Class of 2017 Story: A Career With Clear Focus

Sara Reichelt
Hometown: Cary
Area of study: Poultry medicine
Post-graduation plans: Aviagen primary breeder veterinarian

I just always wanted to be a vet.

I wanted it for so long that I ended up on autodrive on that pathway even if I could not really tell you what was drawing me to the job. I recall getting into veterinary school and being ecstatic that I had achieved something so difficult, but hearing others speak about their passion I wondered  if maybe I did not want it as much as all the others.

Up until starting the first week of veterinary school, I had this underlying anxiety wondering if it was really what I had wanted or if I was there just because I didn’t let myself consider anything else.

Vet school changed my mindset immediately.

It draws you in and gives you so much that you cannot get anywhere else. Every day, I know I can give back to animals, their owners and the community. There are a million reasons to love veterinary medicine and I am so thankful that I was given the opportunity to learn that

It is hard to narrow down my most memorable experiences. There was the time I learned how to deal with a whale stranding itself on the beach as my classmate pretended to be the whale. There was the time Dr. Jody Gookin imitated the difference between vomiting and regurgitation. I remember giving shots to more than 20 koi fish with classmates. I watched professors sing and dance in our talent show and bonded with all of the patients throughout fourth year.

While at the CVM, I have learned that I can juggle life pretty well even when it gets hard. I would advise all students to remember that there is more to life than work. I adore veterinary medicine and I plan on putting many hours into taking care of animals, but I won’t forget to take care of myself.

That means that I will work but then I will go home and spend time with friends and family and sometimes try to forget about the hardships that our jobs present. I truly believe this will help my longevity in the industry.

I tried to stray away from saying “I can’t wait”. Too often people say this, looking for the present to be done. But I wanted to enjoy my time in veterinary school without wishing it away. It was the hardest four years of my life that brought me so much happiness and I could wait for it to be over.

Now I am excited for the next stage of my life that we worked so hard to get to. Enjoy every aspect veterinary school because it is fun, hard, busy and overwhelming — and an incredible experience.