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Building a pipeline for future veterinary medicine students

BE THE MODEL® STRATEGIC PLAN: Advancing Education and Student Success

To continue to recruit a student body that reflects the clients and owners they will serve, the College of Veterinary Medicine provides several social and educational opportunities for school-aged students aspiring to explore the world of veterinary medicine. These opportunities are advancing the college’s strategic goal of delivering extraordinary and value-driven education that prepares veterinary professionals to lead the field, advance science and achieve personal fulfillment by creating a pipeline for the next generation of veterinarians. Held both on the Ohio State campus and in the community, these opportunities offer students an inside look into veterinary school and enable them to explore veterinary medicine as a viable career option by working alongside role models and mentors.

Exploring the pathways of veterinary medicine

Established in 2006, Metro Early College High School was born out of the desire of The Ohio State University and Battelle to create a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) school designed to serve students who want a personalized learning experience that prepares them for a connected world where math, science and technology are vitally important. This program not only exposes students to the field of veterinary medicine and different pathways within it, but also provides some of the experience necessary to be competitive applicants through participation in wet labs, lectures, tours and one-on-one mentoring.

Raphael Malbrue, DVM, MS, assistant professor, Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, serves as a liaison between Metro School and the college and is passionate about empowering students. As an African-American male—one of the least represented groups in veterinary medicine, making up less than two percent of the profession—it is a passion of his to promote and educate the next generation of veterinary professionals, especially those from underrepresented minorities and groups.

“The Metro School has an extremely diverse population of students, many of whom have dreams of becoming veterinarians,” says Dr. Malbrue. “I have had several students approach me and say that seeing a person of color achieve the goal of becoming a veterinarian gives them the confidence they need to believe that they can achieve it. That shows me that we are making an impact with our partnership.”














Metro School is made possible through the facilitation and network of the Educational Council. It is the platform school for the Ohio STEM Learning Network and was the first higher education, business and K-12 partnership for STEM learning in Ohio.

 “The Metro School has an extremely diverse population of students, many of whom have dreams of becoming veterinarians.”
—Dr. Raphael Malbrue, assistant professor, Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine.

An immersive experience into the daily life of a DVM candidate

Buckeye Vet Prep Academy is a week-long summer residential camp for 45-50 high school students that takes place annually on the College of Veterinary Medicine campus. Attendees participate in a variety of labs and seminars, including performing a physical examination on a dog, reading x-rays, bandaging and suturing, and also taking a behind-the-scenes tour of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. Another highlight of the camp is the opportunity to spend a half day shadowing in the college’s Veterinary Medical Center. After choosing a veterinary specialty service to shadow, students spend the day learning from technicians and veterinary students and get to experience a day in the life of a veterinary student.

Raquel Ellis, a third-year student at the college, participated as a counselor in Buckeye Vet Prep Academy and found the experience energizing. “Being involved in the camp rejuvenated me. It reminded me what it was like to strive to be a veterinarian,” says Ellis. Her work with the students allowed her to re-discover her passion for the profession. “I was able to counsel them and encourage them to pursue their dreams, which sometimes as a veterinary student can be forgotten or questioned when things get tough and stress is at an all-time high. This camp is a great resource for high school students and a way for veterinary students to get back in touch with their love of veterinary medicine.”



The College of Veterinary Medicine's Be The Model® Strategic Plan outlines the college's ambition to Be the Model comprehensive college of veterinary medicine in the world. Our focusing on preparing students to be competitive applicants for veterinary colleges and other STEM professions is one example of how we are advancing education and student success. Learn more about the strategic plan and other advances at the college.

Last updated: 

Tuesday, January 31, 2023 - 12:40pm