Gifts in Action

Your Gifts Tell the Story

Behind every gift to WSU's College of Veterinary Medicine is a story. The detection of a new disease helps save lives. A scholarship makes school more affordable. A beloved animal's life is saved from cancer. From everyone at the college, you have our sincere gratitude for your generous support.

  • A WSU Small Animal Intern Gets Specialized Critical Care Training thanks to a Gift from The Dean H. Smith Excellence Fund

    Story by Marcia Hill Gossard ’99, ’04

    Marie-Lou Gauthier

    Marie-Lou Gauthier,
    WSU Small Animal Intern

    After earning a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from the University of Montreal, Marie-Lou Gauthier was thrilled to be accepted as an intern at the WSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital to further her education and gain more hands on experience. So she felt very fortunate when she and other WSU interns were given the opportunity to spend two weeks at the Animal Critical Care and Emergency Services (ACCES) in Seattle.

    "Getting a chance to be in a private practice and speak with a criticalist and learn as much as I could was a great experience," said Gauthier. "It really increased our confidence."

    While at ACCES, the interns were able to work on a wide range of cases with the critical care medical team and the other veterinarians. They were also encouraged to be involved in the patient cases and go along on rounds with the critical care veterinarian.

    The opportunity was possible thanks to the Dean H. Smith Excellence Fund. The fund was established by Dr. Dean Smith ('49 WSU DVM) to support his alma mater.

    After she finishes the WSU internship, Marie-Lou plans to do a specialized neurology internship in Texas and after that she will apply for a neurology residency. Her hope is to become board certified and work as a neurologist at a university.

    She is grateful for the experience she's had at WSU and believes her time at ACCES will help her succeed in her career.

    "It was really important see how emergency care worked in a private practice," said Gauthier. "It gave me a new perspective about what emergency medicine is."

  • Giving Back Just a Little Makes a Big Difference in a Student's Life

    Story by Marcia Hill Gossard ’99, ’04

    Billy Hansen

    (l to r): Charlie (3), Laurel,
    Hank (5), Billy, and Ike (6 months)

    As a non-traditional student with a wife and three kids to support, Billy Hansen ('14 DVM) has a lot on his plate. Because of the skyrocketing costs of a veterinary education, Billy, like so many of his classmates, relies almost entirely on student loans to pay for school. So when he received the $750 Dr. Aaron and Laura Gibbons Family "Giving Back" Scholarship it meant a lot.

    "It was a small amount compared to my student loans, but it made the burden of the semester lighter," said Hansen. "I didn't have to worry so much about finances and that helped me concentrate on school and my studies."

    Before coming to WSU in 2010, Billy, who is originally from rural Utah, attended the University of Utah as a business major after serving a mission in Brazil. But during his last year he decided it was veterinary medicine, not business, that was his calling. He and his wife moved to Logan and he finished a bio-veterinary sciences degree at Utah State.

    During Billy's first year as a WSU veterinary student he met Aaron Gibbons ('11 DVM), then in his fourth year of veterinary school and also a non-traditional student.

    "We had a lot in common," said Hansen. So it felt like a bit of kismet when he was awarded the Dr. Aaron and Laura Gibbons Family "Giving Back" Scholarship.

    "It was really thoughtful the Gibbons provided this scholarship," said Hansen. "I am grateful that I got it."

    Aaron and Laura Gibbons

    Aaron Gibbons and his wife Laura

    After he graduates in 2014, Billy and his family plan to move back to Utah where he hopes to find a position at a mixed-animal, private practice. Ultimately, he has even bigger career aspirations.

    "My goal is to one day buy into my own practice," he said.

    Aaron Gibbons ('11 DVM and SAVMA president 2011) and his family know first-hand how expensive it is to earn a veterinary degree. Tuition since 1996 has nearly tripled and in-state students now pay more than $22,000 a year. Just one year after he graduated, Aaron and his wife Laura gave $750 to establish the Dr. Aaron and Laura Gibbons Family "Giving Back" Scholarship to help a current student. Student scholarships can help defray some of the costs of education putting our students in a more competitive position as they start their careers.