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K-State News
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New programs help Native, Indigenous, tribal and rural Kansas students develop interest in becoming veterinarians

Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021


The College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University is launching two new opportunities for future veterinarians: SPARK, the Summer Program for Aspiring Rural Kansas veterinarians, and SPRINTS, the Specialized Programs for the Recruitment of Indigenous, Native and Tribal Students initiative.

SPARK seeks to create direct and purposeful connections between aspiring veterinarians and veterinary practices in rural communities throughout Kansas. As a daylong immersive experience, SPARK provides participants with the opportunity to shadow veterinarians in rural communities and gain exposure to the demands and rewards of rural veterinary practice. The goal of the program is to generate long-term interest in a career in rural veterinary medicine. Additionally, SPARK participants will engage in educational sessions to learn how to garner the necessary financial resources to attend a professional Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program, as well as how to create a competitive application for a selective Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program.

Ideal applicants for the SPARK program are those who intend to apply for admission to a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program during the 2021-2022 application cycle and are within five years of attaining a veterinary medicine degree. Applicants outside of that criteria are welcome to apply as well. To apply, go to kstate.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6L2r0qVJG39VJMV.

The SPRINTS initiative, funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, provides opportunities for high school and college students who identify as tribal, Native American or Indigenous to gain exposure to veterinary medicine as a potential career path. The initiative encompasses many programs, including sponsoring registration, travel and lodging costs for students to attend Vet Med ROCKS, an annual summer camp hosted by College of Veterinary Medicine students. SPRINTS participants will receive tailored consultations about the required prerequisite coursework and their current high school or transcripts, as well as the application process for acceptance into the College of Veterinary Medicine. They also will receive fee waivers for their supplemental application to the college.

Ideal applicants for the SPRINTS initiative are high school and undergraduate college students, at least 18 years of age, who identify as Indigenous, Native American or tribal, and with a desire to learn more about careers in veterinary medicine. To apply, go to kstate.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_ddolYXno3dPE9jD.

Questions about these programs can be directed to admit@vet.k-state.edu.

At a glance

Interested in a career as a veterinarian? Apply now for the College of Veterinary Medicine's SPARK program for students in rural Kansas or the SPRINTS initiative for Native American, Indigenous and tribal students.