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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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Monthly Archives:

Third Year

Third Year I am writing this blog after enjoying a much needed weekend of relaxation.  I am in the sixth week of school as a 3rd year student and am realizing that this year is quite different than the two prior years.  In one word I would describe it as "hectic."  Most of our days are spent in class from 8-5, and some days tend to go beyond that as we are now performing surgeries one day a week.  While this schedule leaves much less time for studying in the evenings, I feel as if I am getting a better taste of what 4th year will be like and am enjoying being one step closer to being a veterinarian.  For the first time, professors have begun saying in class, "be sure to know this, you'll probably see it on board exams."  While that line can be a terrifying thing to hear, it also helps me realize that we are not too far away from that point in our education. One of the best parts about 3rd year is that you get to begin taking... (Read More)

Boom!!! And they’re off!

Boom!!!  And they’re off! BOOM!!  The Spirit of '02, Texas A&M's cannon, roared to life signaling the start of the Paws to the Pavement BTHO Cancer 3k/5k run and dog walk.  Excitement filled the air as dogs and humans lit off on their paths.  Well, almost everyone got started.  The unexpected cannon fire startled more than a few of our furry friends.  They responded with a chorus of barks, howls, and whimpers.  Have you ever seen a Great Dane cower?  I have now.  The biggest dog at the event stood in between his owner's legs, shivering uncontrollably, and looking to his owner for help.  On the other hand, a tiny Yorkie was trying to pick a fight with Vonn the pit bull.  (More on Vonn later.)  Oh the conundrums of the animal kingdom.  The event marked the opening of the state-of-the-art Diagnostic Imaging & Cancer Treatment Center at Texas A&M's Veterinary Teaching Hospital.  Combined with Texas ... (Read More)

Beat the Hell Outta Cancer

Beat the Hell Outta Cancer One of the most rewarding parts about being a Vet Med Ambassador is getting to represent the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences at community events. This past Saturday, we got to do just that at the first annual Paws to the Pavement Beat the Hell Outta Cancer 3k/5k run! This event was held to celebrate our brand new Diagnostic Imaging and Cancer Treatment Center at the vet school, and I couldn't think of a better reason to be out and about on a Saturday morning. I got there bright and early at 6:45 am (coffee in hand), and was ready to help out. It was so exciting to see hundreds of members of the community, including some of my classmates, show up with their four-legged friends, ready to go.   The race started with the A&M cannon, which I'd only ever heard before at football games. It was pretty loud, and when it went off, all the dogs in the race were definitely ready to run out of there! And ... (Read More)

The Truth about Test Week

The Truth about Test Week For anyone who has never undertook the daunting schedule of vet school test week, picture studying every night for a week, and still wondering if you know enough of the information to do as well as you hope.  These weeks involve late nights, caffeine runs, stacks of books and notes, and study groups.  Yet, despite all of the stress and sleepless nights, there is not a student in the vet school who would trade this for the world.  We have worked for this honor our whole lives, and now we are here, studying and working towards the goal of our lifetime.   Today after a solid week and a half (give or take) of studying for our first two tests of the semester, the 2nd year vet school class has an afternoon to breathe, before we start to prepare for the next one in a week.  This year, I approached round one of tests with a much different attitude.  There is a very different feel among my class, since we have year one un... (Read More)

Summer Research

Summer Research So I thought I would use my first post to talk a little bit about what I did this summer.  Because, really, the best part of vet school are the opportunities and experiences it provides outside the classroom.  During my first year, I applied and ultimately was accepted to participate in the Veterinary Medical Scientist Research Training Program, a program available here at A&M that allows first and second year vet students, guided by a faculty mentor, to conduct their own research projects for 12 weeks during the summer. Now, you might be asking yourself a couple of questions.  First, you might ask, "Why exactly would you want to spend your summer in a lab pipetting solutions into test tubes?"  And, in fact, that's an excellent question.  Who would want to do that?  I wouldn't, and so I didn't.  The best part of this program is that I got to choose my mentor Dr. Chuck Long and my project, both of which exp... (Read More)

Second Year

Second Year About this time last year, rumors began circulating that the second year of veterinary school is much better than the first year.  These rumors became a "light at the end of the tunnel" as I kept reminding myself that next year I would not have to spend my weekends covered in formaldehyde at the Anatomy Lab, and I might be able to survive on just one cup of coffee a day (my average last year was probably close to five cups).  When the class schedules were released this summer, the rumors seemed to be true- class did not start until 9 am and there were days when I would be done at noon!  Do not get me wrong, I honestly enjoyed first year, but it was hard.  I had to adjust to being in class up to eight hours a day and studying every night.  The volume of material is much more extensive than in undergrad and time management is critical.  My classmates and I worked our tails off as we slowly began to wrap our heads around... (Read More)

Welcome

Welcome I suppose it would be appropriate to introduce myself properly... HOWDY! My name is Chace, I am a Biomedical Sciences major. But more importantly I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin' Texas Aggies class of 2012. Whoop!  One week down, only fourteen and a half left until I complete my undergraduate degree here at the wonderful Texas A&M University. It is a bittersweet feeling. While I am very ready for the next phase of my life, the amount of things I have learned while being in college, both in class and outside of it, has been, well, life changing.  As I'm sitting here in immunology with my good friends Alex,  Lauren, and Greg, struggling to understand what in the world Dr. Omran is talking about I'm still scratching my head over what I learned in my physiology class this morning: that the white blood cells in our bodies travel the distance of twice around the world in a single day... That's 2000 miles per hour!... (Read More)

3. V. M.

3. V. M. Two years down, two years to go! After four semesters of numerous sleepless nights, countless hours in the labs, and more fast food than a human being should consume, we are finally upperclassmen! The summertime transition from 2VM to 3VM is an interesting one. Due to the 12-month curriculum for 4VM clinical rotations, this is the last, "free" summer many of us will ever have as students. Some students find enjoyment in sharpening the knowledge we've acquired over the past couple of years in the classroom, and look forward to applying it in a clinical or laboratory setting throughout our break. On the other hand, some of my classmates cringe at the fact of doing anything vet school related during our last summer of freedom! Either way, we are all ecstatic to begin our year of comprehensive medicine courses and electives! After a miserable week of six finals in five days, I packed up and made my way to San Antonio, TX to begin a 10-week internsh... (Read More)

Houston, We have a Veterinarian!

Houston, We have a Veterinarian! Waking up this morning, I planned on using my time and space this week to discuss the joys of summer.  How I have been out of school for a week and was beginning to remember what it was like to wake up rested in the morning.  Or what it was like to have a normal weekend filled with pool outings, Terminator movie marathons, and grilling.  Then I saw the shuttle launch. Just like every young American boy, I traversed all the usual childhood career fantasies.  When I was really young, I was all about being a firefighter.  I collected firemen equipment magazines, watched recruits at the local fire school, and even had a fireman helmet.  The next fantasy was to be a veterinarian.  I worked on an equine embryo transfer project with my local veterinarian that produced a gorgeous little black filly.  I was hooked on being a vet…..but that didn't last long. Then came the astronaut phase where I read about the great... (Read More)

Veterinary Emergency Team

Veterinary Emergency Team For the past month, wildfires have been racing through north and west Texas, leaving a wide swath of death and destruction behind them.  Over a million acres of pasture, hundreds of cattle, and scores of homes have already been lost, and the main wildfire 'season' - caused by an extremely dry spring - has just begun. But what exactly does that have to do with the vet school?  In any emergency, the first concern is always the preservation of human life.  However, with each disaster more and more people are asking what can be done for their animals.  In the vast Texas plains, the situation can be incredibly difficult - ranches are spread over hundreds of acres, so it's hard to know exactly where all the herds are at any given time, much less be able to move entire herds of lumbering cattle ahead of the racing flames.  Cities face their own problems of transportation and safety as they have to evacuate thousands of people a... (Read More)