Student wins national business aptitude award

Geoff Landau Simmons Award2015

UF veterinary student Geoff Landau, right, stands with Dr. Doyle Watson of Simmons and Associates.

A University of Florida veterinary student has won a national competition focused on the pursuit of business excellence in the veterinary medical profession.

Geoff Landau, a fourth-year student at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine, was named the winner of the Simmons Business Aptitude Award in January during the national Veterinary Business Management Association’s annual meeting in Orlando.

The award is given to senior students to bring attention to the importance of business education in veterinary practice.

As UF’s nominee for the award, Landau submitted a marketing project in a national contest among all of the various school winners from veterinary colleges throughout the United States as well as overseas. He was selected from among 17 national and international candidates.

Landau’s project involved crafting a marketing plan for a hypothetical veterinary hospital and focused on how technology would keep current clients and make the hospital visible to future clients.

The award consists of $15,000.

“I am humbled and honored to have been chosen as the recipient of this year’s SEF award,” Landau said. “The financial scholarship will allow me to not take out any tuition loans for my final semester of school, which will lower my monthly loan repayment fee and help me become student debt free faster.”

Martha Mallicote, D.V.M., a clinical assistant professor of large animal clinical sciences at UF and an instructor in the college’s business certificate program, said the award reflected the substantial work Landau has put into the business certificate program and the marketing project he submitted.

The college’s business certificate program offers veterinary students a means of strengthening their exposure to the business aspects of veterinary medicine through completion of a series of courses and a summer practice externship.

The award is funded through the Simmons Educational Fund, a non-profit corporation founded in 2002 by Simmons and Associates, a company that specializes exclusively in veterinary practice sales, valuations and negotiations.

“We at the SEF continue to be incredibly impressed by the effort, thoughtfulness and quality of work that all of the entrants display in their projects,” said Dave Gerber, D.V.M., a fund trustee. “The finalists were hard to separate due to the excellence of each of their projects. With students of this caliber, our profession will remain in good hands for years to come.”

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