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Oklahoma State University
Center for Veterinary Health Sciences

Healthy Animals - Healthy People

Class of 2018 Transitions to Clinics

Thursday, May 4 2017

nick and larry thompson

The class of 2018 recently attended a Transition Ceremony to mark the completion of their first three years of the DVM program and the beginning of their clinical rotations at Oklahoma State University’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences.

“This is where the students move out of the classroom and laboratory and transition into the professional arena,” said Dr. Daniel Burba, equine surgeon and interim head of the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences. “They are going to experience what veterinary medicine truly is and what it means to be a doctor.”

The class of 2018 will spend the next year going through 17 three-week clinical rotations at the center’s Veterinary Medical Hospital. Here they will gain hands-on experience and hone their clinical and communication skills. Here are some comments from class members.

“I’m so excited but I’m also really scared,” says Miranda Anthony of Fayetteville, Ark. “It was probably around 8th grade that I wanted to be a vet so I’m really excited to finish through what I’ve always wanted to do. I’m looking forward to actually being able to apply all the knowledge I’ve learned throughout the three years I’ve been in school and to learn exactly what it means to be a real veterinarian.”

“I knew that I wanted to be a veterinarian at a later stage of my life,” says Jeff Olivarez of Edmond, Okla. “Going to college I soon realized that this was what I wanted to do so I switched majors into pre-vet and the rest is history. It really hasn’t set in that I am going to be out of the classroom and going to be an almost doctor for a whole year. I’m scared, nervous, excited and just ready to be out of the classroom for sure.”

“I’m just excited to be here and I can’t wait to start clinics and I’m ready for the next chapter,” says Kristen Rivers of Broken Arrow, Okla. “I think my parents would tell you that they knew at a very young age that I wanted to become a veterinarian. I would have a lot of animals in my pockets—crickets, lizards, something—and my mom would make me dump my pockets out before I came in the door. There’s a lot of emotions right now. I am nervous and excited and overwhelmed. A little scared – actually a lot scared to be honest with you but mostly today feeling proud. I cannot believe I’m going into my last year of clinics. It feels like yesterday I started my first year and here we are. So I’m really excited for today.”

“My father is a veterinarian so I grew up around it,” says Nick Thompson of Coalgate, Okla., son of Dr. Larry Thompson, 1981 graduate of Oklahoma State’s veterinary program. “I don’t see fourth year being something that’s going to be incredibly difficult. It’s just something you have to do to graduate and get your DVM. I’m not really one to want to sit around too much. Just the fact that I’ll be up and around, seeing patients and actually doing something with this knowledge I’ve learned will be enormously better than having to sit in a classroom for four or five hours a day.”

“I encourage the class of 2018 to experience everything you possibly can in your fourth year of veterinary medicine,” advises Dr. Burba. “This is a time when you are developing your skills, your knowledge and applying that to when you get out into the real world.”

Pictured top right: Nick Thompson being coated by his father and OSU alumnus, Dr. Larry Thompson.