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Dr. Jessie Juarez Named New Director of South Dakota State University’s Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine

Dr. Jessie Juarez has been named the new director of South Dakota State University’s Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine (PPVM).
“I am excited for the opportunity to provide leadership to the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine as we educate the next generation of veterinarians to serve South Dakota, the region and beyond,” said Juarez.
Juarez is the second person to serve as director of the new program, following in the footsteps of the former and recently retired director, Dr. Gary Gackstetter. In her previous role, she served as the PPVM assistant director, where she was heavily involved in managing the admissions process, coordinating faculty for the new program and teaching the program’s first cohort of students.
Prior to coming to SDSU in fall 2020, Juarez received her bachelor’s, master’s and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degrees at Iowa State University. After completing her degrees, she worked as an associate in a food animal veterinary practice in Waupun, Wisconsin, where she focused on embryo transfer, herd health, ultrasound and surgery.
Following her work in Wisconsin, Juarez then returned to ISU to teach in its Department of Animal Science and later worked as a clinical assistant professor for the ISU College of Veterinary Medicine, teaching a variety of courses and served as the coordinator of the clinical skills laboratory.
“I am excited to have Dr. Jessie Juarez step into the role of director for the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine at SDSU,” said Angela Pillatzki, head of the SDSU Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences and director of the South Dakota Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory. “Dr. Juarez has experience teaching veterinary curriculum, is committed to student success, and brings much energy and enthusiasm to the program. I am confident that the program will flourish under her leadership.”
As director of the PPVM, Juarez will be responsible for overseeing curriculum, working collaboratively with teaching faculty, staff and students, recruitment efforts, academic advising, admissions, accreditation, outcomes assessment and program policies.
“Our rural-focused program will graduate veterinarians that are prepared to excel in their chosen career path and meet the animal health needs across the upper Midwest.”
The program’s second 20-student cohort will begin classes in August 2022. Meanwhile, applications for the Class of 2027 are now open until September 15, 2022, and can be accessed at https://www.aavmc.org/becoming-a-veterinarian/.
About the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine
The Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine leading to a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree (DVM) is a new, collaborative program between SDSU and the University of Minnesota. Once students have completed their preveterinary requirements, the program will allow admitted students to complete the first two years of their veterinary medicine education at South Dakota State University and the final two years at the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine in St. Paul.
For more information about the Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine or to apply, visit www.sdstate.edu/ppvm.
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