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September 1, 2009

Weeks before the UC Davis campus opens for fall quarter, veterinary students begin their classes for the year.

Tuesday morning, September 1, the School of Veterinary Medicine's Class of 2013 checked in, met one another, received welcomes from deans, and prepared for orientation--and four years of veterinary study.

Welcome

Dean Bennie Osburn greeted the 134 new students assembled in Gladys Valley Hall. "I welcome you, our 62nd class, on behalf of our faculty and staff. You'll make a real difference in the profession." Osburn explained that veterinary school forms the foundation of careers that could last for 40 years. He described some of the programs and resources of the school--the teaching hospital, Tulare facility and San Diego specialty clinic, for example--that give students so many opportunities to learn basic clinical skills and see the most complex cases in preparation for practice.

He noted that the size of the programs, the number and variety of specialties and the productivity of faculty researchers share one goal. "Our efforts are directed at making you the best veterinarian that you can be."

The school's White Coat Ceremony, signifying a student's official entry into the veterinary profession, is set for Friday, September 4, and classes begin Tuesday, September 8.

Class of 2013

Associate Dean Rance LeFebvre, referring to the class year when these students are due to graduate, told students that "13" was a lucky number. But it was not luck that brought these highly qualified students to UC Davis. 

Of 1135 applicants to the DVM program, 134 students have been accepted; 128 are California residents. The gender mix is typical for veterinary school, with 110 women and 23 men in the class. 

The average age is 24, but students range in age from 20 to 45 years old. Most of them went to college in California. Several students are entering veterinary school with master's degrees. Two students hold PhD degrees.

In addition to academic achievements, each student has already accumulated on average 3,100 hours of veterinary-related experience.

The Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree requires four years of academic study, laboratory practice and clinic training. Much of that training occurs in the William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, where faculty and highly trained staff treat more than 30,000 animals each year while teaching essential clinical skills that are expected of veterinary graduates. Students have two-week assignments in the different hospital services according to their areas of emphasis. The members of the Class of 2013 will also be eligible to take advantage of first-hand experience in scientific research, dairy medicine in the field, international student exchanges and more.

The majority of this year's students will work in private practice with small animals and horses or other large animals. This year, a significant number notes a professional interest in laboratory animal medicine or veterinary research careers and academic life. 

Osburn invited students to make the most of the many opportunities that UC Davis offers and pledged to keep them informed of issues relevant to the profession. He stated, "Step forward and embrace opportunities that will set you on the course of your career."

Even as members of the Class of 2013 settle in, the Office of Student Programs is gearing up for next year's applicants, who have until October 2 to submit their applications to veterinary school.

Link to Admissions