STAR Conferences and Events

2017 PacVet Attendees
Students with Dean Lairmore at the 2017 Pac Vet Conference

2017 Pac Vet Conference


The 2017 PacVet conference was held in Long Beach, CA from June 29 - July 2, 2017.  In 2018, the conference will be held in San Francisco, CA.

Comments from students who attended this year:

"It was a great privilege to present my STAR project as a poster at PacVet 2017. I received valuable feedback and questions from the attending veterinarians and technicians that I had not considered and will be taking into account during follow-up studies. Presenting my poster was a true learning experience, as I had to learn to condense an entire summer’s project into a poster and engage listeners with the most relevant and poignant points.

Furthermore, PacVet provided the opportunity to learn about the work being done by my fellow Davis and Western colleagues, the latter of which there are few occasions to interact with. It was great to be able to network with the Western students and faculty and hear about the differences in their curriculum and ours.

I would highly recommend that any veterinary student attend PacVet."

"I am so glad that I attended 2017 PacVet conference at Long Beach. I was fortunate to have an opportunity to present my poster from 2016 STAR program. I truly enjoyed talking about my study, and having discussions with veterinarians who stopped by my poster. Getting feedback from them really helped me think differently, and makes research more fun. Dean Lairmore stopped by everyone's poster, and I felt incredibly honored to be able to present my study to Dean. Just giving poster presentation was worth coming to this conference, but it was not everything that PacVet had to offer us.

It was also an incredible opportunity to meet local veterinarians and get to know some of them. All the vets that have shared their life stories have inspired me so much that I am more excited about how my life is going to be like as a vet later in life. All of them had different unique veterinary backgrounds and interest, but they all emphasized the same point; they are very grateful for and happy about being a veterinarian. This conference has reminded me how great profession veterinarian is. I would love to attend the conference again!"

"Let me begin by thanking everyone involved in making this opportunity possible. When I started my STAR project, I never thought I would have this level of support from the faculty and staff. I am immensely grateful for this opportunity and will always cherish the journey.

I had a pleasant time presenting my poster at the conference. Even though my research topic was primarily academic, with some adaptation I was able to tailor the presentation to the everyday practitioner. The response was overwhelmingly positive, from both practitioners, professors, and students. None of this would be possible without the support of STAR, and various faculty in the Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology Department.

Beyond the poster sessions itself, I also had a great time at the Alumni Reception. I appreciated the opportunity to speak to alumni of the school, and share my experiences as a student. It was a great venue and occasion to network, and exchange ideas and wisdom.

Despite the busy poster sessions schedule, many of us were able to attend talks. As I move into the clinics, I am sure some of what I learned will translate into real-world applications.

Thanks again to everyone that worked so hard to make this trip possible. I enjoyed my time at PacVet 2017 immensely."

-Link to Pac Vet 2017 webpage-

2016 STAR Student Group Photo
2016 STAR Students at the NVSS

2016 Merial - NIH National Veterinary Scholars Symposium


The 2016 Merial - NIH National Veterinary Scholars Symposium was held at The Ohio State University, from July 28-31, 2016.

Sixteen STAR students from UC Davis attended the Symposium this year.

Student attendee comments:

"The Merial-NIH Veterinary Scholars Symposium was the first scientific conference I have attended. I was very excited to present on my topic. I had investigated if fluoroscopy could be used to measure the change in lung area and potentially serve as a noninvasive diagnostic for interstitial lung disease.

At the poster session, the sheer breadth of topics was astounding! Some projects were like mine and had a clinical focus. Others used in vitro models while others analyzed genetic sequences. The Symposium gave me the opportunity to learn about topics that I was unfamiliar with while simultaneously permitting me the chance to collaborate with those students whose projects were similar. In a few short hours I learned about lead levels in the dogs of Flint, Michigan, incidence of hyphema in cats post spay and neuter, novel vaccines for strays, and much, much more. I would highly recommend the experience to any veterinary student!"

Additional comments from student attendees will be uploaded shortly.

-Merial Veterinary Scholars Program-

2016 PacVet Group Photo
2016 PacVet attendees

2016 PacVet Conference


The 2016 PacVet conference was held in San Francisco, CA from June 23-26, 2016.  In 2017, the conference will be held in Long Beach, CA.

Comments from students who attended this year:

"Attending PacVet 2016 was a great way to network and interact with future colleagues while representing the future of UC Davis. I really enjoyed attending lectures about clinically relevant topics. My favorite was probably about the management of feline pancreatitis, since I am interested in feline specific medicine. I am very excited to have access to the online materials since some of the flow charts presented for diagnosis and management of diseases will be very useful for clinics. I also enjoyed interacting with veterinarians at my poster. While not very many stopped long enough to engage in conversation, those that did were very friendly and seemed genuinely interested in my research, which I enjoyed presenting. Dean Lairmore even stopped by to hear about my project, which was very kind of him."

"PacVet was an incredible opportunity to learn the latest in veterinary medicine from experts around the world, network with local veterinarians who will be our future colleagues, and share the research we completed last Summer through STAR with our veterinary community. I attended talks from various tracks and learned about several important topics I am likely to encounter regularly in my future practice, including GDV, Canine Atopic Dermatitis, Advancements in Exotic Animal Pharmacology, Reptile Anesthesia, and many more. Additionally, it was great to speak with veterinarians in the local community about their practices and experiences. They were very excited to talk to Davis students as many of them also graduated from Davis. I also would like to thank our Dean for taking the time to visit each of our posters and personally invite us to the Alumni Reception. I really appreciate how much emphasis he puts into getting to know each of our interests to help us network and achieve our career goals! The conference was a great experience and I would highly recommend it to next year’s STAR students!"

"The PacVet conference is a worthwhile opportunity for any veterinary student. The majority of the talks I attended were in the Avian/Exotics stream. It reinforced the material that I learned during my first two years of vet school even though it was on different species. I was able to talk to veterinarians that I had met previously at other conferences and was introduced to a few new ones that are known throughout the world in their field.

The poster presentations opened my eyes to a new perspective on research. I had several veterinarians stop by my poster, one of which I hope to do a externship with one day.  Each one shared that it doesn’t matter what your research topic is on, conducting research trains your mind to approach problems differently. It is that training that helps you become a better doctor in the future. One of my favorite individuals that I talked to had a PhD in the field of research my poster was based in. I loved being able to talk in depth about ways to improve the project, where there are gaps now, and different approaches to take on the same problem.

I met several Davis alumni during the conference. It was interesting to hear their path from vet school to where they are now. For most of them, their career path completely changed and they never thought they would be where they are today.  Despite that change of heart, they were all extremely happy in their current position. It taught me to keep an open mind. If an opportunity presents itself, I should try it because otherwise I will never know how it will change my life. It was also really fun to hear stories about professors back when they were in vet school."

-Link to PacVet 2016 webpage-

2015 STAR Student Group Photo
2015 STAR Attendees

2015 Merial - NIH National Veterinary Scholars Symposium


The 2015 Merial - NIH National Veterinary Scholars Symposium was held here at UC Davis from July 30 - August 2, 2015.

There were over 450 students from around the world in attendance at the 2015 Symposium. Poster sessions and talks were held in the Mondavi Center, while students and faculty attendees enjoyed dinner al fresco in the campus arboretum.



2015 PacVet Student Group Photo
2015 PacVet Attendees

2015 PacVet Conference


The 2015 PacVet conference was held in Long Beach, CA from June 17-21, 2015. 

Comments from students who attended this year:

"I attended the 2015 Pacific Veterinary Conference in Long Beach this past week and presented a poster on biomechanical testing of 1.5 mm condylar locking compression plate fixation in toy breed dogs. I really enjoyed my experience as a poster presenter. Not only did I have the opportunity to discuss my research with an orthopedic surgeon – who offered some excellent pointers on how to improve on my research protocol – but I also got to know a few of the Western University veterinary students. We discussed our research as well as the differences in our curricula. It was interesting to compare our perceived pros and cons regarding the variations in didactic approaches of both UC Davis and Western U. Our posters were set up in the large Expo area of the conference so we also had the opportunity to explore the plethora of booths set up around us. The booths ranged in products from practice construction to new drugs, lots of surgical tool innovations, as well as a booth on a stem cell product that I found particularly interesting. I had the opportunity to discuss the stem cell research with the CEO and marketing director of the company; interestingly, the company began its research in the human field and is now interested in partnering with veterinary departments at universities to perform their clinical trials. I find the work that UC Davis’ stem cell lab does on regenerative medicine extremely interesting so I thoroughly enjoyed that discussion."

"Although I did not present at this conference, I thoroughly enjoyed talking to all of the UC Davis and Western students about their research and future career goals. Meeting with old friends and new, attending the conference with fellow vet students was a great way to network with peers and future colleagues. I was surprised at the number of UC Davis SVM alumni present at the conference, which reinforced school pride, comradery among colleagues, and value of veterinary medicine within the UC Davis community. I would definitely recommend and look forward to attending the conference in the future."

"I was able to attend a number of the small animal medicine talks, which were extremely engaging and informative.  Having been in the "research world" for a while, it was especially exciting for me to be listening to discussions on case studies and re-immerse myself in veterinary medicine.  I also really enjoyed giving my poster presentation to the conference attendants.  I had a number of people stop by my poster during the sessions on Friday and Saturday, including small animal practitioners, a LA county public health vet, and a governor of the CVMA.  All had incredibly positive things to say about our research, as well as the quality of UCD SVM graduates.  I also enjoyed my time getting to know the other student presenters from Western.  I always love hearing what awesome things other veterinary students are doing with respect to research."

"PacVet was a great experience. I really enjoyed sitting in on the different talks offered throughout the day in the conference. I learned about liver disease in dogs, toxicology, and leptospirosis (among many other topics). The poster presentations were successful, I was able to talk to many different veterinarians and technical staff regarding my research with Dr. Verstraete. I was able to make a new poster that included radiographs and finalized data/statistics. It was really nice to be able to present my FINALIZED research, and to be able to answer with more definitive answers! It was a great networking experience for me, not only at the conference, but at the hotel as well. I was able to meet two older out of state DVMs and talk to them about their experiences in practice ownership and specialization. It was an eye opening experience to hear about the two owner's different paths to successful lives. Thank you again for the experience. I feel like I am really owning my research and gaining confidence in presenting my research to professionals in the field!"