BSc Networking Event July 23rd - Andrea Bajus

Through the OVC Summer Core program, I attended the BSc Stream Networking Event. There were 5 speakers at this event: Dr. Tyler Hickey, Dr. Danika Hawthorn, Dr. Steven Roche, Dr. Benjamin Van Galen, and Dr. Adena Commisso. Although I found each of the speakers’ presentations interesting, I personally found Dr. Steven Roche’s presentation caught my attention the most because it was the most applicable and relatable to me and what I would like to do in the future.

Dr. Roche spoke about the epidemiology consulting company, ACER, which he started after finishing is postdoctoral studies. He talked about the company and the three main things that the company does: animal health and welfare research focused specifically on food animals; field work with researchers and pharmaceutical companies, which also involves improving the overall management on farms; and lastly, qualitative and mixed methods research looking at the perspectives and opinions of veterinarians and producers within the industry. Dr. Roche also works as a faculty member for the Population Medicine department at the University of Guelph.

It was great listening to Dr. Roche talk about the path he took to becoming an epidemiologist and faculty member at the university. After his presentation, Dr. Roche answered questions about his career, research, and the path to becoming an epidemiologist and doing what you love. My career goals and the pathway I want to take to them are very similar to the path that Dr. Roche took. Ideally, I’d like to do my Masters and PhD to become an epidemiologist that works closely with agriculture animals, specifically dairy cattle and calves. Dr. Roche’s presentation really reassured me that I don’t necessarily need a DVM to become an epidemiologist and still work with animals. His passion and how much he enjoys his job really inspired me to keep pursing a career in epidemiology and makes me excited for what the future holds!

Thank you to the OVC Summer Core program for providing us with the opportunity to attend these events and learn more about all of the pathways that we can go down.