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Global Learning

CMU Tech Vet Tech Program's inclusive approach to global learning

Layna Schmit, a dedicated vet tech student at CMU Tech, embarked on a transformative academic journey with the university's innovative study abroad program. Representing a groundbreaking initiative that offers the opportunity for students, Schmit enrolled in a two-year program to participate in an international study experience.

"The trip was the first of what we hope is a regular opportunity for students. It allows them to work with professional conservationists and further their veterinary technology skills," said CMU Tech Instructor of Veterinary Technology Anneke Moresco, PhD.

This pioneering approach underscored CMU's commitment to inclusive education, challenging the conventional notion that studying abroad is exclusively reserved for traditional four-year degree-seeking students. Intrigued by the prospect of combining her academic pursuits with hands-on learning in a global setting, Schmit seized the opportunity to study abroad in Costa Rica to deepen her understanding of howler monkeys.

When asked about the trip, Schmit said, "The trip provided me with insight into the experience of traveling abroad, conducting research and networking. It taught me stepping out of my comfort zone is essential for personal growth, inspiring me to pursue further education in the veterinary field."

Under the guidance of Moresco and local experts, Schmit immersed herself in intensive research and fieldwork, studying howler monkeys in their natural habitat. This learning opportunity equipped Schmit with invaluable insights into primate behavior, wildlife conservation and cross-cultural understanding.

"We had the opportunity to work with several collaborating institutions North Carolina State University, International Animal Rescue and Instituto Mexicano de Fauna Silvestre y Animales de Compañía, to assess the health of 38 howler monkeys that are being rehabilitated at the sanctuary," said Moresco.

Schmit's journey highlighted CMU's commitment to innovation and inclusivity in education, reflecting the university's dedication to preparing students for success in a globally interconnected society. Her story serves as inspiration for students, emphasizing the impact of international study experiences on future leaders in veterinary medicine and beyond.


Written by Madelynn Fellet