Addressing the nation’s critical shortage of animal health professionals and improving pets’ overall access to care is the driving force behind the Garden State’s first-ever veterinary college.
The Rowan University School of Veterinary Medicine is set to offer New Jersey’s first Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree, as well as additional degrees and training programs aimed at shaping the future of animal health care in the state.
The offerings hope to address America’s veterinary shortage, which the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) predicts will reach 15,000 by 2026, Rowan University reports.
The school will establish undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, and internship/residency programs. Additionally, veterinary technology degrees will be offered in collaboration with Rowan College of South Jersey-Gloucester.
“We are creating a destination of choice for students who share a passion for animal health and who want to pursue careers in veterinary-related studies at all higher education levels,” says university president, Ali A. Houshmand, MSc, MS, PhD. “Our curriculum will emphasize developing career-ready professionals to address shortages of animal health care providers in New Jersey and throughout the United States.”
In November, the state’s legislature approved $75 million in funding to construct the school’s primary academic and clinical facility in Sewell, N.J. The college plans to welcome its inaugural class of 60 students in fall 2025, pending approval from the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education (COE).
There are currently 33 veterinary schools in the U.S., the university reports.
“Continuing Rowan’s innovations in experiential learning, students will have early exposure to our on-site veterinary teaching hospital, as well as external clinical sites where they will work side-by-side with faculty and practicing veterinarians,” says founding dean, Matthew Edson, DVM. “This will allow them to gain ample real-world experience to promote day-one career readiness.”
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