SVM Faculty, Staff and Students Share Thoughts of Gratitude

Whether it’s teaching and mentoring tomorrow’s veterinarians and researchers, making a difference for the patients and clients of UW Veterinary Care (UWVC), advancing biomedical science, supporting classmates, or so much more, faculty, staff and students at the UW School of Veterinary Medicine (SVM) make a difference in the lives of people and animals every day.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we asked the SVM community to reflect on what they are thankful for at the school. Below is a sampling of their notes of gratitude.

I was part of the first wave of faculty to join the SVM in 1983. I am thankful for the unique opportunity to be part of an exciting new academic venture, and to share the past 36 years with an outstanding group of faculty, staff and students. –
Chuck Czuprynski, professor and chair, Department of Pathobiological Sciences

I am grateful that the clinicians come from all parts of the world and it feels like this whole world works well together.
Pat O’Brien, medical technologist senior, UW Veterinary Care

I am thankful that an institution that is so highly regarded for its research has given me an opportunity … and
 for the teaching and research mentoring committees that are in place to give me every advantage to ensure that I have a chance to be promoted. Thanks for welcoming me to Wisconsin and the USA! Graham Thatcher, clinical assistant professor, dentistry and oral surgery, Department of Surgical Sciences

I am new in phone reception/records and I am very grateful for having coworkers who are so professional. They are patient teachers and fantastic at their jobs. It has been a long time since I have been in a work environment that I feel so comfortable and supported in trying to better myself at my position. They are always sharing with each other, learning from each other, teaching each other and laughing with each other. I am very grateful that I was given an opportunity to be a part of this wonderful team at this university.
Kacey Briley, medical program assistant, UW Veterinary Care

I am grateful to be surrounded by students, faculty and staff that are always willing to offer help and are as passionate about veterinary medicine as I am!
Ellen Schneider DVM’21

I’m thankful to work with kind, dedicated and passionate veterinary medical students! It is an honor to watch them develop personally and professionally throughout their education, moving from pre-veterinary students or new first-year students at orientation to their final, clinical year and developing into new professionals. The commitment and tenacity that students bring to studying new subject areas, approaching difficult problems and exploring and learning about where they want to contribute to the profession of veterinary medicine is inspiring to me!
Lynn Maki, associate dean for student academic affairs

Alumni Give Thanks
We also asked UW School of Veterinary Medicine alumni to reflect on why they are thankful to be working in the field of veterinary medicine. Read their notes of gratitude.

I am thankful for Christina Frank with PAWWS [Personal and Wellness Support Services], Lynn Maki, and many professors at the SVM that truly care for each individual student here. I am also thankful for SAVMA, student clubs and wellness events (like massage and yoga!) to help us keep our sanity.
Jacey Spoehr DVM’21

I am thankful for being able to work in such a great place and having wonderful coworkers (teammates!), working with the students, having them share their knowledge as they learn, and their kindness every day. I wish everyone could experience this.
JoAnn Disch, program assistant, Office of Academic Affairs

I am thankful for open communication between Office of Academic Affairs staff and the students that leads to a positive educational environment; my dog, my classmates, former coworkers and current coworkers; and the opportunity to learn veterinary medicine!
Laura Martinelli DVMx’21

I am thankful for the opportunity to work with such brilliant colleagues and students who challenge me and teach me something every day
. –Jen Dreyfus, clinical instructor, anatomic pathology, Department of Pathobiological Sciences

I am thankful for the opportunity to work with an amazing group of technicians, veterinarians and researchers that strive to make a difference in both human and animal lives every day! I am also thankful that I still enjoy my job after being at the SVM for over 24 years!
Becky Johnson, clinical associate professor, anesthesia and pain management, Department of Surgical Sciences

I am thankful that my position at UW allows me to dabble in everything: I can make a direct impact on patients/clients in the clinic while also making a bigger impact on veterinary medicine through mentoring students/interns/residents and research. I get the opportunity to teach while continuing to learn myself. And I get to do this while still maintaining a good work-life balance, which is very important to me with a new baby at home!
MacKenzie Pellin DVM’11, assistant clinical professor, medical oncology, Department of Medical Sciences

I am grateful for the lovely clients, wonderful patients and brilliant co-workers I encounter here at UWVC and the SVM … and for being part of a research university and the science, knowledge and progress we promote here.
Karla Stoebig, small and large animal reception, UW Veterinary Care

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