A message from our dean

Dr. Dana Zimmel

Dr. Dana Zimmel


As I write this, summer is in full swing. And while each season of college life is always filled with activities, this past month has been exceptionally fast-paced and exciting as we celebrated the grand opening of our new UF Veterinary Hospital at World Equestrian Center in Ocala — only a few days before commencement activities honoring the Class of 2022 and all their accomplishments.

We have a story in this issue about the new hospital opening, which will long be remembered by all who had a part in the design and planning aspects of the project as well as in our grand opening preview and ribbon cutting event held May 25, the day prior to the official opening of the facility to clients. We were thrilled with the turnout for this event; at least 1,000 people showed up to tour the large and small animal components of the building and enjoyed refreshments and the opportunity to visit with faculty and staff who’ll be working at the new UF Veterinary Hospital at WEC.

My list of those to gratefully acknowledge is long, but because I can’t thank these people enough, I want to reiterate my appreciation to the Roberts family, WEC’s owners, for their commitment to the project and their vision; to Drs. David Nelson and Scott Angle of UF Health and UF/IFAS, respectively, for their ongoing support; to our leadership team here at the college, including Andrea Miller, Drs. Chris Sanchez, Ali Morton and Gareth Buckley for planning and oversight; to Rachel DiSesa, client services manager for the UF Veterinary Hospitals, for her help in planning the event, and everyone else who has and will continue to play a role in the new hospital’s success.

You will be hearing more in the months to come about this incredible new facility and how we’re working to ensure access to leading-edge services for some of the world’s most elite equine athletes as well as horses and small animals from the local community.

I’d also like to say a few words about our newest graduates — the distinguished, talented and enterprising members of our Class of 2022.

On May 28, the 118 members of our Class of 2022 tipped their tassels to the left and received their D.V.M. degrees. Twenty-seven students graduated with high honors (3.75 GPA or higher) and 35 students graduated with honors (3.5-3.74 GPA.) Three of our graduates received M.P.H. degrees, and 68 students received professional certificates, with nine earning dual certificates, across our four certificate programs, in aquatic animal health, food animal, shelter medicine, and veterinary business management. We are so very proud of our new UFCVM alumni, our veterinarians of the future, and all they have accomplished.

We have also now seated the Class of 2026, consisting of 150 veterinary students with bright futures ahead of them. We were able to expand our class size by 20 students this year in order to better meet the well-documented national demand for veterinarians in the workplace, and I look forward to welcoming these students to UF and the Gator Nation later this summer.

Another story we’re happy to share with you highlights a new clinical rotation at the Alachua County Animal Resources and Care shelter. Through this clerkship, one of three we offer as part of our shelter medicine program, our students are honing their hands-on skills in surgery, while learning more about how our local shelter operates. Through the service our college provides to the shelter, we are able to contribute in yet another meaningful way to the community.

Thanks for everything you do to support the college and each other, every day and all year long. I hope you are all able to carve out some time this summer to breathe and do something good for yourself. Good self-care is so important, and easy to neglect if you’re not making it a priority, which I think we all struggle with at times. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you need to.


Dana N. Zimmel, D.V.M.
Dean and Professor

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May-June 2022

Dr. Zimmel

A message from our dean

A message from the college’s dean, Dr. Dana Zimmel.

Group Shot/Dist. Award winners

College’s 2022 Distinguished Award Winners announced

The college honored several outstanding veterinary practitioners and specialists in this year’s program.

Chris and Brandi Hrebenak with Suki

Dog treated at UF survives sepsis from infection believed due to cat scratch

Suki’s owners refused to give up on her, despite the challenges they faced.

Dog at ACAS

UF veterinary students gain shelter medicine skills through clerkship

The college has enhanced the offerings of its shelter program to better serve the local community while expanding student learning opportunities.

UF Veterinary Hospital at WEC

New UF Veterinary Hospital at World Equestrian Center now open

Ready access to UF’s veterinary expertise will benefit equine competitors and small animals on-site at WEC as well as from the local community.

UF CVM sign

Top research at college acknowledged during Phi Zeta Research Day

The two-day event featured poster and in-person presentations by house officers and professional and graduate students from the college.

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