Veterinary educators publish findings on impact of pandemic

candice in lab paired with headshots of casey and arianna

~March 2022~

The Cornell University Graduate School Future Faculty and Academic Careers office recently supported the publication of a qualitative study on veterinary students’ perspectives on how COVID-19 affected veterinary medicine. Candice Limper (graduate student in Microbiology and Immunology, and currently part of the NextGen Professors program), Ariana Hinckley-Boltax (Assistant Professor at Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, and formerly a Cornell postdoctoral scholar), and Casey Cazer (Assistant Professor, Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine) collaborated to analyze student discussion posts from a course on veterinary public health.

In March 2020, the course moved rapidly to an online format in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Cazer, a previous CIRTL Associate, encouraged the students to think critically about how the public health crisis would affect the veterinary profession. Candice applied thematic and content analysis to the students’ discussion posts and identified four areas that were opportunities or challenges for veterinarians: 1) the economic and social effects of the pandemic, 2) adapting to changing public health guidance, 3) collaborating with other public health practitioners to respond to the pandemic, and 4) diversifying the profession to tackle disparities. The authors recommend that veterinary faculty consider these areas as a starting point to align curricula and professional development activities to the “new normal” for the veterinary profession.

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