A Message from Katie Bishop, V'17
Vice President of Lifelong Learning
Penn Vet Alumni Board
I took a meandering path to becoming a veterinarian. I aspired to be a one as a young child, growing up a daughter of a veterinarian and working at my parents’ animal hospital. And yet, in undergrad, I was also drawn to the social sciences and humanities with vague notions of law school.
Graduating during the Great Recession, I interviewed at a fast-growing healthcare software company where the interviewer quizzically (and perceptively) asked if I intended to apply to veterinary school. I had convinced myself I was not and plunged into this new job. I worked closely with physicians and nurses on their new EMR software, a nonmedical tool that has large impacts on their clinical day-to-day.
I loved the intersection of the clinical and nonclinical spheres — that we can directly improve patient care by making smart, clinically informed decisions on the nonclinical and operational aspects of practice. I wanted to apply that to the veterinary world and headed to veterinary school after all.
Today, as a veterinarian who is at the intersection of medicine and business, I still find myself constantly learning, both clinically and nonclinically, in order to make the best decisions for my patients, clients, and teams.
There are some truly mind-boggling statistics on how fast human knowledge is expanding. Our profession is no different. Our collective veterinary knowledge base is constantly growing and evolving as the medicine advances. We must continue learning and incorporating new information long after veterinary school in order to keep pace and deliver the best care to our patients.
Now, that does not mean lifelong learning is always easy. We may live in a time with limitless knowledge at our fingertips, but many of us are busier than ever just trying to keep it all together. The past two years, while very difficult, have shown that virtual and hybrid approaches to learning can be both effective and efficient. The Penn Vet Alumni Board is dedicated to facilitating your lifelong learning journey by providing innovative and insightful educational opportunities. While that includes the expected offerings, such as online continuing education, lifelong learning extends beyond conferences and classrooms. By bringing alumni together, the board hopes to foster a robust alumni community so we can also learn from each other