UGA welcomes 102 incoming veterinary students in White Coat Ceremony

August 23, 2010

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Athens, Ga. - The University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine welcomed the class of 2014 during its annual White Coat Ceremony held Aug. 14. Sponsored by the Georgia Veterinary Medical Association, this event officially recognized 102 members of the incoming class by donning them in bright white lab coats to be worn during their veterinary education.

The hour-long ceremony was held in the Mahler Auditorium at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel. After the ceremony, Dr. Myron Downs, president of the GVMA and an Athens-area veterinary surgeon, led the two-block recessional of coated students to the College of Veterinary Medicine for a class photo and a reception with their families, and members of the college's faculty and staff.

The incoming class includes 76 women and 26 men, with an average undergraduate GPA of 3.57 and an average GRE score of 1157.This class also features a wide variety of interests, including:46 percent interested in mixed-animal medicine, 9 percent interested in zoo animal and wildlife medicine, 7 percent in food animal medicine, 2 percent in public health and 4 percent in research.

"The white coat is the symbol of medical professionalism. This ceremony, where our first-year students are coated and asked to recite the Veterinarian's Oath, reminds them that they are beginning their education in one of the most respected medical professions," said Dr. K. Paige Carmichael, the college's associate dean for academic affairs.

The UGA College of Veterinary Medicine, founded in 1946, is dedicated to training future veterinarians, to conducting research related to animal diseases, and to providing veterinary services for animals and their owners.Research efforts are aimed at enhancing the quality of life for animals and people, improving the productivity of poultry and livestock, and preserving a healthy interface between wildlife and people in the environment they share.The college enrolls 102 students each fall out of more than 550 who apply.For more information, see www.vet.uga.edu.

The current UGA College of Veterinary Medicine Teaching Hospital, built in 1979, serves more than 18,000 patients per year in one of the smallest teaching hospitals in the United States.The college is currently working to raise $15 million toward building a new Veterinary Medical Learning Center, which will include a new teaching hospital as well as classrooms and laboratories that will allow for the education of more veterinarians.The goal is to increase enrollment to 150 when the Veterinary Medical Learning Center is built. For more information, see http://www.vet.uga.edu/giving/campaign.php.

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