Thursday, August 19, 2010
Dr. Booth, Dr. Champion and Dr, Mullikin

Dr. Booth, Dr. Champion and Dr, Mullikin

Veterinary Technology Named Advisory Committee of the Year


(By Lisa Garrett)

PENDLETON -- The contributions of Tri-County Technical College's Veterinary Technology Advisory Committee members -- as advocates for the program, the students and the animals they care for -- earned them the honor of advisory committee of the year.

This is the fifth time the committee has received the trophy. Veterinary Technology Department Head Dr. Peggy Champion and Advisory Committee Chair Dr. James Mullikin accepted the trophy and plaque on behalf of the committee.

The Veterinary Technology Advisory Board, consisting of veterinarians and technicians, meets regularly to evaluate and to develop the curriculum, to secure grants, to investigate scholarship opportunities, to promote the College, and to serve as consultants to the department head.

Two accomplishments that stand out this year are the committee's progress in establishing a 2 + 2 articulation agreement with Clemson University and increasing the number of continuing education events offered on campus for veterinary technicians.

Due to the leadership of Dr. Mullikin, the College now has an agreement with Clemson that allows the university to accept credits graduates receive for their Veterinary Technology degree towards a bachelor's degree.

This spring Dr. Keith Allen of Upstate Veterinary Specialists and the Pfizer Corporation sponsored a continuing education event for more than 100 veterinary technicians. Because Dr. Allen was able to secure Pfizer Corporation as a sponsor, the all-day event was free to those attending.

In addition, Dr. Allen and his partner, Dr. Dermot Jevens, along with Dr. Heather Gleaton of Roper Mountain Animal Hospital, generously provide scholarships, totaling $4,000 annually, for Veterinary Technology students. Dr. Steven Shrum, owner of Holly Tree Animal Hospital in Simpsonville, pays the SC Association for Veterinary Technician membership fees for the students. "Without these generous monetary contributions, some of these students would not be able to participate in either the program or the SCATV," said Dr. Champion.

Advisory Committee member Cheryl Bauknight of Easley demonstrates her love for animals in her contributions to the Pickens County community and the College. Bauknight serves as an active member of both the Veterinary Technology advisory committee and the IACUC committee, which oversees all animal care for the USDA. She has donated to the "PAWS for a Cause" campaign, which allows individuals to purchase a dog paw, a cat paw, or a horseshoe in memory or in honor of a beloved pet. Proceeds go to the Tri-County Technical College Foundation to support the Veterinary Technology program.

Throughout the year committee members volunteer as guest speakers in the classroom, along with contributing supplies and equipment to the department.

All members accept students to participate in externships at their facilities. "An externship is a requirement of the program, and without their willingness to take our students, and sometimes even pay them for their time, the externship would not be a positive learning experience for our students as well as the faculty," said Dr. Champion.

"Our advisory committee does a great deal more than just advise us on our program. They are individuals who care not only about animals, but about helping our students to be successful. Without their contributions, we couldn't do all that we do as a program," said Dr. Champion.

Tri-County's program is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association and is endorsed by the South Carolina Association of Veterinarians. It offers training in large and small animal clinical and surgical nursing, various laboratory skills, as well as courses in lab animal technology, office management and computer skills.

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