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Dr. Jessica James (far right), assistant professor of veterinary science at Fort Valley State University, anesthetizes a cat, Layla, wrapped in a towel. Veterinary technology major Vincent Denson (left) and LeSaio Woodard, a registered veterinary technician, assists with this process prior to Layla being spayed.
August 1, 2012 – Aspiring veterinarians visited Fort Valley State University, June 13, as part of weeklong summer program.
Thirty rising high school juniors and seniors toured the university’s Department of Veterinary Science facilities, which include laboratories, small and large animal surgery rooms and housing areas for animals like horses, dogs, cats, birds, fish and reptiles. They also attended a presentation, where Dr. Jessica James, assistant professor of veterinary science at FVSU, explained the importance of performing tests prior to administering anesthesia to determine an animal’s health status and to identify possible risk factors.
The VET-STEP II program that the students participated in is coordinated and based at the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine. It is intended to expose students to the veterinary profession, improve study skills and provide academic support and reinforcement. The students resided on Tuskegee’s campus, but traveled 120 miles to Fort Valley State, which is the only school in Georgia with a four-year accredited veterinary science program.
“Being able to witness a surgical procedure in-person isn’t something many teenagers interested in veterinary science have been able to experience,” James said. “By providing firsthand opportunities and knowledge, we can hopefully spark an interest in a profession that can be so rewarding. In addition, these students learned about the program we have here at Fort Valley State.”
For more information about the VET-STEP program, visit:http://www.onemedicine.tuskegee.edu/VET_STEP.htm.
FVSU Agricultural Communications Department