Attendees Flock to Annual Purdue Veterinary Nursing Symposium

Friday, March 31, 2023

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Heidi present to a full classroom during the Veterinary Nursing Symposium
Heidi Lescun, BS, RVT, director of technical services for Vetamac, gives a presentation on anesthesia monitoring at the Veterinary Nursing Symposium in Lynn 1136.

Veterinary nurses turned out in force to take advantage of continuing education focused on their needs during the annual Veterinary Nursing Symposium held Sunday, March 26, at Lynn Hall. A total of 165 attendees, including veterinary assistants, veterinary nursing students, and veterinary nurses (technicians and technologists) learned practical information to use in clinical practice with a variety of lecture topics centered on both small and large animals. They also were able to visit booths set-up by five exhibitors.

Brittany Laflen gestures with her hands as she presents to the attendees.
Brittany Laflen, RVT, VTS (Neurology), speaks about seizure management at the Veterinary Nursing Symposium.

The day-long program began with opening remarks by Dr. Chad Brown, director of Purdue Veterinary Nursing Programs. Attendees then could choose between two tracks – one for small animal topics, moderated by Jennifer Ashley, RVT, veterinary skills and competencies manager, and one for large animal sessions moderated by Shelley Harmon, RVT, small and large animal versa technician. Speakers for the small animal track included Dr. Dennis DeNicola, Purdue veterinary alumnus and former Purdue professor of veterinary clinical pathology, who also worked for IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., and now is a partner in a private clinical pathology laboratory called Laboratory Retrievers. He spoke on the topic of “Do I Really Need to Understand the Graphics Provided By My In-clinic Hematology Analyzer?”

Other small animal track presentations included a talk on Pancreatis by Rebecca Roesler, RVT, VTS (ECC), emergency and critical care veterinary technologist; a presentation on Diabetes Mellitus by Katherine Beard, BS, RVT, small animal internal medicine veterinary technologist supervisor; and a talk entitled, “Anesthesia Monitoring and Your Anesthesia Machine,” by Heidi Lescun, BS, RVT, director of technical services for Vetamac.

The large animal track sessions began with a presentation on Urinary Track Disorders by Dr. Teresa Buchheit, Purdue Veterinary Medicine lecturer. Subsequent presentations included a talk entitled, “Myth or Medicine? Closer Inspection of Hot Trends in Equine Sports Medicine,” by Molly Cripe Birt, BS, RVT, VTS-EVN, senior veterinary technologist in large animal surgery; a session entitled, “A Vet Tech’s Perspective: Neonatal and Post-partum Care of Bovine and Equine Species,” by Hannah Byers-Englert, BS, RVT, who works at Stone Ridge Equine Care in Evansville, Indiana; and a talk on Equine Anesthetic Complications by veterinary technologist Jordan Wuthrich, BS, RVT, VTS (Anesthesia and Analgesia).

Symposium attendees visit with an exhibitor in the hallway
Veterinary Nursing Symposium attendees enjoyed visiting tables set-up by exhibitors, including this display for VetCheck Pet Urgent Care Center.

Following a break for lunch, the afternoon sessions all focused on small animal topics. Megan Oldfather, RVT, dentistry initiative training coordinator with Heartland Veterinary Partners, addressed the topic of “Do No Harm Dentistry”; Brittney Laflen, RVT, VTS (Neurology), veterinary technician for neurology and small animal surgery, gave a presentation entitled, “Seize Your Seizure Management”; and Kodie Balduff, RVT, CVT, a veterinary technician with the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, concluded the day with a talk entitled, “The Pretty Poisons.”

The symposium was sponsored by Hills Pet Nutrition, Vetamac, Noah’s Animal Hospitals, Emergency Veterinary Care Centers, NVA, and VetCheck Pet Urgent Care Center. The event also provided attendees with a popular opportunity to pick up some Purdue Veterinary Medicine apparel at the student-run Vet Shoppe, which was open during the symposium lunch break.

Writer(s): Kevin Doerr |

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