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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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Preparing for a White Coat

Preparing for a White Coat There are officially four more weeks of my second year of veterinary school! This easily has been the most challenging semester of my vet school career. And although I’m incredibly appreciative of all the information I’ve learned, I’m ready for a break. It’s weird to think that this upcoming summer will be the last summer break of my life before I'm thrown into the adult world, with a full-time job, responsibilities, and all that jazz. But in the meantime, I’m focusing on upcoming events like finals, summer plans, and White Coat Ceremony. The White Coat Ceremony, for the 2VMs, is next Friday (April 13)! It is a pretty big event, symbolizing our transition from the classroom to clinics, and I am SO. PUMPED. It’s practically a graduation in the middle of our vet school career. People’s families are coming in, there will be tears and tons of photos, and also lots of traffic considering that it’ll be the same day as Ring Day on main campus. B... (Read More)

Celebrating the Small Things

Celebrating the Small Things Veterinary school is tough, but it is so worth it. The best part of school is getting to finally learn about what you have wanted to learn about for so long—veterinary medicine. When you can look at what you are learning and then apply it to something you have seen when you have shadowed or worked previously, it makes class so much fun. After so many days of class and lab, though, vet school also can be exhausting. It is hard to maintain that same excitement you had during orientation; you forget to look at the things you are learning and see a clinical application. Instead, you see another topic to study before your first test. One thing that I have learned from this year, my first in vet school, is to celebrate the small things. There are so many times when I wish that I had gotten a better grade on a test or that I had more time to sleep, but when I walk into school everyday and remind myself that I get to go to vet school, I have such a ... (Read More)

A Big Saturday in Aggieland

A Big Saturday in Aggieland March 24 was not a regular Saturday here in Aggieland. In addition to the veterinary students in the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences holding the 25th annual open house, it was also the day of one of my favorite annual service projects, The Big Event. The Big Event is the largest one-day, student-run service project that allows us college students to say "thank you" to the residents of Bryan and College Station. Originally, The Big Event started at Texas A&M in the early 80s, but it has slowly spread to other schools across the country that participate in this project with us every year. This year, more than 20,000 Aggies came together for a fun-filled day of selfless service. These 20,000 Aggies registered with a group and then were assigned a site, tools, and specific tasks that the resident of that site is requesting. This year, I was the job site leader for my small group of five. As site leader, I was in char... (Read More)

A Spring Break Surprise

A Spring Break Surprise Ali and Spencer, newly engaged Spring Break has come and gone in a flash! I traveled to Utah’s Zion National Park with my boyfriend, Spencer, and we camped for three days under the Utah stars. Being used to waking up at 6 a.m. for school, it wasn’t hard for me to adjust to our early-morning hikes, but for Spencer, it was a bit harder! Beating the Spring Break crowd is a priority, because being in nature surrounded by loud strangers is never ideal. My favorite hike was up Angel’s Landing, one of the most coveted spots to hike in North America. Half of the trail is a series of 21 brutal uphill switchbacks, which make your legs (and lungs) shaky like Jell-O. A sedentary, studying lifestyle has somehow failed to put me in peak mountain-climbing shape. The last half of the hike has chains built into the mountain, a narrow rock path, and cliffs on either side of you. I kept telling myself, “Don’t look down.” But it never worked. I repeated... (Read More)

Class Schedule, Exams, and Stress

Class Schedule, Exams, and Stress Recently, on a veterinary school tour, I heard this question: “How does the class schedule look like?” I rarely get asked this—I'm more commonly asked how hard it is to get into veterinary school—but this is an important question, because, in my opinion, I think that it is harder to complete a DVM degree than it is to get accepted to veterinary school. To start, we can look at my spring veterinary class schedule and how I am dealing with this hectic routine. I start the week with Monday, 8 a.m. exams and end with my Friday, 3 p.m. class. My daily studying hours are blocked from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m., or perhaps more like 3 a.m. Not being a morning person, this is a real challenge. It is important to know your learning style and quickly implement a study routine. This will save time for studying and will increase time for sleep. If you want to attend vet school, you need to get ready to put in that many study hours. The exam schedule usually b... (Read More)

Forward Thinking

Forward Thinking I am now almost halfway through veterinary school, and I can’t help but be blown away. Just the other day, I stood talking with my friend at the dog park while our two pets played. The topic came up of our mutual friend being accepted into the incoming class of veterinary students. My friend mentioned how excited she is to apply next year and how crazy it would be if she got in: she would be in the first year, our mutual friend in the second, my roommate in the third, and me in my fourth year. I agreed, not fully processing the concept at the time. Helping out in the CVM Marketplace, a fourth-year student came in to purchase some College of Veterinary Medicine merchandise. As we casually conversed while she checked out, I noticed the tears in her eyes. “I just finished my last rotation at the vet school,” she informed me; afterward, she said, she sat in her car for 30 minutes processing that fact. I couldn’t imagine the emotional overload she m... (Read More)

Summer Aspirations

Summer Aspirations A few days ago, six fellow classmates and I gathered to have a catered lunch from a College Station favorite, Blue Baker, with our three faculty mentors. Every now and then we meet to discuss current happenings in the vet school and receive some sage advice about developing our future careers. On this occasion, being mid-semester, spring break and summer plans were big topics of conversation. Most of us are planning on catching up on sleep and TV shows during our Spring Break week, but a few relayed some exciting travel plans for sunny destinations; conversely, I know quite a few students and friends who are choosing snow for their week away. As for me, the mountains will have to wait until summer, when I plan to stop by my parents’ home in Colorado before hopefully heading off to a veterinary student internship! Last summer, I spent the majority of my time at home in Colorado, helping out with my family’s ever-growing ranch of animals an... (Read More)

Preparing to Study Abroad

Preparing to Study Abroad Several months ago, I was accepted to the biomedical sciences' Costa Rica semester abroad program. Woo hoo! But, now, I have to think about the most essential thing—money. How am I supposed to get the money to pay for this? As a first-generation student who is dependent on financial aid, money is a huge issue for me. Thus, I started looking into scholarships and found one I am eligible for—The Gilman International Scholarship. The Gilman International Scholarship is geared to Pell Grant recipients who are intending on studying abroad in a level one or two travel advisory country for more than three weeks. The application requires a statement of purpose essay (basically asks why you decided to go study abroad) and a project plan essay (which is your plan to promote the Gilman Scholarship AFTER you study abroad), along with your official transcript. It has been a pretty easy process, other than the essay. The application is due in a few da... (Read More)

The Importance of Wellness

The Importance of Wellness One of the exciting things going on for students is the opening of the College of Veterinary Medicine's new Wellness Room. The Wellness Room was designated for use by vet students and faculty when the Veterinary & Biomedical Education Complex opened in 2016, and new machines and equipment were recently moved in there. Wellness is something that is highly encouraged and talked about throughout vet school, so I thought that in light of the new opening of the wellness room, I would share my own personal wellness journey. When I started my first semester of vet school, I had no idea how hard it would be to find balance in my life. I felt like I never had time to work out or spend time with my husband; some days I felt like I barely had enough time to shower and do other, general self-care routines. On top of that, my grades were struggling. I’m not sure how, but I did make it through my first year, and I came out stronger on the other side. ... (Read More)

Ready for a Good Day (Lessons Learned from Bubba)

Ready for a Good Day (Lessons Learned from Bubba) Veterinary school is hard. If you’ve been talking to vet students or graduated veterinarians, you'll hear this phrase pretty often. People will first congratulate you on the path you've chosen, and then try to warn you of its steepness. You won't believe them, even when you're filling out the extensive application, or prepping for the nerve-wracking interview, or just trying to get your hands on as many sick or broken animals as you can and realizing its impossible to help them all. Well, maybe you'll believe them a little, and steel yourself against the stress, but it won't really sink in until that first week of vet school bowls you over and leaves you buried in the dirt. And then the next week does the same. And the next. Over and over again for four years. As you can imagine, this takes a bit of a toll on a person. To keep our heads above the rising tide of stress, we vet students learn a couple of coping mechanisms. Maybe it's exercis... (Read More)