December 11, 2009

Notes from the Dean's Office

December 11, 2009

Dear Faculty and Staff:

Several of you have let me know that you appreciate receiving these bi-weekly memos. As I have mentioned in past notes, I am immersed in learning about the college and am happy to share my progress with you. I am continuing to get to know faculty and staff within the college as well as reaching out to potential partners who may help us further our work.

Let me first congratulate Dr. Michael Lairmore, chair and professor in the Department of Veterinary Biosciences who last week became president of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists.

Last week I had the opportunity to meet with the Ohio Department of Agriculture Director Robert Boggs along with State Veterinarian Tony Forshey. They are interested in additional areas for partnerships, particularly in food animal medicine. Dr. Forshey and other members of the ODA staff already participate in the monthly "Applied Field Epidemiology" meetings hosted in the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. I attended their meeting this week and was reminded of the importance of our College working with colleagues in regulatory medicine and with the State diagnostic lab.

I also had the chance to meet with Blake Thompson who was recently appointed to lead joint initiatives between the university and Battelle. We have a tremendous opportunity to work with Battelle, considered to be one of the world's leading research organizations working in areas of emerging science, including the health and life sciences. We will be exploring new opportunities to partner with this organization in several existing areas.

I enjoyed the opportunity to participate in the December meeting of the College of Veterinary Medicine Alumni Society Board. Their pride in their alma mater is evident in their support of our programs. I also met with Dr. Don Burton, an alumnus you may know. Dr. Burton specializes in the treatment of injured, ill, and orphaned wildlife through his non-profit "Ohio Wildlife Center." They treat nearly 5,000 wild animals a year, all with the goal of returning a healthy animal back to the wild. There are numerous issues on the horizon as human populations push against wildlife ecosystems. The need for veterinarians in this emerging field is especially critical.

The next few weeks will include progress in several initiatives: developing a new strategic communications plan with guidance from an outside agency (www.ologie.com), and working on an economic benefit study with faculty from the Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics. This will result in our ability to quantitatively demonstrate the economic value of veterinary medicine and the college to the State of Ohio.

In addition to that, our Student Affairs office has started interviews for our next class of veterinary students: The Class of 2014. Thanks in advance to them and all of our College volunteers for your hard work interviewing 350 students in about two weeks. Finally, I am discussing the concept of One Health with Dean Chip Souba (College of Medicine dean) and exploring options for further collaborations. Best wishes for a wonderful, albeit and cold, week-end!

Dean Lonnie King