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Two Tuskegee veterinary students receive $20k PetDesk Equity in Veterinary Medicine Scholarships

April 28, 2021

Anissa Riley, Director of External Affairs, TU College of Veterinary Medicine
Kevin O’Leary, PetDesk Senior Director of Marketing


Pauline Hunter and Aijah Bradford
Hunter and Bradford

TUSKEGEE, Ala. – The Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine (TUCVM) is pleased to announce the recipients of the PetDesk Equity in Veterinary Medicine Scholarship.  First-year student, Pauline Hunter and fourth-year student, Alijah Bradford, will each receive a $20,000 scholarship to help defray the cost of their veterinary medical education.

Ms. Hunter is a member of the Class of 2024 at the TUCVM. From a very young age, she was naturally drawn to animals and made up her mind that she would be a veterinarian. Ms. Hunter received her bachelor's degree from Talladega College.  Prior to entering the veterinary medical program, she was positive that she wanted to be a small animal veterinarian.  However, her interests broaden beyond small animal medicine into large animal medicine and everything in between. As a valued part of the process of being in veterinary school, she enjoys the exposure to everything that the veterinary field has to offer.

Ms. Bradford is a member of the Class of 2021 for TUCVM. She completed her undergraduate studies at Tuskegee University receiving a bachelor’s degree in Animal and Veterinary Sciences in 2016. While a veterinary student, she has had the opportunity to join many clubs and organizations. Currently, Ms. Bradford serves as the secretary for the Student Chapter of the Tuskegee University Student Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society. She has enjoyed serving the Tuskegee community over the years as a veterinary student helping to organize the Small Animal Health Fair and assisting in the TUCVM Summer Enrichment and Reinforcement Program (SERP). Following graduation, Ms. Bradford plans to go to Las Vegas, Nevada, and begin her career in general practice at a private practice animal hospital.

"We are very grateful to PetDesk for their inspiring and intentional commitment to the veterinary profession through the establishment of the PetDesk Equity in Veterinary Medicine Scholarship. The spirit of this scholarship aligns with the legacy of the Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine to embrace and advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the veterinary profession.   PetDesk’s vision and generosity will not only support students in the professional DVM program on track to becoming career-ready veterinarians, but also undergraduate pre-veterinary medical scholars aspiring to become veterinarians,” said Dr. Ruby L. Perry, Dean of the Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Awakened by the brutal murder of George Floyd in the summer of 2020, the PetDesk team decided to focus on giving marginalized groups, specifically people of color, better opportunities to pursue a career in veterinary medicine.  Launching their PetDesk Equity in Veterinary Medicine Program in the fall of 2020, they hope to see 10 million dollars of scholarships and grants going to underrepresented minorities in veterinary medicine in 2030.   

Taylor Cavanah, CEO and Co-Founder of PetDesk, spearheaded this scholarship program and strongly believes that the veterinary industry needs rebalancing. “When developing our Equity in Veterinary Medicine Program we knew we had to start at Tuskegee University. They have been dedicated to equity focused work for decades and we're honored to be a part of their larger programs, supporting those who need it most.” Mr. Cavanah added, “This scholarship work is but a taste of the positive changes Tuskegee fosters on a daily basis and PetDesk looks forward to growing our impact together.”

PetDesk is a company full of pet lovers passionate about promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in the veterinary industry. This scholarship recognizes students who join in this passion with a personal investment in equality, equity, and social justice. It also includes a focus to provide more equitable outcomes by lowering financial barriers for students pursuing a veterinary medical education.

About the Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine

Located in Alabama as one of the state’s two accredited veterinary programs, the Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine (TUCVM) was envisioned in 1944 by Dr. Frederick D. Patterson, founder of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), and officially established at Tuskegee in 1945. TUCVM 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 schools/colleges of veterinary medicine in the nation.  The College’s 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. For more information, visit

About PetDesk

PetDesk, an industry leader in veterinary client communication software, has helped over 2,500 veterinary practices streamline business with simple software solutions that help pet parents stay current and pet care providers stay connected to their pet’s health. PetDesk has garnered more than 2.5 million users by offering powerful features including a 5-Star Rated Pet Health Mobile App and industry-leading customer support. The nearly 200,000 reviews across the App/Google store are evidence of PetDesk's commitment to connecting pet owners to pet care providers. Founded in 2013, PetDesk secured a Series-B Investment of $12 million from Silicon Valley based PeakSpan Capital in December 2018. Headquartered in San Diego, PetDesk has more than 90 employees and proudly supports a gender-balanced and pet-friendly workforce. For more information about PetDesk, visit

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