Student AVMA President Emi Eaton with
AVMA Vice President Gary Brown, official
liaison to SAVMA and the student chapters
Veterinary students remain a special priority for the AVMA, even at a time of fiscal restraint. In November the Executive Board funded several Student AVMA activities after deliberating their merits.
The board increased AVMA sponsorship of the SAVMA Educational Symposium to $25,000 per year, as recommended by the Membership and Field Services Division and the SAVMA Executive Committee. AVMA sponsorship had been $2,500 per year from 2000-2007, but for 2008 the board had increased support to $25,000.
AVMA Vice President Gary Brown told his board colleagues that despite the current monetary considerations, "The SAVMA symposium is the one thing they have each year that involves all of the students, and this is a wonderful way to show our organization's support."
The board referred to the Task Force on Future Roles and Expectations a recommendation to allocate up to $13,650 to fund the travel of any board member who wants to attend the SAVMA Symposium, rather than just a few AVMA representatives. Dr. Joe Kinnarney, District III board member and a former AVMA vice president, submitted the recommendation.
AVMA CEO W. Ron DeHaven and AVMA Governmental Relations Division Director Mark Lutschaunig submitted a recommendation the board approved to fund a SAVMA legislative visit to Washington, D.C.; the cost, $10,000. SAVMA leaders had contacted the GRD staff about such a visit. Next spring, 55 to 60 students—two from each U.S. veterinary school and the SAVMA officers—will attend the two-day event. The intent is for students to become advocacy champions for the AVMA and to influence their student colleagues to also engage in the public policy and legislative process.
The Executive Board recommended that the HOD approve Resolution 7, Funding for Continued Support of the AVMA Veterinary Leadership Experience. The Missouri, Rhode Island, and Florida VMAs submitted the resolution, asking the Association to support the VLE from 2010-2013, after AVMA support concludes with the 2009 VLE. The SAVMA supports the resolution.Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice, director of the Membership and Field Services Division, said, "This is the seed program, and it's being disseminated to other schools."
Student AVMA President Emi Eaton (IL '09) attended the board meeting as a guest. Later she said "We're thrilled over the increased funding for the SAVMA symposium and funding for the legislative visit. We're very thankful to AVMA because it continues to fund these amazing programs that allow us to learn about different facets of the profession."