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Engaging future students at Pre-Health Conference

November 19, 2014

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The Horse Handling Workshops led by Dr. Claudia Sonder was a big hit. For many students this was their first close-up contact with a horse. They learned about safe handling practices and behavior, how to obtain vitals, grooming and palpation.

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Janel Lang offered a workshop on "Professional Tips for Veterinary Students" that included tricks and tools to find an internship and book an informational interview; how to leverage "soft skills" into career success; and tips on resume preparation/messaging and how to create a "professional brand."

More than 8,000 students attended the 12th Annual Pre-Medical and Pre-Health Professions Conference, "Empowering the Next Generation of Health Care Professionals," on October 11-12. The program featured some 350 workshops and panel discussions, of which 58 were focused on veterinary medicine. More than 800 students attended the veterinary sessions which included topics on: diverse veterinary careers, application and interview tips, financing, and DVM/PhD dual degree programs to name just a few. 

"At the programmatic level, this annual conference is an outstanding opportunity to engage and recruit talented students into the health sciences,” said Sean Owens, associate dean for Student Programs. “For the students, combining nationally recognized industry leaders with enthusiastic and engaged students is a recipe for transformative change in the health care field."  

Counselors and advisors from more than 500 U.S. medical, dental, pharmacy, nursing, veterinary and public health schools participated in the event that is fully planned, organized, funded, and sponsored by pre-medical and pre-health students from the Davis and Sacramento area.  Undergraduate students from more than 100 California colleges, as well as colleges from throughout the state and nation attended. While the conference welcomes all students, it has a special focus on encouraging those from underrepresented populations seek careers in health care. 

The event featured addresses by 45 of the nation's leading health-care voices, including Richard Carmona, the 17th United States surgeon general; Alfredo Quinones-Hinojosa, a native of the Central Valley, former migrant farm worker and now associate professor of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University; and Barbara Numann, the first woman president of the American College of Surgeons.  Also featured: Janet Napolitano, President-University of California, Andrew Maccabe, executive director of the AAVMC; Theodore  Cohn, president elect of the AVMA ; and a number of faculty, staff and students  from the school.