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Student Stories


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VMD-PhD Program Leads in Training

Completing a veterinary degree—with four years of intensive classwork, clinical rotations, surgeries, community outreach, and more—takes perseverance. So does earning a PhD. It takes exceptional dedication to do both.

James Ferrara, a third-year student in Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine.

Penn One Health goes abroad

James Ferrara, a third-year student in Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine, grew up in Montvale, N.J., with his family’s Labrador retriever, Cody. When Ferrara was 10 years old, Cody, also 10, suffered from arthritis and had to be put down. Ferrara says that this childhood experience encouraged his interest in veterinary medicine. While he hoped to one day minimize animal suffering, he later learned that animals and humans have a global impact on each other’s health.

Briana Wilson V'19, helps to establish a commercial goat dairy operation in Gambia.

Vet students’ goat dairy aims to fill a nutrition gap in Gambia

Briana Wilson, a third-year student in the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine, plans to pursue a career as a small-animal vet, mainly caring for cats and dogs. But this summer, she’s getting a trial-by-fire education in goat husbandry, project management, and negotiating the challenges of helping launch a business in a relatively remote region of a developing nation.

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Recent grad Meghan Ramos helps people by training animals

Penn Vet graduate Meghan Ramos, V'18 continues her work at the Penn Vet Working Dog Center as a research fellow.

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Change in Plans

Recent graduate Sridhar Veluvolu, V’18, entered Penn Vet wanting to be a general practitioner. By the time he graduated, he had a different plan.  

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Hooked on Birds

Linnea Tracy, V’19, believes birds are veterinary medicine’s next frontier, and she wants to help chart the way. Driven by a profound love of animals and interest in the intersections among human and animal health, agriculture and public health, Tracy has begun the journey at Penn Vet.

Meghana Pendurthi-PIADC

The Definition of a "Real" Vet

When I tell my friends and family members what I would like to do when I graduate from Penn Vet, oftentimes I am met with the question, “Don’t you want to be a real vet?”

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Penn Vet Grads on Forbes "30 Under 30" List

Lisa Gretebeck, 26, Penn Vet Class of 2015, and Dr. Nikki Wright, 28, Penn Vet Class of 2014, have been named to Forbes’ prestigious"30 Under 30" list for 2015, in the healthcare category. Gretebeck and Wright are recognized for cofounding Pou Sante: Amar Haiti, which provides sustainable animal husbandry training and resources to impoverished families living in rural Haiti.

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2015 Student Inspiration Award Winners

Launched in 2008, the award is presented annually to Penn Vet students who demonstrate the potential to significantly advance the frontiers of veterinary medicine and expand the profession’s impact on the well being of animals and society.

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Ellen Lapuck -- Veterinarians Without Borders

Ellen Lapuck, V'18, recounts her summer experience working with Veterinarians Without Borders.

Gallagher Hush Puppy Story

'Hush-Puppy' device rewards dogs for quiet time

For many dog owners, incessant barking is the bane of their existence. Some resort to using “shock collars” that deliver a jolt when their animal barks. The brainchild of Penn Vet student Lindsay Gallagher, however, may one day help pet lovers quiet their pets using positive reinforcement in the form of food rewards.

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Laurel Redding: Monitoring Antibiotic Use on Andean Farms

What Redding found is telling of the challenges of making a living in these remote and often impoverished areas, and of the significant role that veterinarians can play in protecting animal and human health around the world.

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Gabriel Innes, V'16 - Learning in China

 Over the past four years, seven Penn Vet students have participated in externships in China at the Huaxia Dairy. Gabriel Innes, V'16, shares some reflections from his journey last summer.