Diversity at the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine

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Goal One: Build an inclusive college community and a culture of pride and integrity. 2016-2020 Stratetic Plan



The NC State University College

Diversity in all of its forms

of Veterinary Medicine wants

enriches our community and

you! We welcome the diversity

benefits our profession. We

that you bring and want to

cannot truly Think and Do

include it in our culture.

the Extraordinary without welcoming and considering

We understand and appreciate

a broad range of voices and

the value of a diverse team and know that without it,


we cannot achieve our goal of becoming excellent. We agree to accept everyone’s differences and will

In our outreach, hiring, admissions and curriculum,

treat each other as we desire to be treated ourselves.

we seek to build and sustain a welcoming community that reflects the diversity of North Carolina and the

Our community is working toward the common goal

world. We also recognize that the benefit of a diverse

of “thinking before doing” to become the best that

community is only fully realized when we include and

we can be. We hope that you will join us.

value one another.

Allen Cannedy

Laura Nelson

Director of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs

Associate Dean and Director of Academic Affairs

A DESTINY FULFILLED Veterinary medicine is not something Shayla Jackson wanted to do. It’s something she always said she had to do. But as vet school inched closer, she got news she never expected. During the pivotal time between the spring semester of junior year and the beginning of senior year, her father was diagnosed with colon cancer. It turned out to be Stage 3. Up until that point, she had done everything right. Her GPA while earning an animal sciences degree at North Carolina A&T State University had been stellar. Her resume was already stacked with impressive internships. She had an ER veterinary assistant fulltime job requiring 45-minute commutes back to campus at 1 a.m. Even though her GPA began to dip, she refused to tell her parents that she was struggling, both emotionally and academically. She never asked for help, but instead felt she needed to help them. Jackson’s mom has multiple sclerosis, and she was worried that the stress would exacerbate her condition. Then she was told that, because of the lower GPA, she could no longer be a part of the Food Animal Scholars program, which had guaranteed a spot at the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine after graduation. Jackson forged forward with an alternative. She called Elanco, the animal pharmaceutical company she had a wonderful internship experience with during college. She asked for a job, and her connections came together to craft a position specifically for her. She accepted. She was ready to go to work right after graduation, with no debt and a good salary in the industry she wanted to be in. She greatly appreciated the job — and was excited to start. But soon, she’d call Elanco again and tell them that unfortunately she would have to turn it down. She was going to go where she always thought she belonged.

PUSHING FORWARD Another email would change her path again. Jackson got it after interviewing at another veterinary school — she had applied to three times before being dropped from the scholarship program. Driving back from the school to North Carolina with her dad, Jackson was told that she was accepted to be part of the CVM Class of 2021. Later, she’d learn the other school wanted her, too. “My mom and my dad, everyone I would tell the nonvet school plan to, they would all say, ‘Oh, are you sure?’ They just felt it. I felt it. It wasn’t right,” Jackson said. “I felt validated after that, like, vet school was where I definitely should be.” The brush with a vanishing dream made the acceptance news even sweeter — and she bounced back academically. The final semester of her senior year was one of her most challenging, but grades-wise one of her strongest. There was a renewal of spirit and a refocus on the type of veterinary career she wanted.

“I got into veterinary school with the help and support of my family and some of my closest friends, through endless conversations with A&T faculty and with lots of prayer and my faith,” said Jackson. “They wanted to see me succeed and helped me regain my confidence.” Though no longer bound to focus on food animals while at the CVM, she’s still very much interested in them. “I love the big guys,” she said. “I appreciate them.” Jackson didn’t grow up on a farm or have any agriculture experience before starting undergrad. She was born and raised in West Palm Beach, Fla., where lizards and frogs were the most common animals she

encountered. But she has always loved the outdoors and at A&T felt at home on farms, working with pigs and other animals. “I loved animals, so I think I thought, oh, I’ll be a dog and cat vet — that’s really all I had known veterinarians as,” said Jackson, who moved with her family to Greensboro when she was 13. “Once I got to undergrad, the entire world of the profession of veterinary medicine cracked open. From that point on, I just wanted to explore. I still do.”

MORE THAN READY Jackson entered the CVM Class of 2021 with an infectious happiness. Helping her transition to vet school is the fact that her father’s cancer is in remission. “I’m thinking about how much it has changed me and caused me to have such a more positive outlook on things,” Jackson said. “Looking at my father go through everything and keep a positive spirit and sense of humor had a big impact. So when people say that school is going to be difficult, I say that it’s going to be hard, but it’s not the end of the world. It’s going to be amazing and we’re following our dreams and we’re going to be a family.”

“We said the Veterinarian’s Oath at the White Coat Ceremony, and that is already playing in my mind,” she said. “It felt so real in that moment. It charged me up to want to be great as a veterinarian.” Jackson is open to differnt career paths and has some ideas that are not set in stone. She talked about her intention to apply for a scholarship with the United States Department of Agriculture that would mean summers working as a veterinarian in a rural, under-served location or possibly becoming a veterinarian with the military. But what gets Jackson the most excited is, simply, being here.

SCHOLARSHIPS NC State’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid (OSFA) partners with the College of Veterinary Medicine to provide resources for students who otherwise could not afford to compelte their doctor of veterinary medicine degree.

DR. ALFREDA JOHNSON WEBB SCHOLARSHIP This scholarship for students enrolled in the CVM is based on merit and need, with preference given to students with African American, indigenous (American Indian, Native Alaskan or Native Hawaiian) or Hispanic heritage. Awards are for one academic year and may be renewable based on specific criteria. The North Carolina Association of Minority Veterinarians donates $1,000 for two $500 scholarships.

OLD MAIN NATIVE AMERICAN INDIAN SCHOLARSHIP This scholarship is for American Indian students enrolled in the CVM. Awards are made to student(s) in accordance with need-based scholarships. The award is for one academic year and may be renewable based on specific criteria provided by the CVM Scholarship Committee.

GRADUATE SCHOOL DIVERSITY ENHANCEMENT GRANT The purpose of the UNC Campus Scholarship Program and the Diversity Graduate Assistance Grant programs are to promote diversity at the graduate level at NC State University.

INCENTIVE SCHOLARSHIP AWARD This scholarship provides support for students enrolled in the CVM on the basis of financial need and academic merit. In accordance with University diversity policies, preference shall be given to students with Latino/Hispanic heritage. Awards shall be for one academic year and may be renewable at the discretion of the CVM Scholarship Committee.

Visit go.ncsu.edu/cvm-external-scholarships to browse other scholarship opportunities.


SUPPORT At NC State, scholarship support is an important way to alleviate the economic burden of the cost of education. In addition, in-state DVM tuition and fees at NC State are the lowest in the nation, and out-of-state students can achieve in-state status after one year. This gives our graduates tremendous opportunity as they start their careers.

In the past year

262 OF 395 enrolled students applied for scholarships.

84% received

one or more awards. Total Donor and CVM Scholarships

$ 602,380 External Support

$ 91,000 Total Support

$ 693,380

SCHOLARS PROGRAMS Our scholars programs help undergraduates find alternative paths to the doctor of veterinary medicine program at NC State.

FOOD ANIMAL SCHOLARS The Food Animal Scholar Program, a collaboration with the NC State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, provides six undergraduates with an interest in food animal medicine with admission to the CVM provided they meet minimum standards for acceptance established by the Admissions Committee. As part of the program, scholars devise a plan of academic work, experience and mentoring encompassing both undergraduate and veterinary medical education. The program also provides a continuous supply of new veterinary graduates with skills, experience and expertise with food animal species comparable to one year of DVM clinical experience. Graduates will immediately provide valuable service to modern animal agriculture and will be mentally prepared to continuously grow and improve as scientific health professionals.

LABORATORY ANIMAL SCHOLARS The Laboratory Animal Scholar Program is a partnership with NC A&T for students focused on careers in laboratory animal medicine. Students are selected to participate by NC A&T faculty and are extensively mentored through their undergraduate work in collaboration with CVM faculty. Top students are selected for up to two positions in the upcoming class each year dependent on their successful completion of all requirements for admissions. This program provides outstanding opportunities to place students into our DVM classes.

ECOSYSTEMS HEALTH SCHOLARS The Ecosystems Health Scholar Program recruits top students from NC A&T who are interested in fisheries, wildlife or conservation health careers. Students are selected to participate by NC A&T faculty and are extensively mentored through their undergraduate work in collaboration with CVM faculty. Top students are selected for up to two positions in the upcoming class each year dependent

on their successful completion of all requirements for admissions. This program provides outstanding opportunities to place students into our DVM classes.

UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA SYSTEM VETERINARY EDUCATION ACCESS (UNC-SVEA) The pathway to a degree in veterinary medicine can be more challenging for individuals from a rural background, so the CVM’s UNC-SVEA Program supports these students. Participants in the program at UNC campuses not located in central urban areas who meet all criteria of their home institution and the CVM may gain admittance to the program. UNC Pembroke participants: Up to two students plus one alternate from each entering first-year class of UNC Pembroke’s biology program may be selected to enter the UNC-SVEA Program. Students must be enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program in the biology department. Scholar selection is based upon high school performance, standardized tests (SAT), an essay by the applicants indicating their reasons for seeking a career as a veterinarian and two letters of reference. Selection of the scholars will be made by the Selection Committee consisting of the UNC Pembroke biology department program advisors, CVM director for diversity and one additional CVM faculty member as appointed by the Dean of the CVM. UNC-SVEA Scholars can only be selected by mutual consent of both universities.

FISHERIES AND AQUACULTURE SCHOLARS The Fisheries and Aquaculture Scholar Program is geared toward undergraduates majoring in fisheries at NC State interested in fish health careers, especially in the food production aspect of aquatic health like fisheries and aquaculture. Students who enter the program are mentored to combine their fisheries major requirements and DVM pre-requisite courses. They are evaluated on their academic performance and dedication to food production aquatics and are selected by the NC State fisheries faculty in consultation with CVM aquatics faculty. Up to two students could be selected per year for automatic admission dependent on successful completion of admissions requirements each year.

THE SCIENCE OF CLINICS Liara Gonzalez is a clinician-scientist at the College of Veterinary Medicine, which means that she applies science to clinical cases. How has diversity enriched the work you do? I know from my own background how important it is to have different life experiences and training. When you have people from all these different experiences, their approach to a problem is much more progressive than when everybody shares a very similar background. At NC State, I’ve been able to mentor students in a program called the Initiative for Maximizing Student Development, where students of underrepresented backgrounds come and spend time in my laboratory. The exposure to students from all over and having new perspectives helps guide me and gives me new ideas, whether they’re research ideas, teaching ideas or ideas about how to approach things since every student is different. What is special to you about being a part of the CVM? I think the CVM is a place where people from different backgrounds and different interests are embraced. My background is quite a bit different than a fair number of other people. I don’t come from a family of veterinarians. I don’t come from a family where anybody has received a Ph.D. I have a little bit of a different perspective in my career trajectory than perhaps other people, even though I’m sure there

are other people here that share that with me. But everybody has embraced me and encouraged me over all these years. I’m Jewish and also Puerto Rican and I felt very comfortable coming in with my Puerto Rican pride hat and shirts on certain days, as well as recognizing and celebrating Jewish holidays. I think that is something that has helped me feel welcome and comfortable here. What has been the best part about working with CVM students? I love working with the veterinary students. They re-energize me about topics that for me is something that I do so frequently that it becomes less exciting. But when I get to teach a student that technique and it’s new to them and I see that sparkle in their eye and I see how energized they are to learn, that reinvigorates me. I absolutely love teaching. These are students who want to be here and want to be veterinarians. A lot of students come in and they don’t know that they can be a researcher. They don’t know that they can become a basic scientist and you can also work in the clinic. I’m still in the clinic. I’m still treating patients. I’m still talking to owners. I’m still performing surgery, but then I can go upstairs and I can ask questions that might impact those veterinary patients. And I can say that’s much, much more, coming in as a veterinary student, than I ever imagined was the potential for my career as a veterinarian.

PROGRAMS, TRAINING & RESOURCES Diversity is critical to the CVM’s academic mission. New perspectives deepen our understanding, strengthen our community and propel our innovation.

CULTURAL AWARENESS MODULES Several Cultural Awareness Modules are offered each year to expose and educate students, faculty and staff on multicultural issues, populations, practices and other areas. Past topics include Muslim, American Indian, Hispanic and LGBTQ+ cultures.

VOICE The CVM chapter of Veterinary Students as One In Culture and Ethnicity (VOICE) is a studentrun organization that brings sociocultural awareness to the core veterinary curriculum. We are an organized and unified student voice contributing to enhancing the diversity of the profession and the cultural competence of students.

PROJECT SAFE The Project SAFE Ally program is a three-hour workshop designed to help students, staff, faculty and alumni better understand and address the needs of GLBT students. The curriculum addresses a wide range of information, including identity

terms, issues that GLBT students often deal with during the coming out process, concerns that GLBT students face both in and out of the classroom and ways that allies can create more inclusive environments.

NCBI TRAINING The National Coalition Building Institute provides proactive workshops to improve the overall campus climate by building a more inclusive environment. It teaches skills in how to effectively shift prejudicial attitudes and be powerful allies for one another. The team is trained to intervene when tough intergroup conflict arises on the campus or between the campus and the community. The CVM has 100 NCBI trainers on staff who have completed the “Train The Trainer” training session.

OIED WORKSHOPS The NC State Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity offers a variety of training, education and workshops throughout the year. They are free and open to all students, faculty and staff members at NC State.

GREEN ZONE The process of transitioning from the military to civilian life can pose challenges for all service members, veterans and their families. Modeled on the “Safe Zone” program, Green Zone is designed for faculty and staff to receive training about issues facing active service members and student veterans.

NCAMV The North Carolina Association of Minority Veterinarians is dedicated to promoting diversity and collegiality among its members and providing a forum to discuss concerns of minority veterinarians in North Carolina.

BRVSA The Broad Spectrum Veterinary Student Association’s mission is to connect, support and empower a community for LGBTQ+ students and allies across veterinary education. BRVSA strives to counter bigotry and marginalization with positive messages of diversity and inclusion to provide greater support for students.

HOUSE SYSTEM CVM Students are sorted into four houses as part of a collegewide wellness initiative. The houses, which boast groups of students reflecting differences in backgrounds and areas of study, compete to earn points by participating in various campus events. The house model focuses on promoting intellectual growth, mental and emotional health, social development, cultural competence and physical health.

DIVERSITY COMMITTEE Made up of NC State CVM faculty, staff and students, the committee implements programs and promotes inclusion within the college community.

A WHOLE NEW PERSPECTIVE Amanda Bates is the CVM’s new director of career services and professional development, which assists students with career planning and developing positive relationships with prospective employers. The NC State grad brings a global perspective to her role, having lived in such diverse locales as Cameroon, Qatar and Richmond, Va., before joining the CVM. What made you want to go into this field? I have an MBA and a master’s in education counseling, so I’m entrepreneurial, but I also enjoy connecting with people. In a previous job I worked with first-generation low-income students on college access. I’m attracted to working with students because you get to see the results as they work out solutions to the issues they’re dealing with, whether it’s something urgent or more long term. What will you be doing in your new role? I help students prepare for their job search and much more. I help them learn how to network and develop contact with potential employers. Sometimes I help them decide how to prepare for a particular field. Externally, I help recruiters know how to market themselves to students. And I help each of them be aware of the culture with which they are trying to communicate — the student culture and the employer culture.

I’m like a culture translator who helps them meet somewhere in the middle. I also try to engage our alumni as mentors to current students. Another area is communication between generations, because there are differences there, too. I try to help bridge that gap of understanding. What are you most excited about in your new role? Working with students to equip them to guide their own careers and to become engaged with the community. There are more specialties than ever, and the market is always shifting so there are always new challenges to deal with. What is your background? I began my career in Doha, Qatar, and I wanted to focus on the helping professions. I worked at a private non-profit in Richmond called the College Place where I was the college access director. Before coming to the CVM, I was working with students on professional development and job placement at Virginia Commonwealth University.

OUTREACH & COMMUNITY SERVICE The students, faculty and staff of the CVM embrace NC State’s mission of community outreach and engagement. Our representatives are active in the community, state, nation and world.

MIDDLE SCHOOL SUMMER CAMP Every year the College of Veterinary Medicine, in collaboration with East Carolina University, welcomes middle-school students to campus for a week of hands-on activities that help students explore careers in animal health care. Current CVM students serve as camp counselors, including some who are former campers. “This camp showed me it was possible to pursue veterinary medicine and that the potential was there for me,” said Terry Stauffer, Class of 2022. The annual program, now more than a decade old, is sponsored through the McKimmon Center for Extension and Continuing Education.

HIGH SCHOOL VETERINARY CAREERS WORKSHOP This daylong program for high-school students and their parents showcases the diversity of careers available to students interested in veterinary medicine.

FROM DREAMS TO REALITY Born in Taiwan, a small island on the southeast coast of China, Jonathan Ting Lai came to the U.S. when he was 11 years old. Currently a third-year veterinary student at NC State with a mixed animal focus, he can’t wait to become a veterinarian who would treats both larger animals like cows and horses and small animals like dogs and cats. Why did you decide to come to NC State? The combination of academic excellence and affordable tuition made NC State my first choice, very easily. In fact, it made no sense to go anywhere else, even though I was admitted to three other schools. How has NC State encouraged you to Think and Do the Extraordinary? NC State has encouraged me to believe in myself and just do it. When we first started as freshman, I remember that I was really afraid of “What if? What if I fail out? What if I don’t graduate?” But on the first day, and multiple professors tell us each day, “Believe in yourself, just do it.” Now I’m a third-year and I still think about that every day. We’ve gone through so many exams, taken so many practicums, and it’s because we can believe in ourselves, take that initiative to do it and conquer it.

What has been special about your experience here so far? The curriculum here is great in that you get didactics, where you’re in classrooms and they teach you all the details, but then you’re also in all kinds of labs where everything is hands on. In addition to that, the variety of topics that are taught here is really amazing. They teach us everything from large animals to small animals to exotic animals, even fish, snakes, amphibians and everything that you can think about that is animal related. There are also all kinds of ethnicities, cultures, religions and different socioeconomic backgrounds working together. Why is it important for a veterinary student to have exposure to diversity in backgrounds and focus areas? I think diversity is so important for the student body. The way I see it, our nation is incredibly diverse so the student body should be proportionally diverse because that would best prepare us for the real world. Here, we’re already exposed to all kinds of different subjects. Then we really see a diversity here of different ethnicities, cultures and religions. I feel that really prepares students for when we go out to the real world and we see that all the clients and all the animals are so diverse.

“With my class, I really feel like we’re a family. We’re not very clicky or have separated into groups. I think anyone in our class can easily approach someone else and just sit down, have a conversation, relax or hang out. I think the family first aspect has been great for us.”

Wolfpack Wisdom We asked the NC State Veterinary Medicine community: "What do you love about the College of Veterinary Medicine?"

~Ty Smith, Class of 2020

" I really enjoy the mentorship opportunities I get to have with the veterinary students. They really inspire me." ~ Nneka George, Laboratory Animal Clinical Veterinarian

“We have the opportunity to collaborate with various medical and veterinary professionals, so it’s really allowed me to expand my horizon and expand my perspectives on what veterinary medicine can offer from both a research and clinician standpoint. It’s been an extraordinary opportunity to be here.” ~ Morika Williams, Graduate Student

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“Having that overall community has been critical to learning here. And when you feel safe and supported that only promotes my desire to learn and to grow.” ~ Annie Wang, Class of 2022

“What’s special about teaching and working here at NC State is the people and the students. I love my work. I love the people that I work with. Everybody cares deeply about doing a great job.” ~ Teresa DeFrancesco, Professor of Cardiology and Critical Care

“Embracing diversity and inclusion is an integral component of our commitment to excellence in training future scientists and professionals in the field of veterinary medicine.” ~ CVM Diversity Committee


We are committed to sustaining a culture that celebrates inclusion and diversity of all students, faculty and staff at the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine. In fact, we choose to be a culture that values diversity, inclusion, respect, empathy and equality for all. We define inclusion as the practice of intentionally building a culture that values diversity of people and ideas and embraces the meaningful participation of all. We hope the positive lessons of valuing diversity and inclusion will extend well beyond our college community and have broader, far-reaching impacts on the profession of veterinary medicine. We welcome the excellence of


Facebook.com/NCStateVetMed @NCStateVetMed

diversity at our institution.

NC State Veterinary Medicine

Without diversity and inclusion we cannot


achieve excellence.

Learn more at cvm.ncsu.edu/diversity

Our College is situated on the 250-acre Centennial

This brochure was printed for a total cost of $2,174, or $2.17 per copy. No state funds were used. NC State University promotes equal opportunity and prohibits discrimination and harassment based upon one’s age, color, disability, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation and veteran status.

Biomedical Campus (CBC), located near downtown Raleigh and close to the heart of the Research Triangle Park innovation hub. The CBC provides unique opportunities for industry and government researchers and colleagues from other universities to work side by side with CVM faculty and students.

www.cvm.ncsu.edu • PH 919.513.6262 E-mail: DVMInformation@ncsu.edu 1060 William Moore Drive • Raleigh, NC 27607

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