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Tuskegee veterinary medicine students receive white coats, begin clinical studies

November 16, 2018

Anissa Riley, College of Veterinary Medicine, 334-724-4509, 
Michael Tullier, APR, Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing, 334-724-4553,


Tuskegee University Class of 2020 in white coats with special guests representing the veterinary medical associations in attendance and college administration.
Tuskegee University Class of 2020 in white coats with special guests representing
the veterinary medical associations in attendance and college administration.

On Saturday, Nov. 10, Tuskegee University’s College of Veterinary Medicine welcomed 59 of its students into the clinical phase of their professional doctor of veterinary medicine program. The college marked the class of 2020’s transition by presenting each with their white coats at the annual ceremony, held at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on the university’s campus.

“Our annual White Coat Ceremony is a celebratory moment for our students because it is the realization that they will now begin to put into practice during the clinical phase of the veterinary curriculum the classroom knowledge they have been obtaining,” said Dr. Ruby L. Perry, dean of the college. “Every step closer to our students becoming one of the career-ready veterinarians that Tuskegee University produces is where we place our focus, and we want our students to celebrate their accomplishments as well.”

Several veterinary medical associations sponsored the event and donated white coats to students from their respective states. Those organizations included the Alabama Veterinary Medical Association, represented by its president, Dr. Hank Lee; the Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association, represented by its president, Dr. Bonnie Barr; and the South Carolina Association of Veterinarians, represented by its president, Dr. Wendi Lilly-Bare.

Dr. Roslyn Casimir, associate dean for academic and student affairs, presided over the program.

The ceremony itself included announced greetings from Dr. Harvey Crumm, senior academic liaison with Zoetis Animal Health, which also sponsored the event, as well as Tuskegee alumna Dr. Beverly Miller representing Banfield Pet Hospital, which also served as an event sponsor. Also representing the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine, which partners with Tuskegee on a number of academic and research collaborations, was Associate Dean Dan Givens.

The Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine is the only veterinary medical professional program located on the campus of a historically black college or university (HBCU) in the United States. Accredited by the American Veterinary Medicine Association Council on Education, the college has educated more than 70 percent of the nation’s African-American veterinarians and received recognition as the most diverse of all 30 schools/colleges of veterinary medicine in the U.S.

Under the Regional Plan for Veterinary Training, the college currently serves veterinary medicine students hailing from Alabama, Kentucky, South Carolina, not to mention other states. In addition to a doctor in veterinary medicine (DVM), the college offers master’s degrees in veterinary sciences and public health, and doctoral degrees in interdisciplinary pathobiology and integrative biosciences. Learn more at

Alabama students receiving white coats funded by the Alabama Veterinary Medical Association included Alexandria D. Bufford, Airene F. Carver, Jonathan M. Gunn, Carsen T. McDonald, and Bradley C. Stinson.

Kentucky students receiving white coats funded by the Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association included Victoria A. Coomber and Amanda K. Cvengros.

South Carolina students receiving white coats from the South Carolina Association of Veterinarians included Gavin L. Beard, Randolph Green, Angelica L. Martin, and Chantel P. Simmons.

Students of other states also receiving white coats during the ceremony included Drew J. Agnew, Na’Imah N. Anderson, Taneisha D. Benson, Kaya S. Bryant, Cameron Q. Buck, Brandon M. Butler, Gabrielle A. Carson, James L. Charlot, Maria E. Colon, Geishly A. Cruz Matos, Shahkila N. Daniels, Sheridan B. Dillon-Robinson, Elizabeth J. Forster,  Channing C. Hatchett, Travares L. Heath, Zhane’ N. Jackson, Christina M. Kaye, Krystal P. Lebron Ortiz, Annie Lin, Victor M. Lopez, Lynh M. Ly, Jasmine N. Lyons, Jacqueline D. Mack, Tracy H. Mandrona, Laurie M. Mangeli, Daniela M. Martin, Keila M. Martinez Medina, Adalis Montero Reguero, Tina S. Montgomery, Lizbeth M. Morilla, Danielle N. McCullough, Imani N. Nicolis, Aubery R. Norman, Pedro J. Olivencia, Luis A. Pizarro Viera, Brandon E. Powell, Lorena Sandoval, Anthony O. Sena, Crystal A. Serrano, Imani C. Smith, Kimberly Snook, Ariel R. Truitt, Christina R. VanTassel, Alexandra M. Varela Ortiz, Jamie M. Wall, Damali D. Zakers, Juliana Zamora, and Jose P. Zayas.

© 2018, Tuskegee University