Vet Up! Program Partners Visit Purdue to Discuss Collaborations

Friday, December 1, 2023

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Marsha Baker and Dean Reed join representatives from Vet Up! partner universities for a group photo by the Continuum sculpture in front of Lynn Hall.
Pictured left-right: Marsha Baker with Vet Up! partner representatives: Drs. Ayodeji Aderibigbe, Florida A&M University; Kimberly Braxton; University of Maryland Eastern Shore; Radiah Minor, North Carolina A&T State University; Tamra Tolen, Prairie View A&M University; Chukwuemeka Okere, Tuskegee University; and Emmanuel Asiamah, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff; joined by Dean Willie Reed.

Purdue Veterinary Medicine’s partnerships with several Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are pivotal to the success of the Vet Up! National HCOP Academy for Veterinary Medicine program. As part of the recently renewed five-year, $3.2 million HRSA program grant, PVM invited the founding partner schools to campus so they could learn more about the College of Veterinary Medicine and discuss with faculty and staff how to strategically strengthen and expand the partnership.

The Vet Up! Partners Meeting was held October 23-24 at the new David and Bonnie Brunner Purdue Veterinary Medical Hospital Complex. Attendees included department chairs and faculty from animal science, immunology, agricultural, and environmental science, representing Tuskegee University, the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore, North Carolina A&T, Prairie View A&M, Florida A&M, and the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

The founding partner schools have been working with PVM since the first Vet Up! grant in 2019 by providing letters of support and helping to identify students to participate in the Vet Up! programs. The meeting helped PVM learn more about the HBCU partners’ requirements, expectations, and potential alignment with PVM. “The partnerships with the HBCUs are crucial in raising awareness of our school and programs through virtual and on-campus visits, as well as in marketing PVM to their students,” said Marsha Baker, PVM assistant dean for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

During the meeting, Dr. Sandy San Miguel, associate dean for engagement, shared how the VetaHumanz program could be a possible means for collaborating in setting-up host sites to assist in introducing veterinary medicine and science to children in grades K–4. The attendees also heard from Dr. Chad Brown, director of Purdue Veterinary Nursing Programs, about the on-campus and online Veterinary Nursing degree programs, as well as PVM’s academic and psychological support systems for the college’s students.

“The meeting helped equip our partners to be able to talk about our programs, the faculty, staff, students, and the community to their students when they inquire about the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine,” said Ms. Baker. She added that she wants to increase the number of underrepresented students (URM) who visit the Purdue campus to learn more about graduate research opportunities and the DVM and Veterinary Nursing programs. “Many students who apply to the Vet Up! programs can take advantage of our four-week summer in-residence program or our 12-month hybrid program, both of which provide opportunities to learn about veterinary medicine.”

To learn more about the partnership or the Vet Up! program, please email

Writer(s): Kevin Doerr |

Category: Diversity, Our Impact

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