A fifth-year Zoetis partnership with veterinarians, animal health suppliers and dealer-customers has raised more than $1.2 million to support FFA, the American Association of Bovine Practitioners Foundation and the American Association of Equine Practitioners Foundation.
Between Jan. 1 and March 31, 2013, a portion of funds from eligible purchases of Zoetis cattle and equine products was directed to local FFA chapters, and/or veterinary student scholarships through the AABP and AAEP foundations. Since its inception in 2008, the Industry Support Program has raised more than $5.9 million.
For former veterinary students Amanda Wagner from The Ohio State University and Amy Cook from Iowa State University, receiving Zoetis Veterinary Student Scholarships from the AABP and AAEP Foundations, respectively, helped support their futures.
"Zoetis and the AABP Foundation have had huge impacts on my career through networking opportunities, educational resources and financial assistance for both externships and veterinary school," said Dr. Wagner, now with Tri County Veterinary Service, Inc., in Anna, Ohio.
Dr. Cook, an intern at Kendall Road Equine Hospital in Elgin, Ill., said scholarships not only eased tuition burden but gave the opportunity to pursue the route of veterinary medicine she's passionate about.
"By helping to ease tuition debt, the AAEP Foundation and Zoetis allow students greater career flexibility, rather than having to specifically select a job that fits their repayment needs," Cook said.
In addition to the scholarships, more than 1,800 designated FFA chapters received more than $1.1 million this year to support their chapter activities. In Selah, Wash., Selah High School FFA students, along with their chapter advisor, Ray Harris, count on organizations and the community to strengthen their chapter.
"With help from donations such as these, we have the opportunity to purchase and restore tractors to display at the Central Washington Agricultural Museum, and give money for raising market animals for students who can't afford them," said Jacob Herriges, Selah High School FFA chapter parliamentarian.
Supporting agricultural leaders today helps ensure the future of the industry, added Rob Kelly, vice president, U.S. Cattle and Equine Operations, Zoetis.
"Many at Zoetis, along with our veterinarian and animal health supplier, dealer and distributor partners, were involved in these organizations, so we know firsthand the importance of support," Kelly said. "We recognize this is our opportunity to give back and directly impact these students now and in the future."