Vital Signs: August 2013

Vol. 2, Issue 1

A Fresh Start

Dear friends and colleagues,

When I last wrote to you, the college was celebrating its 30th annual commencement ceremony for our Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students. Our Master of Public Health program had just received good news about its accreditation. It is hard to believe that another summer has passed and we have once again started a new academic year.

Students returned to campus following a busy summer for us! If you are in Blacksburg, you may already have noticed the new hardwood floors, decorative displays of radiograph images, upholstered chairs, dining-style booths, new refrigerators, and microwaves when you enter our commons area. Construction crews finished renovations just in time for the arrival of the new class, and students and faculty alike are already enjoying the new look. Next summer, we will complete the remainder of the library-commons renovations and have a truly attractive space for the entire college community to learn, collaborate, and relax.

When the Class of 2017 joined the college this month, its members brought with them a wealth of life experiences and skills. They include a pilot, an opera singer, an actress, several musicians, artists, skilled equestrians, and so on. We were pleased to continue our tradition of welcoming this talented group to the college with a week of orientation activities and a matriculation ceremony. Hundreds of family, friends, faculty, staff, and others joined our first-year students as we formally welcomed them to the profession as students. Now that they have received their white coats and stethoscopes, they will begin their four-year journeys to become veterinarians.

The new class joins our second-, third-, and fourth-year students at an exciting time for the college. As previously announced, I am stepping down from my position after 10 years as both interim dean and dean. Dr. Cyril Clarke, who is currently dean of Oregon State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, will become the college’s fourth dean effective Oct. 1. As a leader in veterinary medical education, Dr. Clarke has a strong vision for the college’s future. I, like you, am looking forward to seeing his vision come to fruition in the coming years.

Best regards,

Gerhardt G. Schurig, DVM, Ph.D.

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