Pfizer and AVMF announce scholarship recipients

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Pfizer Animal Health and the American Veterinary Medical Foundation announced in March that they had awarded $827,500 in scholarships to 331 veterinary students.

The Pfizer-AVMF scholarship program, now in its third year, provides $2,500 scholarships to second- and third-year veterinary students. Pfizer funds the scholarships, and the AVMF administers the program.

For 2012, a total of 1,582 students applied for scholarships. Selection criteria for recipients include academic excellence, professional interests, financial need, diversity, leadership, and potential for contribution to the profession.

Of the scholarship recipients for 2012, nearly half plan to go into food animal or mixed animal practice, and almost a third belong to underrepresented racial or ethnic groups. A list of scholarship recipients is available at

"Students are the future of the veterinary profession, and Pfizer Animal Health is honored to support them on their path for professional success," said Vanessa Mariani, Pfizer Animal Health director of academic and professional affairs for the United States. "We understand the financial barriers that many students face today."

Pfizer Animal Health has increased funding for the scholarship program by 49 percent since the program started in 2010.

"With a core strategic objective of veterinary student enhancement, the AVMF is very pleased to partner with Pfizer Animal Health in supporting the education of future veterinarians," said Michael W. Cathey, AVMF executive director. "Working together, we believe we are making a significant impact on the medical care and well-being of the animals we ultimately serve."

Among the scholarship recipients is Curtis Plowgian, a third-year student at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.

"Every bit truly does help, and the generosity of donors such as Pfizer and AVMF helps get me closer to my goal of becoming a companion animal veterinarian without having to worry as much about the increasing cost of my education," Plowgian said. "This year, the scholarship helped me purchase textbooks and supplies for my clinical year in addition to reducing the amount of loans I needed."