The University of Alaska Fairbanks has formalized its partnership with Colorado State University to bring a professional veterinary medicine program to Alaska.
UAF Chancellor Brian Rogers and CSU President Tony Frank signed the agreement during a ceremony in Colorado. The signing was broadcast live Thursday, Dec. 19, in the Murie Building’s first-floor auditorium.
Currently, Alaska does not have a professional veterinary medicine program, despite Alaska students’ strong interest in pursuing careers in veterinary medicine. In order to meet that need, UAF is pooling resources with one of the top-ranked veterinary schools in the nation. The program will give preference to Alaska students and is scheduled to start classes in the fall of 2015.
The partnership makes the program viable, since developing a standalone program would be cost-prohibitive for UAF.
Students will eventually receive their Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degrees from CSU, but their starting point will be at UAF. They will take up to two years of graduate courses at UAF and then complete their veterinary studies in Colorado.
The program will admit 10 Alaska students per year. If too few Alaskans apply or meet the admission standards, then the two universities will consider students from outside the Alaska applicant pool.
Dr. Mark Stetter, a veterinarian and dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at CSU, said he and other college leaders are pleased to collaborate with UAF as a way to provide new opportunities for students and faculty based at CSU.
“We are excited that the CSU Professional Veterinary Medicine Program is partnering with UAF, and we expect our new partnership will open doors to learning and discovery that are important for students, faculty and many others in the Colorado State University family,” Stetter said.
He noted that Alaska is rich in natural resources, providing unique teaching and research potential on topics including wildlife disease and health, marine animal science, sled-dog medicine, and a variety of global public-health challenges that involve both human and veterinary medicine.
The veterinary program will be part of the UAF College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.
“The partnership between Colorado State University and UAF is paving the way for new educational opportunities that didn’t exist going in,” said CNSM Dean Paul Layer. “These students will be prepared for careers in veterinary medicine wherever their paths may take them.”
ADDITIONAL CONTACTS: Jennifer Dimas, Colorado State University Department of Public Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org or 970-491-1543.
WEBCAST ADDRESS: An archive of the signing webcast is available at this link: http://vcs-content.h323.alaska.edu/tcs/#page:recordingList&pageNumber:1&id:25F01BD8-2593-4991-A799-54DAF63BDD9E