SVM Celebrates Excellence at Spring Term Awards Ceremony 

The School of Veterinary Medicine celebrated its Spring 2022 Term Awards on April 23 during a virtual event that included students, faculty, and staff.

Dr. Tara Paterson, SVM awards committee chair, opened the ceremony by remarking on the significance of the night: “Even though we are not all together celebrating in the same room or space, it doesn’t take away from the magnitude of the occasion. We hope that you enjoy spending the next hour with us celebrating your colleagues, your faculty, the staff, and all the wonderful things that contribute to making SGU such an amazing institution.”

Vice Provost of Institutional Advancement Brendan LaGrenade also addressed the virtual crowd. He shared his thoughts on continuing the ceremony virtually, and how it “is a testament to how important these awards are” to showcase students’ and faculty’s achievements. “I also feel compelled to add that you vets know how to make academia interesting and fun,” he added.

Over 20 sets of awards were presented during the event, including the first for SVM’s Surgery Club—the Sharpest Scalpel Award. Also of note was the Award for Outstanding Service to SGU honoring Dr. Rolf Larsen who will retire at the end of this term, and the induction of 26 students into the Alpha Delta Chapter of the Society of Phi Zeta.

“We at the School of Veterinary Medicine are proud to recognize the success and achievements of our students, faculty, and staff,” said Dr. Neil Olson, dean of the SVM, in the final welcoming remarks to kick off the night and begin the presentation of awards.

This semester’s awards are as follows:

Outstanding Colleague Awards 

Term 1 : Stephanie West

Term 2: Andrew Richterkessing

Term 3: Treg Brown

Term 4: Maureen Kruhlak

Term 5: Madison Kucinick

Term 6: Yvonne White

Dean Olson’s Award for Academic Excellence 

Joshua Fornengo, Jennifer Maguire, Emily Schafsteck, Paige Coughlin, Jacob Dempsey, Brenda Ruiz Anaya, Ericah Roncone

Adrienne Lotton Memorial Award 

Sheriden Nicholes

Zoetis Revolution Awards of Excellence

Small Animal Internal Medicine: Ida Yates-Lavery

Small Animal Surgery: Sheriden Nicholes

Equine Medicine and Surgery: Chloe Eaton

Food Animal Medicine and Surgery: Thomas Ramsey

Scholarship of Service: Tyler Epes

Surgery Team: Alexa Cameron, Acacia Johnson, Andrew Yacoub, Stephanie Smick

Student Research Award: Sara Schectman

SVM Alumni Scholarship Award

Madison Whitney

Giant Paws Giant Hearts Foundation “Hercules” Award

Sheriden Nicholes

PAWS Recognition Sixth Term Facilitators

Patrick Donegan, Ireny Barsoum, Brittany Riddick, Parveen Hothi, Michelle Mordukhaev

Feral Cat Project

Most Valuable Trapper: Emily Shin

Most Valuable Faculty/Staff: Dr. Wayne Sylvester

Veterinary Public Health Committee

One Health One Medicine Community Leader Award: Mallory Peak

SGUSVM Large Animal Society

Ace of Initiative Award: Melitsa Iaonnou

Most Valuable E-Board Member: Megan Gilmore

Student Chapter of the Society for Theriogenology

Therio-Hero: Ashley Emmett

Top Dam: Amanda Rottman Torres

AAARF: Angels in Armor Animal Rescue Fund

Friends of AAARF Award: Tyler Epes

SCACVIM: Student Chapter of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine

Internal Medicine MVP Award: Madison Whitney

SVECCS: Student Chapter of the Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Society

Outstanding 6th Termer: Shelby Morales

Outstanding Member: Richard Joyce and Taryn Willamson

SNP: Spay Neuter Pothound

Pothound Faculty/Staff Hero Award: Dr. Marta Lanza Perea

Pothound Student Hero Award: Brooke Bray

SCACVP: Student Chapter of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists

The MVP (Most Valuable Pathologist): Glenna Maur

EWS: Exotics & Wildlife Society

The Tenacious Turtle Award: Rayner LeBlanc

EWS Wildest Faculty Award: Dr. Sophie Moittie

VBMA: Veterinary Business Management Association

Outstanding E-Board Member: Letty Bonilla

Impact Award: Meena Khoram Pierce

AWB: Animal Welfare and Behavior Committee

AWB Excellence Award: Jasmine Simmons

SVM Surgery Club

The Sharpest Scalpel Award: Maricella Medina

 SGA: Student Government Association

SGU SVM Outstanding Faculty Term 1-3: Dr. Hector Zerpa

SGU SVM Outstanding Faculty Term 4-6: Dr. Thomas Hanson

SGA SGU Awards of Excellence Term 1-3: Dr. Peter Slinger

SGA SGU Awards of Excellence Term 4-6: Ms. Elizabeth Peach

George B. Daniel Award: Sheridan Nicholes

The Pinckney Parasitology Award

Logan Bernstein

DES Recognition Awards

Amanda Via, Amanda Rottman, Cobi Guilbeau, Courtney Manly, Kira Rasmussen, Taylor Stanton

Alpha Delta Chapter of the Society of Phi Zeta

Spring 2022 Inductees

Term 5: Caitlyn Coartney, Lauren Fleming, Alexandra Garrett, Stephanie Ho, Samantha Hoover, Acacia Johnson, Jennifer Memleb, Madeline Muntean, Teylor Nealy, Samuel Ruch, Valerie Savino

Term 6: Madeleine Christen, Zachary Collette, Rachel Gray, Ida Yates-Lavery, Jenny Liu, Jenna McCartin, Jacob Moise, Brittany Murray, Jacqueline Nunnelley, Kyle Pinney, Brittany Riddick, Johana Maldonado-Ross, Rachel Uvaydov, Madison Whitney, Marielis Guzman-Sanchez

Faculty Inductees

Veterinary Faculty: Dr. Hector Zerpa and Dr. Mercedes Velazquez de Zerpa

Honorary Faculty: Ms. Janella Edwards

Spring 2022 Phi Zeta Scholarship: Jennifer Memleb

SGUSVM Award for Outstanding Service

Dr. Rolf Larsen

 SGUSVM Outstanding Staff Awards

Technical Staff: Renata Mandbodh-Mitchell

Administrative Staff: Cherry-Ann Lumpriss

Zoetis Distinguished Veterinary Teacher Award

Dr. Stacey Byers

– Sarah Stoss

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SVM Grad Helps Refugees and Pets in Need on Ukraine-Poland Border

Andrew Kushnir, DVM ’19, traveled to Poland in late March to provide on-the-ground support for refugees—and their pets—who have evacuated from war-torn Ukraine.

Andrew Kushnir, DVM ’19, felt a greater calling to help those in need. Dr. Kushnir, a graduate of St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine, traveled to Poland in late March to provide on-the-ground support for refugees—and their pets—who have evacuated from war-torn Ukraine.

Dr. Kushnir, a staff veterinarian at San Diego, CA-based Project Wildlife, teamed with nonprofit organization International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAWglobal) to assist shelters, sanctuaries, and zoos as they handle the influx of animals needing care. He shared why he felt the need to contribute to the relief efforts in the region.

St. George’s University: Where are you located and how did you get involved with IFAWglobal?

Dr. Kushnir: I am currently deployed with IFAW at the Ukrainian-Polish border crossing in Medyka, Poland. When the war in Ukraine started, I immediately started reaching out to every organization I could find that was providing support for animals in conflict.

SGU: Was it a difficult decision to make this commitment?

Dr. Kushnir: My father and his family were once refugees fleeing Ukraine during World War II, and I knew that I had to step up in whatever capacity I could to help support people fleeing conflict. We veterinarians don’t just help animals; we also help people through animals.

Being here on the border providing food, water, pet carriers, food bowls, fresh bedding, and warm clothes to pets really makes a huge impact on refugees. Along with getting the peace of mind of a vet looking over their animals, these displaced people have a little bit less to have to worry about as they move onwards to their next destination.

SGU: How will your training as a veterinarian translate to field medicine like this and on people?

Dr. Kushnir: Veterinarians are used to working in scenarios where one has to get creative with the tools available to achieve the most optimal outcome. So triaging stressed, injured, and sick animals out of a tent approximately 100 feet from the border of a war-ravaged country isn’t totally out of the scope of what I and other veterinarians are trained to do.

SGU: How would you describe your emotions now that you’re seeing the strife firsthand?

Dr. Kushnir: Since being here at the refugee camp, I have felt the full kaleidoscope of human emotions. Every moment here, I am surrounded by an endless stream of people seeking shelter and safety from war, who have had to pack their entire lives into a few suitcases and grocery bags. When they reach the refugee camp, volunteers of humanitarian organizations from all over the world greet them with smiles, warm food and drink, and the assurance that they are safe. For many folks, their pet is family and a great comfort at this time so being able to provide veterinary and supportive care to their critters is an exceptionally profound service to offer.

SGU: Have you done any sort of field medicine like this before?

Dr. Kushnir: Working at animal shelters and wildlife centers, I have a lot of experience treating a variety of animals in field conditions, but working in a refugee camp is a first for me.

SGU: What characteristics does a doctor—of any type—need to have to be able to handle field medicine like this?

Dr. Kushnir: There are many qualities I think a veterinarian/doctor needs to have if they want to feel comfortable working in field/disaster relief settings.

  • Being exceptionally resourceful is important because you’ll need to adapt to a potentially ever-changing environment. For example, the tent you’re examining a scared cat inside of suddenly collapses under the weight of pouring rain and strong winds!
  • Being OK with not having the best tools or medicines available but still being able to tackle the problem as best as you can.
  • Knowing that limitations will surely arise, but nevertheless staying positive and focused on getting the job done.

SGU: How has your training at SGU prepared you for this type of front line aid?

Dr. Kushnir: Studying at SGU and living in Grenada definitely helped me build up not just my foundation of knowledge and comfort in a clinical setting, but it also fostered a passion for wanting to work with the most vulnerable animal populations in whatever environment they’re found. The investment is great, and the rewards are greater!

 

 

 

— Laurie Chartorynsky

 

 

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New Class Of Veterinary Students Inducted Into Profession At Spring White Coat Ceremony

St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine formally welcomed aspiring veterinarians from its August 2021 and January 2022 incoming classes into the veterinary medical profession at its virtual White Coat Ceremonies held on March 19-20, 2022.

“The symbolism of putting on the white coat is that you carry now the responsibility of being an [animal] healthcare professional,” said SGU President Dr. G. Richard Olds in his prepared remarks. “You must be thoughtful, caring, and sympathetic in all of your interactions with your clients and individuals that you work with throughout your veterinary medical career.” He praised the veterinarians-in-training for beginning their journey to join more than 2,100 School of Veterinary Medicine graduates.

The White Coat Ceremony has become an important ritual symbolizing a student’s induction into the veterinary profession. At the beginning of each new term, students are cloaked in a white coat—sometimes by family members or mentors who have become veterinarians before them—and then affirm an oath of commitment to the profession by agreeing to uphold its highest ethical and professional standards. SGU embraced the White Coat Ceremony in 2001.

Serving as this year’s keynote speaker, Dr. Calvin Johnson, dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Auburn University and past president of the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges applauded the veterinary medical students for choosing SGU in hopes of one day adding to the University’s legacy of graduating top-notch veterinarians into the global healthcare system through its Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program.

 

“The white coat as you know now is far more than a garment. It symbolizes a milestone that you’ve reached in your journey from being an interested observer in veterinary medicine to being a fully immersed member of the veterinary medical community.”

 

“The white coat as you know now is far more than a garment,” Dr. Johnson said. “It symbolizes a milestone that you’ve reached in your journey from being an interested observer in veterinary medicine to being a fully immersed member of the veterinary medical community. Pursue your education with tremendous energy and enthusiasm. Your time has come and your prospects for professional success and personal fulfillment are unlimited.”

SVM dean Dr. Neil C. Olson also congratulated the Class of 2026 on taking the first step in realizing their dreams of becoming veterinarians. He added that he looked forward to congratulating the new students on their graduation day and working with them as future alumni, as they navigate through the challenges and opportunities that may surface as they work towards their DVM degree.

“The experiences you will have at St. George’s University will serve to enrich you, personally and professionally,” Dr. Olson said. “You have all worked diligently to become veterinary medical students, and I wish you every success as you strive to excel in the pursuit of the knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary for your career.”

– Ray-Donna Peters

 

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SGU Veterinarians Secure Postgraduate Training Positions in VIRMP Match

Students and graduates of St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine will go on to take the next step in their careers this spring.  Forty-two SGU-trained veterinarians will begin specialized training in both internship and residency positions, according to 2022 data from the Veterinary Internship & Residency Matching Program (VIRMP).

SGU students and grads achieved an overall match rate of 76 percent which compares favorably to the average match rate for all schools—including US schools. SGU’s match rate is also highest among Caribbean veterinary schools.

“We are thrilled that so many SGU veterinary graduates will be able to enhance their training through these exciting internship and residency opportunities,” said Dr. Neil Olson, dean of the SVM. “We wish them the best of luck as they start their postgraduate learning and know they are committed to their profession and to providing excellent animal care.”  Starting in June, newly matched graduates will continue their advanced training in fields such as large animal surgery, neurology, oncology, emergency medicine, and exotic animals, among others. These positions are situated at such prestigious institutions as Tufts University, University of Florida, Cornell University, and Michigan State University and several other universities within the SVM’s network of clinical affiliates.

Students and grads expressed their excitement at starting their upcoming postgraduate positions.

Gurcharan Chrai, DVM ‘21
Emergency and Critical Care
University of Florida

“When I was in vet school, I was sure that I wanted to pursue zoo medicine. During my small animal rotating internship, I became drawn to ECC. I am fascinated with the medicine and the complexity of the cases. With much encouragement from my mentors, I decided to go for it and am so excited that I matched at my first choice!”

 

Tori Cleaver, DVM ‘21
Dermatology
Animal Dermatology Clinic, Tustin, CA

“I initially found myself drawn to dermatology at SGU during the classroom lecture series as well as the sixth term dermatology selective. That interest developed into a passion as I began to see cases during my clinical year at the University of Florida and my rotating internship at Friendship Hospital for Animals in Washington, DC. My special interests within the field include allergic diseases and cutaneous manifestations of systemic diseases. I cannot wait for the next chapter in my career as I achieve my dream of becoming a veterinary dermatologist!”

Lelia Barden, DVM ’20
Radiology
Ohio State

“When I started veterinary school, I wanted to be a surgeon. My passion for radiology started in my third year when I was doing an equine externship in Kentucky. The mentor I was working with took me to the Fasig-Tipton sales for thoroughbreds. I loved every moment and saw a lot of myself in my mentor. Since then, I’ve pursued a path in radiology. My area of interest is in musculoskeletal ultrasound for horses and small animals.”

– Paul Burch

 

 

 

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Celebrating Black History Month: SVM students and grads eager to pave the way for change

From the deep South to down under: How this SVM grad found “the place to be”

Vet cardiologist inspired to strengthen animal and human bond

SGU Announces Direct Admissions Partnership with George Brown College 

St. George’s University is pleased to announce a new direct admissions partnership with George Brown College. The program offers two pathways for qualified George Brown graduates to gain immediate entry into the St. George’s University Schools of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine.

“Both Canada and the United States are facing acute shortages of doctors and veterinarians,” said Dr. G Richard Olds, president of St. George’s University. “This partnership will provide aspiring doctors and vets the education and skills they need to serve their communities.”

“SGU is very proud of this new Canadian partnership, and we are looking forward to a strong and productive relationship for many years to come,” said Chuck Furey, director of admissions for Canada at SGU. “Our students will benefit greatly from the wonderful expertise across both institutions.”

George Brown students who finish the Pre-Health Sciences Pathway, submit two letters of recommendation, complete an interview, and meet all necessary admissions and grade requirements will progress into one of two pathways at St. George’s.

Students with at least a 3.2 grade point average may enroll in the five-year Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program. Those with a grade point average of at least 3.4 and a competitive MCAT or GRE score will be eligible to enter the four-year Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program.

Qualified medical students will have the opportunity to spend their first year at Northumbria University in the United Kingdom or on the St. George’s University campus in Grenada. All medical students spend their second year in Grenada and their third- and fourth-year clinical rotations at affiliated hospitals in the United States or the United Kingdom, with elective opportunities available in locations across Canada.

Qualified veterinary students will spend their first three years on the St. George’s campus in Grenada before undertaking their final clinical year at affiliated hospitals in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland, or the Netherlands.

“At St. George’s, we offer our students the opportunity to pursue a truly international education,” Dr. Olds said.

“We are excited to partner with St. George’s to help our students to pursue their career goals,” said Alex Irwin, director of transitional education at George Brown. “The direct admissions program provides a valuable pathway to medical school for our students, and offers one more compelling reason for promising students to consider George Brown College.”

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Celebrating Black History Month: SVM Students and Grads Eager to Pave the Way for Change

Students and graduates of St. George’s University School of Veterinary Medicine who identify as Black or African American are keenly aware that they are on the vanguard of a field of medicine where they have been traditionally underrepresented. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Black or African American-employed veterinarians make up just 1.2 percent of the total employed in this occupation.

In honor of Black History Month, SGU News spoke with several students and a graduate from the School of Veterinary Medicine about what inspired them to take up veterinary medicine, the challenges of being a minority in the field, and how they can bring new meaning to the celebration of Black History Month. Our panel included:

  • Shannon Carmichael, DVM ’10, Forever Vets Animal Hospital, Jacksonville, FL,
  • Term 5 SVM student Antonia M. Nickleberry, president of SGU’s Veterinarians as One Inclusive Community for Empowerment (VOICE), and
  • Term 5 SVM student Teylor Nealy, vice president of VOICE.

St. George’s University: What inspired you to enter the field of veterinary medicine? 

Dr. Shannon Carmichael: Despite no one in my family being in the medical/veterinary field or growing up with pets, I developed a passion for healthcare and animals at a very young age.

Antonia M. Nickleberry: I have always had a passion for animals and their welfare. As a child, I was surrounded by animals of various species and saw the love they harbored for humans. Today, I’m more aware of the importance of mental health and the connection animals have to the mental stability of many of us. It’s so important to care for animals because that, in turn, is being there and caring for the humans who love them.

Teylor Nealy: I have never wanted to do anything else. I have always had a keen interest in animals and the multitude of species, each having their own unique characteristics. During this journey my shadowing experiences have afforded me the ability to hone-in on the specific field in which I want to begin my career, which is emergency medicine. It has not been an easy journey, but it has been humbling and rewarding in so many ways. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for me.

Dr. Shannon Carmichael, DVM ’10, Forever Vets Animal Hospital, Jacksonville, FL

SGU: What do you see as the biggest challenges ahead for Black women in veterinary medicine?

Dr. Carmichael: As a member of a minority, one of the greatest challenges is overcoming stereotypes and negative perceptions, especially along the path to becoming a veterinarian. There is a constant need to prove yourself worthy of a client’s trust and occasional awkward pauses when you introduce yourself as the doctor.

Ms. Nickleberry: Assuming leadership positions at major veterinary hospitals and businesses is a major challenge. Having people of color in leadership positions there will result in increased representation, which can lead to more opportunity for those within those populations. This is what will drive the increase of diversity that we need within the field of veterinary medicine.

Another challenge we face is respect from not only clients, but also our colleagues. Women, overall, have constant struggles with respect in the workplace. I believe these challenges can only be alleviated if those in authoritative positions within the field take a firm, no-tolerance stand against any client, customer, or colleague that treats their employees differently based on their race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, etc.

Ms. Nealy: I feel the best way to fight prejudices and biases is to have an open and honest dialogues even though that is typically uncomfortable for so many people. I can personally attest to incidents I have experienced in past workplaces such as microaggressions and passive prejudices. In one instance, I reported an incident to the manager on duty and she merely replied, “Wow that sucks.” Yes, it sucked, but I wanted to know what she was going to do about it. I felt devalued and witnessed how acceptable this type of behavior is to most people. She truly had no idea how I felt at that very moment as a person and a professional.

Antonia M. Nickleberry, SVM student and VOICE president

SGU: What are some of the positive changes you are witnessing in terms of opportunity and respect for Black veterinarians?

Dr. Carmichael: I am seeing more engagement and veterinary companies becoming involved in Black History Month and Black Lives Matter movements. There are also more veterinary tv shows that feature African American and other minorities. As the veterinary industry and mainstream media brings light to minorities in the industry more opportunities will become available.

Black History Month: SOM students and grads hope to inspire next generation of doctors

SGU: During your time serving as president of VOICE, what are some of the positive changes (in terms of opportunity, respect in the field, etc.) that you witnessed (perhaps among your fellow students or the field at large)?

Ms. Nickleberry: In my time serving as president of VOICE of SGU, the field has begun to make a shift in understanding the need for and importance of diversity within the field of veterinary medicine. With diversity comes shared cultures, traditions, and ideas that can bring us together, which will allow us to be better healthcare providers to our patients.

Teylor Nealy, SVM student and VOICE vice president

SGU: How will you celebrate Black History Month?

Dr. Carmichael: Black History Month is important to me because it is the culmination of the contributions of all different types of people. And recognizing the perspectives and contributions of different groups of people will help us appreciate diversity, defeat stereotypes, and understand our mistakes as a community and build on our successes. I enjoy celebrating black history month by sharing a daily black history fact with friends and families.

Ms. Nealy: I will celebrate Black History Month by reminding myself of how far our people have come. I am grateful every month for the sacrifices my people made to pave the way for me to make it possible for me to pursue my dreams. My dreams are a way for me to show my gratitude to the many who made and paid the ultimate sacrifice.  I am honored to be able to build a legacy for my family and be a role model for little Black girls to look up to, never allowing them to forget our struggles.

 

— Paul Burch

Related Articles:

3 SGU grads changing the face of veterinary medicine

VOICE: Championing diversity in the veterinary profession at the student level

5 stories that chronicled the School of Veterinary Medicine in 2021

 

 

 

From the Deep South to Down Under: How this SVM grad found “the place to be”

What’s it like to work as a veterinarian serving rural farmland communities in New Zealand? Just ask Elizabeth Flatt, BSc, DVM ’20, who grew up in Georgia and is now an associate veterinarian at VetSouth in Gore, New Zealand.

St. George’s University: Why did you choose to move to New Zealand?

Dr. Flatt: I asked Google! I remember being in my clinical year at Mississippi State University, sitting at a local coffee shop, trying to decide what I was going to do next. Veterinary medicine is so versatile, and as a new grad you are especially malleable. So, I focused on location and extracurricular activities. I wanted to live abroad—specifically somewhere where I could kitesurf and snowboard within a two-hour drive. Google said New Zealand.

It was great timing! I arrived pre-COVID, and this has been the place to be. Thanks, Google!

SGU: What types of animals do you treat there?

Dr. Flatt: VetSouth is a mixed-animal practice that is a part of the VetNZ Ltd., where the philosophy is all about looking after our team, providing premium animal welfare, and making rural communities better by giving back to the regions that support us. This also means that many of our veterinarians are shareholders, ensuring the focus stays local, and our animals, clients, and people are prioritized. I have been with this company for 18 months now and they remain true to their philosophy.

The large animal work is primarily cattle, sheep, horses, and even deer. We also treat pigs and camelids on occasion.

The small animal work is primarily working dogs. Huntaways and heading dogs seem to be Kiwi farmers’ breeds of choice. They are New Zealand-originated breeds. They are especially needed in hill country where not even four-wheelers or horses can easily maneuver. That said, in the last decade, pets such as dogs, cats, exotics, and chickens have increasingly made a presence here—sadly, no snakes as there are none in New Zealand.

 

“SGU provided me with a solid foundation of veterinary medicine. Every case is unique. Veterinarians must rely on their foundation to develop a plan on how to best approach each case.”

SGU: As an associate veterinarian, what are some of the key responsibilities that you have?

Dr. Flatt: In Gore, there are four strictly “smallie” vets, with me as the only full-time small animal veterinarian. The closest specialist referral center is nearly seven hours away in Christchurch. So, oftentimes, you and your team are the only option. Fortunately, we have a wide variety of diagnostic and surgical capabilities. We have CR and DR x-rays, ultrasound, scopes, in-house blood machines, etc.

My main areas of specialty include ultrasound procedures, reproductive assistance, soft tissue surgery, and internal and emergency medicine. I have been receiving referrals from surrounding clinics to perform various ultrasound and ultrasound-guided procedures. Also, I do a significant amount of artificial insemination around the Southland and Otago regions during breeding season.

SGU: Best day so far at the clinic?

Dr. Flatt: It was around 7:30pm when the emergency text came through: “Cat stuck in grill.” A cat got struck by a vehicle and became lodged in the grill of the car. There was a penetrating chest wound that had to get surgically closed. It was merely a puncture from the outside. From the inside, however, the whole intercostal space was shredded top to bottom. I had to wire the adjacent ribs together and place a chest drain. The best part is that the surgery was a success and the cat lives on. The coolest part is that I felt a beating heart.

SGU: What excites you about practicing veterinary medicine?

Dr. Flatt: The absolute best is being able to fix a patient and get them back home and into action. The second-best part is providing those unfixable patients with a quality of life for their remaining time. This, ultimately, makes you an integral part of their family and business. I love being able to serve people in such ways.

SGU: What is an issue in the field of veterinary medicine that is important to you?

Dr. Flatt: Improving work-life balance. Being an American, I work until I burn out. New Zealanders are huge on work-life balance. We have built-in “tea breaks” twice a day and a one-hour lunch break. Sure, we may not always get those breaks, but this is a priority implemented by VetSouth and our managers. I admire this and wish more of the international veterinary industry prioritized this.

SGU: Three key qualities to be a good veterinarian?

Dr. Flatt: Critical thinking, people skills, and adaptability.

SGU: What are your plans for the future? 

Dr. Flatt: In the immediate future: I am here until at least July 2023. Over the long term, I would love to open my own specialty veterinary clinic and further my seedstock operation.

SGU: How did SGU prepare you for a career as a veterinarian?

Dr. Flatt: SGU provided me with a solid foundation of veterinary medicine. It is impossible to teach a student everything about veterinary medicine. Every case is unique. Veterinarians must rely on their foundation to develop a plan on how to best approach each case.

SGU: Best piece of advice for SVM students?

Dr. Flatt: Take time to enjoy the present. As a student we often get so fixated on what’s to come that we neglect to appreciate what’s around us now.

 

 

– Laurie Chartorynsky

 

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SGU Announces Partnership with University of North Alabama

St. George’s University has announced a new direct-admission partnership with the University of North Alabama. The program establishes a pathway for qualified North Alabama graduates to gain immediate entry to the St. George’s Schools of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine.

“We’re excited to team up with the University of North Alabama to educate a new generation of doctors and vets,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of St. George’s University. “Our program offers students a seamless transition along the way to these vital professions, both of which are currently facing extreme shortages.”

The partnership establishes a “4+4” program, in which students spend four years at each institution. Those who wish to qualify must express their interest at the time they apply to the University of North Alabama. To ensure they can proceed to St. George’s, students must complete all undergraduate coursework, meet minimum grade point averages, and score competitively on the Medical College Admission Test or the Graduate Record Examination. St. George’s University will waive application fees and fast-track students in the program for application review, interviews, and admission decisions.

All students in the program offered medical school admission are guaranteed a $10,000 scholarship.

UNA graduation

Those who enter St. George’s University School of Medicine will be eligible to complete their first two years of study in Grenada, or they can complete their first year at Northumbria University in the United Kingdom and second year in Grenada. The following two years of clinical rotations will take place at St. George’s-affiliated hospitals in the United States or United Kingdom, with elective opportunities available in Canada. Veterinary students will be eligible to complete three years of study in Grenada and their final clinical year within SGU’s network of 30-plus affiliates located in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland, and the Netherlands.

“At St. George’s, we make it possible for our students to pursue a truly international education,” Dr. Olds said. “We’re eager to welcome students from the University of North Alabama to our community.”

“We are pleased to offer our students this opportunity to accelerate their careers,” said Dr. Chunsheng Zhang, senior vice provost for international affairs at UNA. “The direct admissions program will dramatically simplify the graduate school admissions process at a time when new veterinarians and doctors are desperately needed.”

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SGU Announces Direct-Admission Partnership with Beal University

Today, St. George’s University announced a new direct-admission partnership with Beal University in Bangor, Maine. The new program establishes a pathway for qualified Beal graduates to gain immediate entry into the St. George’s Schools of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine.

“We’re excited to team up with Beal University to educate new doctors and veterinarians at a time when these professions are in such high demand,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of St. George’s University.

The partnership establishes a “3+4” program that enables students to complete their undergraduate and graduate degrees in just seven years. Students who wish to qualify must express their interest when they apply to Beal University, where they will complete a three-year bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences.

To ensure they can proceed to St. George’s, students must complete all undergraduate coursework, meet minimum grade point averages, and score competitively on requisite graduate entrance exams. Veterinary students should also have completed the recommended 500 hours of animal experience. St. George’s University will waive application fees and fast-track students in the combined degree program for application review, interviews, and admission decisions.

Those who enter St. George’s University School of Medicine will be eligible to complete their first two years of study in Grenada, or they can complete their first year at Northumbria University in the United Kingdom and second year in Grenada. The following two years of clinical rotations will take place at St. George’s-affiliated hospitals in the United States or United Kingdom, with elective opportunities available in Canada. Veterinary students will be eligible to complete three years of study in Grenada and their final clinical year within SGU’s network of 30-plus affiliates located in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland, or the Netherlands.

“We take pride in preparing students for both US-based and international careers,” Olds said.

“Our new partnership with St. George’s gives Beal students a tremendous opportunity,” said Sheryl DeWalt, president of Beal University. “It puts them on an accelerated career path and ensures a smooth transition from undergraduate work to medical training.”

St. George’s University Announces Partnership with St. Francis College

St. George’s University announced today two new programs that will allow qualified pre-medicine or pre-veterinary students at St. Francis College in Brooklyn, NY, to gain streamlined admission to the St. George’s University Schools of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine.

“We are excited to establish our first pathway program in New York City,” said Dr. G. Richard Olds, president of St. George’s University. “As the COVID-19 pandemic has shown, New York faces a shortage of physicians. We look forward to welcoming aspiring doctors from St. Francis and equipping them with the skills and knowledge they’ll need to serve their communities.”

Students in the “4+4” program will complete their four-year undergraduate degree at St. Francis in a pre-medicine or pre-veterinary medicine program and proceed directly to medical school at St. George’s in Grenada. Those pursuing a Doctor of Medicine degree, the final two years of this combined program consist of clinical rotations at SGU’s affiliated hospitals in the United States and/or the United Kingdom. The final year of the combined Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program consists of clinical rotations at SGU’s affiliated veterinary schools in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and/or Ireland.

Exceptional pre-medicine students can qualify for the “3+4” program, under which they complete their degrees in three years and then move onto medical school at St. George’s before spending the final two (2) years in clinical rotations at hospitals affiliated with SGU.

Students who wish to participate in one of the direct admissions partnerships must indicate their interest upon applying to St. Francis. Qualified students will be prioritized for interviews and admissions decisions, provided they meet the admissions criteria for both schools.

In order to proceed to St. George’s, applicants must maintain a 3.4 grade point average at St. Francis and obtain a competitive score on the MCAT. A 3.2 grade point average and competitive score on the GRE are required for entry into the St. George’s veterinary program.

Students accepted into the medical program will receive a $10,000 scholarship upon matriculating at St. George’s.

“We look forward to a very productive partnership with St. George’s University. Offering our students a direct pathway into advanced programs in medicine and veterinary science strengthens our commitment to support our students to reach their personal and career goals,” states SFC President Miguel Martinez-Saenz.

 

 

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