AVMA GRD selects 10 veterinary students for 2014 externship program

By: Stephanie Fisher, program manager and policy analyst, Governmental Relations Division

AVMA’s Governmental Relations Division (GRD) is pleased to announce the 2014 candidates selected to participate in its externship program. The program provides students with a four-week, hands-on introduction to public policy development and advocacy for the veterinary profession.

The externship program brings veterinary students to Washington, D.C., where they will work side-by-side with the AVMA GRD staff to educate congressional staffers on the organization’s legislative priorities; attend congressional hearings and briefings; and meet with a wide variety of veterinarians in all sectors of the federal government and nonprofit organizations.

The externship program is very competitive, and we had an excellent pool of nearly 30 candidates to choose from this year. Students will have the opportunity to learn how veterinarians can impact public policy on a national level, and the program will also expose them to alternative career paths in veterinary medicine. When they return to their veterinary studies, the externs are encouraged to remain involved in the political process and to educate their fellow students about the importance of advocacy on a state and national level.

The 2014 AVMA GRD externs are:

  • Catherine Brinkley, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2015
  • Tabitha Basine, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2015
  • Alex Bluntinger, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2015
  • Tayler Foshee, Oklahoma State University, Class of 2015
  • Kristen Hamsley, University of Georgia, Class of 2015
  • Samantha McDonnel,            University of California-Davis Class of 2015
  • Spencer Mills, Mississippi State University, Class of 2016
  • Kevin Przybylski, Ohio State University, Class of 2016
  • Emerson Tuttle, Tufts University, Class of 2015
  • Taylor Winkleman, University of Georgia, Class of 2016

AVMA’s governmental relations externship program has been in place for more than a decade, and more than 100 students have participated.

Interested in learning more about the externship program? Be sure to check out the Externs on the Hill blog to hear about previous externs’ experiences.

2 thoughts on “AVMA GRD selects 10 veterinary students for 2014 externship program

  1. Thank you for sharing your concerns, Dr. Nusbaum. With many students applying each year, it is always a challenge to pick the top ten, especially as the process has become increasingly competitive. Another consideration is scheduling. Some schools are more flexible in allowing time for non-clinical externships away from campus. We strive to rank each student on his or her individual merits and work within their schedule so the program can get the best and the brightest veterinary students interested in public policy.

  2. As an AVMA Congressional Science and Policy Fellow and a Professor Emeritus of Auburn, I am concerned that half the interns are from two schools. Part of the purpose of the experience is to share it with other students, and this could be more efficaciously accomplished by inviting 10 students from 10 schools.