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June 30, 2022

Comet at the vet: Sharing veterinary medicine with kids

You’re a middle-school student faced with an animal patient: Comet, a ten-year-old Bichon Frise whose leg appears injured after a jump from a bunk bed. What do you do?

Comet the stuffed animal dog

Fortunately, there’s no pressure. You’re only taking part in a simulation, Comet’s health is not really in your hands, and the dog you are about to bandage is made of stuffing and cloth — you’ve still got 15 years to go until vet school!

These hands-on learning opportunities are brought to life by students belonging to the BIPOC Club at the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine, with coordination and support from College outreach specialist Micaela Flores. They partnered with Michigan GEAR UP and the MSU Office of College Access Initiatives to educate children from diverse backgrounds about career paths in veterinary medicine.

The students from BIPOC Club (DVM students Kimberly Guzmán, Nicole Hamlin, Lindsay Jordan, Uzma Manzoor and Jade Ognibene) walked approximately 200 eighth-grade students at a local Lansing middle school through a fictional patient scenario: having them consider how to evaluate and treat Comet. As part of the virtual walkthrough, students practice bandaging a patient of their own — a stuffed dog, not a real one

“The students were provided a stuffed animal and bandaging equipment to follow along the case presentation of how to fix a broken bone,” said Guzmán, co-founder of BIPOC Club. “They seemed very engaged with placing bandages and learning how they too can become veterinary doctors."

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