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First Class of DVM/PhD Fellows Graduates; New Class Begins

Four years ago, Morris Animal Foundation embarked on a new partnership with Zoetis, then known as Pfizer Animal Health. In an effort to address a critical shortage of veterinary researchers, the two organizations launched the Pfizer Animal Health–Morris Animal Foundation Fellowship for Advanced Veterinary Study.

This fall, the first six recipients “graduate” from the program, while two new researchers begin their four-year journeys.

The fellowships provide recipients with $60,000 per year for four years—which is provided equally by Morris Animal Foundation, Zoetis and the student’s academic institution—for living expenses and tuition while they pursue an advanced veterinary study.

“Many practicing veterinarians may wish to become veterinary scientists but can’t continue their educational journey due to financial constraints, like high debt,” says David Haworth, DVM, PhD, who in 2009 was director of global alliances for Pfizer Animal Health and is now president and CEO of Morris Animal Foundation. “The Zoetis–Morris Animal Foundation Fellowships help these professionals pursue a new career path and help fill a critical need for more veterinary scientists.”

Not only are these veterinarians making their own professional dreams come true, but they are advancing veterinary medicine along the way. The first fellowship recipients made discoveries in the areas of leishmaniasis, adrenocortical tumors and subvalvular aortic stenosis in dogs; insulin resistance in diabetic cats; and metabolic syndrome and laminitis susceptibility, Lawsonia intracellurlaris infections and equine recurrent airway obstruction in horses. Read more about these individuals and their work in upcoming blog posts.

Since the program launched in 2009, an additional 12 veterinarians have received fellowships, including two new recipients this year. Dr. Sarah Schneider’s new fellowship on canine cardiomyopathy complements a three-year residency program in veterinary anatomic pathology and the pursuit of a PhD in veterinary pathobiology at Texas A&M University. Dr. Sabrina D. Vobornik’s fellowship, also at Texas A&M University, will allow her to complete a PhD with an emphasis in chronic kidney disease and clinical pathology in dogs.

To learn more about this program, please visit Morris Animal Foundation.

Categories: Veterinary news, Veterinary research , Veterinary students
September 10, 2013