Showcasing Rural Veterinary Medicine
While many graduating veterinary students accept jobs in suburban over rural areas, Texas A&M University’s Veterinary Education, Research & Outreach (VERO) program is encouraging students to take a deeper look at rural veterinary careers.
The Food Animal Production Tour, a decade-old initiative in the VERO program, takes second- and third-year veterinary students on a six-day tour to West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) in Canyon, Texas, where the VERO program is housed.
During the tour, students explore the beef cattle, dairy cattle and swine industries, as well as mixed-animal veterinary practices through visits to local clinics. They also meet with the Texas Cattle Feeders Association and visit a Holstein feedlot, a packing plant and WTAMU’s meat science facility. The tour provides insight into rural veterinary career paths and gives students field experience at WTAMU, located 200 miles from where 30% of the nation’s beef cattle are raised.
“In visiting the area’s dairies and feedlots, they see how these animals are actually cared for and the important leadership role that rural veterinarians play,” said Dr. Dan Posey, VERO academic coordinator.