super excited when I did my shadowing. Last summer, I volunteered in the... (Read More)

OK...I can do This

OK...I can do This My experience in veterinary school so far has been an exhilarating, eye-opening, challenging journey. While I've had its extreme highs and lows, I can honestly say that I have enjoyed the ride. At the end of my second year this past spring—the halfway point in the veterinary program—however, I had a mounting fear growing in the back of my mind. I was afraid that I had spent so long in the classroom that I wouldn’t actually know what to do in a real clinical setting in which people are looking to me for answers. To some, this may seem like an irrational fear, but to me and other veterinary students, it is a very realistic fear that we frequently struggle with. I remember thinking, “I’ve literally been in school my entire life; do I even know how to do anything other than be in school?” So that was how I ended my second year, full of self-doubt. I didn’t intend to waste my final summer vacation, though. I reached out to numerous veterinary p... (Read More)

'Flying' Through the First Semester

'Flying' Through the First Semester We are entering the seventh week of veterinary school, and I cannot believe how much time has flown by and that I am almost halfway done with my first semester! Vet school has been a whirlwind, but I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. Yes, I’ve had to study more than I ever have before, but seeing it pay off in the end and knowing that it’s helping prepare me for my dream career makes it worth it. Learning and practicing how to perform a proper physical exam on all kinds of animals has been my favorite, so far, because it ties in the information we have learned in lecture and allows us to apply those concepts to a living animal—plus, we get to be around the animals. Another thing that I have really enjoyed is how willing all of our teachers are to help us learn and grasp concepts and to help prepare us for the future; they keep telling us that we’d be amazed at how much we know already, even in the first semester in vet school. As we progress th... (Read More)

Adventures in Puppy Sitting

Adventures in Puppy Sitting Extroverted Daisy, posing for a picture like a good girl Anyone with a busy internship schedule understands the time and hard work put into these opportunities. Even during the summer, these internships—combined with classes, extracurricular activities, and other obligations—leave very little time remaining in BIMS students’ schedules, to look for a job that fits around your availability. However, my luck came in the form of a Facebook post and pushed me into some form of an entrepreneurial venture I had never imagined—pet sitting! My neighborhood’s community Facebook page has proved to be an efficient source for advertising yourself and your experiences. One day, a neighbor posted to our page asking for someone to care for their two dogs while they were away on vacation. Immediately, I was intrigued. Taking care of cute dogs and getting paid to do so? It can’t get much better than that! Throughout the summer, I was able to fit i... (Read More)

Taking on Phoenix

Taking on Phoenix   Third-year veterinary students Ryan De Vuyst, Reagan McAda, Rebecca Gooder, and Kale Johnson prepare for the Quiz Bowl Competition. Recently, 10 Texas A&M veterinary students, including myself, traveled to Phoenix, Arizona, for the 51st annual American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) Conference. As if simply attending my very first AABP conference wasn’t exciting enough, three fellow third-year veterinary students and I had the opportunity to compete in the Quiz Bowl competition! The Quiz Bowl is bracket-style competition, during which students must not only be well-versed in a variety of bovine veterinary medicine related topics, but also have lightning-fast fingers in order hit the buzzer before another team does! While our team, unfortunately, did not advance out of the first round (congratulations to University of Georgia for winning our round and the entire competition!), it was still a very fun, worthwh... (Read More)

A 'Test'-y Situation

A 'Test'-y Situation As I’m writing this, I am finishing up my fifth week of classes in my first year of veterinary school. At this point I have had an anatomy exam, a physiology exam, and my first immunology exam.  I am a little worn out, but the one thing that never fades is how much I am loving vet school. I have been working toward this goal my whole life and because of that I am truly enjoying my time. The things we are learning have a new level of pertinence to them and I am trying to soak up as much as I can. We have had multiple opportunities to get hands-on experience with animals, which makes the whole process so much fun. It is a lot of hard work being in vet school, but my experiences during my undergraduate career are helping me to be successful. Being a biomedical sciences student as an undergraduate, I learned how to effectively manage my time and focus on my studies. Taking classes like anatomy and physiology in my undergraduate days also ... (Read More)

What's in an Externship?

What's in an Externship?   Mary Margaret takes a look into the eye of a horse that was being examined for a complicated ocular disease during her second summer externship. What does a veterinary student do during their limited summer breaks? Anything that looks a lot like school without actually being more school, of course. I chose to work in a few hospitals and also extern in a few hospitals. What’s an externship? Well, it's two or more weeks of total immersion into a practice, which allows students to try and figure out if that practice or career path will be a good option for them. All fourth-year students at A&M complete somewhere between two and 12 weeks of externships at clinics all over the state and, sometimes, the world. I picked three different equine hospitals across the state and spent a few weeks this summer trying to figure out if being a horse vet is a good idea. The first externship was still technically during breeding season ... (Read More)