On Thursday, Oct. 4, Alabama Representative Mike Rogers visited with administrators and faculty in Tuskegee University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and toured the college’s veterinary medical teaching hospital and research laboratories. The visit was his first to the college’s facilities.
Rogers indicated his work on a broadband initiative for rural areas, which played a key role in this year’s Farm Bill passage, and Alabama’s role in the agriculture economy are among his legislative priorities. These efforts coincide with his service as a senior member of both the Agriculture Committee and Committee on Homeland Security.
“As we know, food security is significant and impacts us all. Alabama is the largest producer of chickens, and agriculture is the number one sector of Alabama’s economy,” Rogers said.
Dr. Ruby L. Perry, the college’s dean, emphasized how teaching and research initiatives within the College of Veterinary Medicine, with additional resources to sustain them, can be vital to those goals.
“Alabama’s economy is heavily dependent on all areas of agriculture, which include all types of food animals and aquaculture,” Perry explained. “Our Center of Excellence for Food Animal Health and Food Safety would play a significant role in supporting Alabama’s agricultural industry through research and extension. Our researchers’ success in developing tools to detect foodborne pathogens and food threat agents, as well as embryo technology, can be beneficial to both state and national priorities.”
In addition to Perry, Rogers’ received updates from college officials who included Dr. Roslyn Casimir, associate dean for academic and student affairs; Dr. Gopal Reddy, interim associate dean for research and advanced studies; Catina Woods Sistrunk, executive director for resource development and external relations; and Dr. Woubit Abdela, director of the college’s Center of Excellence for Food Animal Health. Rogers also visited with university administrators, including Dr. Roberta Troy, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs; and Dr. Charles Smith, chief operating officer.
Tuskegee University’s College of Veterinary Medicine is one of only two veterinary programs in the state, and both are located within the 3rd Congressional District. The college is the only veterinary medical professional program located on the campus of a historically black college or university (HBCU) in the United States. The college has educated more than 70 percent of the nation’s African-American veterinarians and has been recognized as the most diverse of all 30 schools/colleges of veterinary medicine in the nation. Its primary mission is to provide an environment that fosters a spirit of active, independent and self-directed learning, intellectual curiosity, creativity, critical thinking, problem solving, ethics, and leadership; and promotes teaching, research and service in veterinary medicine and related disciplines.
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