LSU School of Veterinary Medicine Confers 88 Degrees

For Immediate Release: May 11, 2020

BATON ROUGE―The Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine conferred 88 Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degrees in an online ceremony at its 44th annual Veterinary Medicine Commencement on Monday, May 11.

View the ceremony online

Mark Mitchell, DVM, PhD (LSU SVM 2001), DECZM, professor and director of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital at the LSU SVM, gave the commencement address. Joel Baines, VMD, PhD, LSU School of Veterinary Medicine Dean, presided over the ceremony. Mary Leach Werner, representing the LSU Board of Supervisors, conferred the degrees. Rachel Pool (Class of 2020) opened the ceremony with the invocation. Program speakers also included Thomas C. Galligan, Jr., JD, LLM, interim president of the LSU System; and Amanda Perkins, DVM, president of the Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association. Jordan Peters, DVM (LSU SVM 2020) gave the benediction.

Students who received Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degrees, senior awards, and internships and residencies are listed below alphabetically by state/country, hometown, and then last name:

Arkansas

Kristen Michelle Whitson, of Benton, Ark., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Benton, Ark.;

Holly Robyn Myshelle Dodson, of Fort Smith, Ark., received the American Association of Feline Practitioners Proficiency Award and the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and she has accepted a position with a feline practice in New Orleans, La.;

Sarah Lynn Cooper, of Imboden, Ark., received the Robert B. Lank, DVM, Memorial Scholarship and is interested in food animal medicine;

Taylor Christine Howell, of Little Rock, Ark., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award and will begin a rotating internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Coral Springs Animal Hospital (Florida);

Zachary Allen Reyna, of Little Rock, Ark., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Companion Animal Medicine, the Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and the Arkansas Veterinary Medical Foundation Jack R. Redman and Elizabeth G. Redman Outstanding Student Award, and he will begin a small animal rotating internship at MedVet New Orleans;

Mikayla Dawn Shedd, of Manila, Ark., has accepted a position with a mixed animal practice in Gosnell, Ark.;

Whitney Paige McGregor, of Monticello, Ark., has accepted a position with a mixed animal practice in Poplar, Mo.; and

Sara Rebeca Guillen, of Siloam Springs, Ark., and is interested in small animal medicine.

Florida

Rachel Elizabeth Pool, of Orlando, Fla., received the Nutramax Companion Animal Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Las Vegas, N.V.

Illinois

Alyssa Rose Hannon, of Palatine, Ill., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in St. Louis, Mo.; and

Kendell Teal Cowell, of Waterloo, Ill., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Belton, Mo.

Louisiana

Madilyn Nicole Garcia, of Abita Springs, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Certificate of Clinical Excellence (Small Animal), and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Lake City, Utah;

Elizabeth Dawn Burton, of Albany, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Las Vegas, N.V.;

Chloe Elizabeth Accardo, of Baton Rouge, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Erwinville, La.;

Elise Danielle Barras, of Baton Rouge, La., will begin a laboratory animal residency at the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine;

Sydney Elise Copeland, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Oncology Certificate of Merit and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Monroe, La.;

Robert "Tré" Vincent Gildersleeve, III, of Baton Rouge, La., received a plaque honoring his service as one of two veterinary student caretakers for Mike VII, LSU’s live tiger mascot, the Planche Mike the Tiger Caregiver Scholarship, and the Jill and Roger Jenkins Scholarships for Mike the Tiger’s Caregivers, and he has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Veneta, Ore.;

Mackenzie Allain Gremillion, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Baton Rouge, La.;

Lauren Elizabeth Hubicz, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Boehringer-Ingelheim Community Practice Award,  Merck Veterinary Manual Award, and the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Nashville, Tenn.;

Julia Winters McDuffie, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the American Academy of Veterinary Dermatology Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Austin, Texas;

Allison Claire Poche, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in LaPlace, La.;

Nadia Lorraine Richmond, of Baton Rouge, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, the American College of Veterinary Pathology Awards of Excellence (one for diagnostic pathology and another for clinical pathology), the Clinical Pathology Award of Excellence, the Dechra Award for Excellence in Dermatology, the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and the Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association Outstanding Student Award, and she will begin a small animal rotating internship at MedVet New Orleans;

Jaclyn Jennifer St. Croix, of Baton Rouge, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Valley Stream, N.Y.;

Kristen Reneé Wade, of Blanchard, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Shreveport, La.;

Olivia Rachel Lex, of Bossier City, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Sandy Springs, Ga.;

Mallory Alicia Garcia, of Burnside, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Texas City, Texas;

Aubrey Anne Traina, of Chalmette, La., has accepted a position with an exotic/avian practice in Satellite Beach, Fla.;

Elizabeth Lynne Dwyer, of Covington, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award the IDEXX Proficiency in Companion Animal Medicine Award, and she will begin a rotating internship at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine;

Morgan Ashley Byrd Richard, of Elton, La., is interested in food animal medicine;

Ellen Ruth Leichty, of Ethel, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Gap, Pa.;

Tanner Dwayne Hernandez, of Flora, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and he will begin a shelter medicine internship at the LSU SVM;

Bianca Thao Le, of Gretna, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Pearland, Texas;

Alicia Nicole Bailey, of Haughton, La., will begin an internship in Fort Belvoir, Va.;

Lauren Alyce Feliciano, of Haughton, La., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she is interested in small animal medicine;

Cheyene Elyse Blanchard, of Houma, La., received the Edward Lloyd Mitchell Memorial Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Poulsbo, Wash.;

Macy Jean Tullos, of Jena, La., has accepted a position with a mixed animal practice in Trout, La.;

Megan Elise Wilson, of Kenner, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and has accepted a position with the USDA in Bay Springs, Miss.;

Caroline Elizabeth Martin, of Lake Charles, La., is interested in small animal medicine;

Katelyn Boudreaux Frischhertz, Lawtell, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Baton Rouge, La.;

Rebekah Leigh Joyner, of Mandeville, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and she will begin a rotating internship in small animal medicine at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University;

Katherine Anne Lamont, of Mandeville, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and will begin a residency in laboratory animal medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill;

Laurel Ann Upton, of Mandeville, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Robert Rosenthall Senior Student Award for Proficiency in Clinical Oncology, and she will begin a small animal rotating internship at MedVet New Orleans;

Laura Claiborne Germany, of Marrero, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in St. Louis, Mo.;

Jeanne Michel Beck, of Metairie, La., received the Audrey Engelhart Scholarship in Shelter Medicine and the American College of Veterinary Surgeons Proficiency Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Mandeville, La.;

Kaitlin May Chauvin, of Metairie, La., has accepted a position with a mixed animal practice in Rayne, La.;

Tristan Michele Doyle, of Metairie, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Groves, Texas;

Jack Michael Ferro, of Metairie, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Metairie, La.;

Maegan Elizabeth Pela, of Metairie, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in New Orleans, La.;

Claire Elizabeth Zotkiewicz, of Metairie, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and is interested in small animal medicine in New Orleans, La.;

Josephine Lynn Cormier, of Monroe, La., is interested in equine medicine;

Sarah Ainsworth Hendry, of Napoleonville, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Louisiana Cattlemen’s Association Clinical Proficiency Award, and the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Certificate of Clinical Excellence (Large Animal), and she is interested in mixed animal medicine;

Sarah Genest Bonin, of New Iberia, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Hammond, La.;

Abigail Elizabeth DeRouen, of New Iberia, La., will begin a small animal rotating medicine and surgery internship at BluePearl Veterinary Partners San Antonio; 

Elizabeth Aimeè Gravette, of New Orleans, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award and is interested in small animal medicine in Dallas, Texas;

Tiffany Marie Mavromatis, of New Orleans, La., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, the Arizona Equine Medical & Surgical Centre Award, and the Theriogenology Clinical Proficiency Award, and she is interested in equine medicine;

Alison Marie Mikes, of New Orleans, La., will begin an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Animal Medical Hospital;

Christian Joseph Pellegrin, of New Orleans, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in New Orleans, La.;

Blakeley Michele Ramirez, of New Orleans, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Gretna, La.;

Kayla Michelle South, of Patterson, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in St. Louis, Mo.;

Sidney Guillory Batson, of Rosedale, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Morgan City, La.;

Mary Morgan Phillips, of Ruston, La., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Little Rock, Ark.;

Christopher Louis Barlow, of Shreveport, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Shreveport, La.;

Erin Renee Smith, of Shreveport, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Texas Equine Veterinary Medical Association Scholarship, the Heartland Veterinary Partners Business Award, the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Certificate of Clinical Excellence (Small Animal), and the Bayer Excellence in Communication Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Shreveport, La.;

Alexandra Brehon Williams, of Shreveport, La., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Harvey, La.;

Alexis Lane Caillouet, of Slidell, La., received the LSU Animal Sterilization Assistance and Cat Haven Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Ponchatoula, La.;

Paige Elaine Hymel, of Slidell, La., received the Hershey Comeaux Memorial Award of Excellence and the Dr. Rickey Broussard Award for Excellence in Clinical Practice, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Mandeville, La.;

Dallas Melena Wynn Rice, of Slidell, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Slidell, La.;

Brittany Burnham McClendon, of St. Francisville, La., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Denham Springs, La.; and

Rayna L. Campos, of Terrytown, La., is interested in equine medicine.

Michigan

Nicholas Lawrence Fleissner, of Dearborn, Mich., received a plaque honoring his service as one of two veterinary student caretakers for Mike VII, LSU’s live tiger mascot, the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, the Planche Mike the Tiger Caregiver Scholarship, the Jill and Roger Jenkins Scholarships for Mike the Tiger’s Caregivers, and the Gordon Pirie Zoological Medicine Award, and he will begin a rotating internship program in small animal specialty and emergency at BluePearl Veterinary Partners Michigan; and

Vanessa Nicole Wolf, of Troy, Mich., has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Las Vegas, N.V.

Nevada

Mara Emilie Wanderer, of Las Vegas, N.V., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and the American College of Veterinary Radiology Award, and she will begin an internship in small animal clinical sciences at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine.

New York

Michael Hitt, of Altamont, N.Y., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the American College of Veterinary Surgeons Proficiency Award, and he will begin a small animal internship at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine;

Tess Marie Alecksynas, of Argyle, N.Y., received the Boehringer Ingelheim Outstanding Food Animal Student Award and the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Gansevoort, N.Y.;

Jessica L. Seifert, of Freeport, N.Y., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award, the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, the Oncology Certificate of Merit, and the LSU Animal Sterilization Assistance and Cat Haven Award, and she will begin a small animal medicine and surgery internship at the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine.

North Carolina

Darla Jo Ingerson, of South Mills, N.C., received the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award and has accepted a position with a small animal position in Chesapeake, Va.

Pennsylvania

Lyndsy Helen Gazda, of Freedom, Penn., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she will begin a small animal medicine and surgery internship at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine; and

Jordan W. Peters, of Pittsburgh, Penn., received the Kaytee Outstanding Senior Award in Avian and Exotic Animal Medicine and will begin a special dentistry internship at Salem Valley Veterinary Clinic (Connecticut).

Puerto Rico

Karina Michelle Butler-Pérez, of Ponce, Puerto Rico, will begin an internship in Tampa, Fla.; and

Nicolás Agustin García-Abarca, of San Juan, Puerto Rico, received the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists Award and will begin a rotating internship in small animal medicine, surgery, and emergency at VCA Veterinary Care Animal Hospital and Referral Center.

South Carolina

Sarah Elizabeth Mercer, of Mt. Pleasant, S.C., received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and the Companion Animal Medicine and Surgery Certificate of Merit Award, and she has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Eugene, Ore.

Tennessee

Kathryn Paige Spivey, of Murfreesboro, Tenn., received the LSU Animal Sterilization Assistance and Cat Haven Award and will begin a small animal medicine and surgery rotating internship at BluePearl Franklin (Tennessee).

Texas

Kortney Alexa Kuhl, of Argyle, Texas, received the Merck Veterinary Manual Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Arlington, Texas;

Colleen Nicole Phelan, of Flower Mound, Texas, received the LSU Animal Sterilization Assistance and Cat Haven Award and has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Flower Mound, Texas;

Mark Feuquay Turbeville, of Fort Worth, Texas, has accepted a position with a zoological medicine/wildlife practice in Mason, Texas;

Lacy Anderson Ballis, of Houston, Texas, has accepted a position with a small animal practice in Austin, Texas;

Yi Gu, of Plano, Texas, has accepted a position with a small animal practice in New Castle, Del.; and

Crystal Lynn Kroes, of Wichita Falls, Texas, is interested in small animal medicine.

The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine is one of only 30 veterinary schools in the U.S. and the only one in Louisiana. The LSU SVM is dedicated to improving the lives of people and animals through education, research, and service. We teach. We heal. We discover. We protect.

 

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LSU School of Veterinary Medicine

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ginger@lsu.edu