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alumnae Spotlight: Casey Cadile ’91 Looking back, it isn’t surprising that Casey Cadile has dedicated her professional life to animals of all kinds. At a very young age, her mom drove her back and forth to the Academy of Sciences so she could take classes on bugs and animals. At 14, she began volunteering at the San Francisco Zoo Education Program on the Nature Trail and went on to spend ten years teaching visitors about habitat conservation, endangered species, and environmental issues. She also worked with the Raptor Program and focused on condor breeding. At Castilleja, she took every advanced science and math class the school offered, and found her passion further fueled by inspiring teachers like Mrs. Meece. Casey attended Cornell University and studied chemistry and cell biology while continuing her interest in the injured birds of prey at the Cornell Raptor Barn. She determined that she wanted to be a “hard core” bench research scientist in veterinary medicine and entered the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois right after graduating from college. With her outstanding background in cell biology, she quickly determined her interest in oncology research. After internships in Illinois and back at Cornell, she moved to San Mateo, where she began a medical oncology residency with Veterinary Medical Specialists (SAGE) and Michigan State University. Her interest in oncology became more personal during veterinary school when she herself successfully battled breast cancer and her father passed away from metastatic melanoma. Casey completed her residency in 2007 and was welcomed as one of seven oncologists at SAGE in San Mateo. She works with dogs and cats, coordinating their radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy treatments with a total treatment approach. While she misses research, Casey says that the thing that inspires her most about her work is her patients, and she does stay in touch with human oncology research and genetic causes for breed-related cancers. Outside of the office she is an avid snowboarder. She gets up to Kirkwood several times a month during the season, and also enjoys back-country camping in the Eastern Sierras during the summer. Asked about any advice that she has for others who are hoping to pursue veterinary medicine, she suggests taking a rigorous science course-load and getting hands-on clinical experience, not necessarily just in a veterinary office. “Be persistent,” she says. “It may take more than one try to understand something, or to get into school, or secure an internship, but if you are following your passions, it is well worth the effort.” 44 | full circle

Full Circle Spring 2011

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