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Navigating Diversity and Inclusion in Veterinary Medicine

Lisa M. Greenhill
Kauline Cipriani Davis
Patricia M. Lowrie
Sandra F. Amass
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  • Book Info
    Navigating Diversity and Inclusion in Veterinary Medicine
    Book Description:

    This book addresses the continued lack of the diversity in veterinary medicine, the least inclusive of all medical professions. Effective navigation of the complexity of diversity and inclusion in veterinary medicine requires clear enumeration, recognition, and understanding of key issues, challenges, and opportunities. In a nation with rapidly changing demographics, public needs and expectations of the veterinary profession will continue to evolve. A more diverse scientific workforce is required to feed the veterinary profession, not just for the purposed of equity, but as necessity for its sustainability and relevance.

    eISBN: 978-1-61249-259-9
    Subjects: Education, Health Sciences

Table of Contents

  1. Foreword What It Means to Be Inclusive and Why It Is Imperative for the Veterinary Profession
    (pp. viii-xi)
    Willie M. Reed

    In the year 2011, the veterinary profession launched a global celebration of the 250-year anniversary of veterinary medical education. Throughout the yearlong celebration many accounts of important contributions by the veterinary profession since the founding of the first veterinary school in Lyon, France, in 1761, were chronicled in international publications and at scientific conferences around the world. The celebration largely highlighted scientific contributions of Caucasian/White and predominantly male members of the profession, with little or no mention of the contributions of women or individuals of color. While it is undeniable that the veterinary profession has made many important contributions to...

  2. Chapter 1 The Base Map: What Is the Case for Inclusion?
    (pp. 1-10)
    Lorelle Espinosa and Lisa M. Greenhill

    Racial and ethnic diversity in the United States, while long present in our country, has perhaps never been such a prominent issue in public policy, public opinion, and within the pages of scholarly papers and books. America’s post-slavery era resulted in numerous civil rights movements including women’s suffrage, educational integration, housing and employment desegregation, and antidiscrimination activities around issues of disability and sexuality. Today, America remains focused on issues of gender and racial inequality in education and in the workforce—issues that are also taken up by veterinary and animal science educators and professionals. In fact, there has been great...

  3. Chapter 2 The Aerial Mosaic: A Historical Picture of Diversity in Veterinary Medicine
    (pp. 11-30)
    Billy E. Hooper

    Our changing views and actions with regard to diversity can hardly be understood except within the broad context of changes and actions within our society as a whole. We find the basic principle underlying the belief in diversity stated in the July 4, 1776 Declaration of Independence, which states that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal” (US Declaration of Independence, 1). Today, we would more likely say “that all persons are created equal,” with the basic premise being that all human beings have equal value and are deserving of equal respect and treatment....

  4. Chapter 3 Orientation: Looking at Strategies Utilized by Other Health Professions for Increasing Diversity
    (pp. 31-40)
    Kauline Cipriani Davis

    In chapters 1 and 2, we explored the lack of diversity in the STEM disciplines at the undergraduate level, and corresponding serious implications for the DVM applicant pool. Many other professions have a long history of utilizing various strategies in an attempt to increase diversity within their academic programs. This chapter presents an overview of a select group of these strategies; this list is by no means exhaustive. Academic veterinary medicine can certainly benefit from the body of knowledge that exists around what strategies have and have not worked, particularly with regard to other health professions, whose curricula and potential...

  5. Chapter 4 Origin of Coordinates: The Dilemma of Social Constructs
    (pp. 41-54)
    Patricia M. Lowrie, Lisa M. Greenhill, Mangala Subramaniam and Ken Gorczyca

    The influence of multiple personal and/or social identities on career awareness, exposure, decisions, and pathways is significant. While the diversity in representation discussion narratives are predominately about race, clearly no one characteristic or identity (e.g., gender, sexual orientation, class status, religious practice, ethnicity, etc.) as social constructs define the individual. In perspective, the multiple identities of individuals, coupled with the experiences, opportunities, encounters, understandings, and challenges, are shaped and interpreted by both the characteristic and their intersections within individuals. It is, therefore, interesting to note where and when critical career decision points fall concurrently with critical points in identity development...

  6. Chapter 5 Mapping Our Future: Developing the Pipeline for a Diverse Workforce
    (pp. 55-62)
    Sandra F. Amass, Omolola Adedokun, Kauline Cipriani Davis and Dorothy A. Reed

    A Science and Education Partnership Award from the National Institutes of Health supports a partnership among Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and public schools. Teachers develop curricula to interest students in health science careers and are provided the necessary resources to implement the curricula. In one classroom, an African American/Black, third grade student spent all of his classroom and free time reading every book in his classroom about veterinary medicine. At the end of the module, the student indicated that he did not want to be a veterinarian on his posttest. Surprised, the teacher asked the student the reason...

  7. Chapter 6 The Land-Line Adjustment: How Do We Measure Impact?
    (pp. 63-78)
    Kauline Cipriani Davis and Lisa M. Greenhill

    Questions about the impact of diversity in any profession have been raised for many years. Detractors often argue that the mere differences in personal identity offer little in the way of contribution to advancing business, learning, or social interactions. Further, efforts to emphasize and enhance diversity have frequently been met with criticisms that such efforts undermine true equity by deemphasizing merit and excellence. Such arguments neglect consideration that historically marginalized populations continue to be marginalized by insinuations that merit or excellence cannot be found among them. As we measure the efficacy of diversity programming—the acquisition of skills and resulting...

  8. Chapter 7 “Here Be Dragons”: Barriers to and Opportunities for Change
    (pp. 79-94)
    James W. Lloyd

    Inclusiveness in veterinary medicine will ultimately entail two distinct but closely related achievements: 1) a broad-based cultural competence across the profession, and 2) an incoming stream of new entrants to the profession whose demographics with regard to race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability, and religion approximate those of the general public. The journey toward inclusiveness is strewn with challenges along the way. However, these challenges are rightly framed as opportunities for improvement and progress. Clearly identifying such opportunities provides direction for the way forward.

    At the outset, it is critical to recognize the complexity of the journey toward...

  9. Chapter 8 The View at 40,000 Feet: Networking a Diverse Profession
    (pp. 95-130)
    W. Ron DeHaven, Bernadette M. Dunham, Clinton A. Lewis Jr., Ronnie G. Elmore, James R. Coffman, W. Ron DeHaven, Ralph C. Richardson and Cara E. Williams

    A diverse veterinary profession is a strong veterinary profession, strategically positioned to meet societal needs and well equipped to serve animal, human, and public health. If we are to provide the services required by the mosaic that is American society, excellence in the profession will require a workforce representative of our communities. That’s why the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is committed to helping build a more diverse veterinary workforce.

    A special 2010 report published in theJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Associationcaptures why a diverse veterinary workforce is critical if we are to meet our professional and...

  10. Chapter 9 Dead Reckoning: A Call to Action
    (pp. 131-136)
    Patricia M. Lowrie and Lisa M. Greenhill

    Deliberate diversity and inclusion initiatives have been a part of veterinary medical education for nearly forty years. These efforts can be characterized as having reasonably consistent championship, very limited national and local structural frameworks, and a lack of cohesive approaches to building a sustainably inclusive culture. Consequently, these initiatives have produced modest changes in representation over the years. Discussions in the preceding chapters identify numerous activities, initiatives, or programs that have minimal connections among institutions. A broad range of explanations are offered, providing rationales for either the specific effort or to justify the need based on a compelling understanding of...

  11. Appendix A Representative Summary of P-12 Programs at Schools and Colleges of Veterinary Medicine
    (pp. 137-142)
  12. Appendix B Representative Summary of Undergraduate Programs at Schools and Colleges of Veterinary Medicine
    (pp. 143-146)