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Veterinary students host symposium

March 9, 2010

More than 1,500 students from across the United States will descend on Madison from March 11-13 as the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine becomes the latest university to host the SAVMA Symposium.

SAVMA, which stands for Student American Veterinary Medical Association, brings together veterinary medical students to learn about the most recent science and technology the profession has to offer.

The event, held at Monona Terrace, is organized and executed by a team of college students. It is funded by veterinarians and the veterinary industry.

“We are going after the Wisconsin Idea,” says student coordinator Ewan Wolff, referring to the well-known ideal that the boundaries of the state are the boundaries of the university, “That’s what is great about veterinary medicine in Wisconsin.”

This year’s SAVMA Symposium will offer many lectures and labs that include food animal science, an issue critical due to the current shortage of food animal practitioners.

“We trying to vastly expand the educational content,” says Wolff. “We want attendees to learn about topics they would not normally see in a traditional school curriculum.” At the same time, Wolff hopes to expose students to all Wisconsin has to offer a veterinarian.

One of the highlights includes keynote speaker, Christopher Olsen, associate dean for academic affairs and professor of public health at the university. His talk will discuss influenza pandemics, including the 2009-10 pandemic, as diseases at the interface of animal and human health. He will emphasize the critical importance of a One Health approach, integrating human and animal health, in pandemic preparedness and response.

Dean Daryl Buss adds: “We are delighted to host the 2010 SAVMA Symposium, especially at a time when awareness of the traditional roles of veterinary medicine in human health, as well as animal health, is resurging under the rubric of One Health. One Health has been a cornerstone of Wisconsin’s School of Veterinary Medicine since its founding, and our student organizers have been wonderfully successful in integrating One Health into the 2010 Symposium.”

For more information contact: Ewan Wolff at (608) 695-9943 or, or check out the SAVMA Web site: