The Daily Evergreen

Veterinary medicine dean: letter to graduates

Bryan Slinker | Evergreen contributor, Dean, College of Veterinary Medicine

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As Dean for WSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine, I congratulate the 122 wonderful individuals who will become the most recent addition to the ranks of veterinarians practicing around the country in a wide array of settings.

Your Coug DVM family is proud of what you’ve accomplished and who you have become over your past four years with us.

I also congratulate all the others graduating across campus, some of whom are preparing to enter veterinary college to follow in these footsteps. Why enter veterinary medicine?

First, there is the human-animal bond that we seek to promote and preserve among people and their companion animals. Second, both here and abroad, more than 60 percent of the infectious organisms that cause disease in humans are harbored in, and transmitted from, animal populations. And, nearly 100 percent of new emerging diseases, like the Zika virus, originate in animals.

Fundamentally, animal health and public health are intimately tied to one another in a concept known as One Health.

Look around the world. When a country’s people and animals are healthy, there is a greater potential for social and political stability, vigorous commerce and greater economic security. People who are well-fed, capable of earning a living, and free to pursue education and advancement are people who form stronger and more productive communities.

Our college, like all others at WSU, looks for the best of the best students to enter our programs. We often talk of being a family in our college and we take great pride in promoting this value to all of our students.

Like all families, there are struggles, opportunities and achievement potentials that come to us each day. Within our family, we support each of us as we determine what we focus on and how we can personally prosper and serve others with each decision made on the way to commencement.

Now that you have journeyed to this special day, for all those graduating, I wish you my personal best for a healthy and productive life ahead. Welcome to the Cougar Nation’s alumni.

Bryan Slinker

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Veterinary medicine dean: letter to graduates