Veterinary schools disproportionately admit white students

Analysis of the VMCAS applicant pool shows great strides are needed to diversify profession

When it comes to achieving goals of diversity and inclusion in the veterinary profession, a sustained effort is required.

This is according to an analysis of the demographics of the current Veterinary Medical College Application Service (VMCAS), conducted by the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC).

Lisa Greenhill, EdD, the group’s senior executive director for institutional research and diversity, recently examined the VMCAS applicant pool within the context of the broader population, hoping for insight into the pool’s future trends based on the number of children under the age of 18 and current college students in the U.S.

Her analysis shows a discrepancy between the diversity of populations in undergraduate schools as compared to that of the current applicant pool in academic veterinary medicine.

This, Dr. Greenhill says, suggests those in the field must work harder to attract a larger number of racially/ethnically diverse candidates.

“Although efforts to improve the diversity in the applicant pool have resulted in a pool that is just over 20 percent racially/ethnically diverse, we still see a trend in admitted students that disproportionately admits white students based on their relative representation in the pool,” she says.

“If veterinary medicine is going to have a sustained applicant pool feeding the profession, we must be committed to recruiting broadly and deeply in the demographic groups experiencing growth,” Greenhill adds. “We can’t afford not to consider diversity recruiting based on the long-term demographic projections.”

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4 thoughts on “Veterinary schools disproportionately admit white students

  1. A current law suit against Harvard is showing Asians are being denied acceptance to that university in the face of their markedly higher GPA’s vs. whites’ and blacks’ GPAs!
    Should professional schools go out and RECRUIT, campaign for minorities or any group for that matter just to achieve imaginary goals of “DIVERSITY” Let the grades, GPA’s, work requirements, etc speak for themselves. If an undergrad, has the academic qualifications and has met the requirements regardless of race, let those markers decide in a color blind manner, acceptance to veterinary school. There is nothing worse than “forcing” unqualified persons to be admitted to a very challenging veterinary curriculum only to see them fail. It is heart breaking, and I have witnessed it first hand in 1974-76 at Cornell.

  2. On a counter balance to the race issue, In the photo I note a high female population in the article photo versus men.. that could be of note that women are advancing in professional occupation. Kudos to that. As far as the rest of the race issue, earning the grades comes from self effort and opportunity. If the issue is to build diversity by race, then start in the public school system trying to build academia and knowledge of professional career paths. In time, through successful in quality teaching, students of many colors could qualify through earned grades and commitment to becoming a professional, (Teacher, Doctor, DVM, Accountant, etc) versus a Liberal Arts degree..

    1. It is not a GPA issue because I have had serveral students with high GPAs who have done their undergraduate education at another institutes which have a CVM, but didn’t get accepted there. I think this is crazy as they are terrific students and as minorities should have been accepted and given a scholarship for veterinary college. Well, I for one am glad they are here with me!

  3. So now institutions are responsible for the makeup of who APPLIES? Last I heard there was a huge shortage of openings available at veterinary schools, why in the world would anyone expect one to advertise at all? Now if your article had something to do with a vet school that accepted students based on race, sex, ect. then you’d actually have a story.

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