01 May Reflecting on My WVMA Executive Board Term
By Danielle Schuld, WVMA Student Representative
When I was first accepted into veterinary school one of my mentors told me “Vet school will be the fastest, slowest 4 years of your life.” I wasn’t sure what she meant at the time, but now that I am preparing to enter my fourth-year rotations, I can say she was absolutely right. Time seemed to crawl by as I studied countless hours with my classmates for the relentless number of exams we endured, but yet, somehow, three years have passed, our Blue Coat Ceremony has marked the transition to clinics, and my time as a WVMA Student Representative has come to an end.
Prior to veterinary school, I had never heard the term “organized veterinary medicine.” I quickly learned after joining the WVMA that this association wasn’t just another club to passively declare my membership – it was vital to our profession and was going to be an integral part of my veterinary education. My time serving on the WVMA Executive Board not only taught me what organized veterinary medicine was but gave me a sense of fulfillment and pride for my profession even before graduation and becoming a licensed veterinarian. My involvement with the WVMA will not be ending with the completion of my term as the student representative, as I will be focusing on organized veterinary medicine and leadership development in my fourth-year externships and rotations.
Serving on the WVMA Executive Board has given me the privilege to not only work with but become friends with several of the amazing veterinarians in Wisconsin. I am proud to be part of an organization that works tirelessly to advocate for its members and provide them with the most up-to-date information and education in the profession. Wisconsin veterinarians and veterinary students should have confidence that they are represented well by their district executive board members, at the Capitol and on a national level.
I hope many of you consider getting involved with your local VMA and you are inspired to pursue further leadership roles in the WVMA like serving as a district representative on the executive board. Wisconsin veterinarians have such rich knowledge and mentorship to offer to the next generation of professionals, and I hope to continue to share that tradition as I enter the workforce in the next couple of years. Thank you to all the members who have supported me and other students by welcoming us into your clinics, speaking in our Vets to Vet School program, and promoting weekend continuing education events. I am incredibly grateful that Dean Markel ensures all students at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine are members of this great organization and can benefit from the interaction with Wisconsin veterinarians across the profession.
Our mission at the WVMA is to advocate and promote veterinary medicine, while enriching animal and human health. I have seen this mission embodied in every person I have interacted with on the executive board, and I know so many of our members do so as well. The veterinary profession is an exciting frontier for new graduates, and as a fourth-year veterinary student, I can’t wait to continue to interact with so many of you in various externships! Thank you for your continued support to veterinary students, and On Wisconsin!