Dr. Ryan GibsonLecturer (Neurology and Microanatomy) Board Certified Veterinary Neurologist, Auburn University | BS 2012, University of Findlay | DVM 2016, Mississippi State | Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine - Neurology
Veterinary medicine isn’t just a job or a career, it is an entire world of discovery. Veterinarians are often influential members of their community and the veterinarians in my community growing up were no exception. I was completely mesmerized by the procedures they did on animals but also blown away by the vast array of conversations they could be a part of including topics on animals, human health, and even on new medical research coming out! When I was young I looked at these veterinarians as people who could do anything and I wanted to be a part of that amazing group of people!
In high school my family struggled with housing and financial security and there were times I worried that I would just need to work after to help the family. I give so much credit to my parents for their hard work and sacrifices to working jobs they hated to ensure that I could go off to college and follow my dreams and I promised to never work in a job I hated. As I was in college and Vet School life continued to throw significant curveballs in the way of major life changes including significant health changes in family members that took focus away from school and studying and often made me question if I was doing the right thing or if I needed to come home and take care of family. It is only because of my brothers and other family members that I was able to get through college and vet school. Always ensure you have family and friends to support you – success is a team sport!
Dr. Scott Yancey in Marion, Ohio is the reason I am a veterinarian. He came to career day in his wife’s 4th grade class and brought all the amazing things he removed from the stomachs of animals and I was hooked! Dr. Yancey was a pillar of our community and someone I wanted to emulate not just in career but in the way he worked with people and involved himself in the community.
My Typical Day
I have aligned my career with my passion for teaching! For this reason most of my day is filled with formal lectures and educational experiences for my veterinary students. I absolutely love talking them them and fellow educators to ensure we are constantly evaluating what we are teaching them to ensure that we supporting them to become the best veterinarians possible! Throughout the day I will also get requests to help general practitioners with neurology cases that can’t afford or physically can’t get to referral centers. I love helping with seizure cases! I also work with so many amazing researchers in different areas helping to support their projects furthering both human and veterinary medicine as well as supporting community outreach!
The biggest stressor for me is saying no or feeling like I am failing someone or unable to help! This often leads me to saying yes and spreading myself too thin! I try to keep in mind that I need to take care of myself in order to help others! I ensure that I take time to enjoy my hobbies such as acting, attending theater performances, and competitive shooting events.
I love that we don’t just “work with animals”. This career is so much more than that! We get to make advances in all aspects of medicine and serve as resources for pet owners, researchers, and the general population! It is through this career that I get to educate and teach fulfilling my passions! There are so many ways to make a career in veterinary medicine what you want it to be – the possibilities are endless!