Alumnus Continues his Education at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine
Steven R. Hinkle ’22, a small animal science alumnus, recently started studying at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.
Prior to being accepted to Cornell’s program, Hinkle interned at a wildlife center called AARK Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center. Here, he was tasked with feeding various wild animals, cleaning out their cages, restraining them, and administering food orally to baby squirrels and birds.
“I learned a ton while being at this internship such as to how to restrain wild animals and how to properly care for them like their nutrition and cage requirements,” said Hinkle. “I am grateful I had to do this for my E360 requirement because without E360, I don’t think I would have pushed myself to intern here,” he adds, referring to DelVal’s awarding-winning experiential learning program.
Throughout all his courses at DelVal, Hinkle was able to gain experience with a wide variety of species and learn basic skills that have propelled his education in vet school. For example, Hinkle was able to participate in milking cows through his Dairy Science course and learn how to breed animals through his Reproduction course. And by conducting student research with Dr. Shelly, associate professor of animal biotechnology and conservation, he was able to learn the various factors of how to properly conduct a study. With Dr. Shelly, Hinkle looked at the effects of catnip and silvervine on feline and lagomorph serotonin levels.
“It was pretty interesting to do and allowed me to look at the other side of research for the first time, not reading it but actually performing it,” explained Hinkle. “It also was a great bonding experience with two other of my fellow students and Dr. Shelly too.”
Hinkle enjoyed handling a wide variety of animals at DelVal, as he had never been on a farm or assisted in helping with farm animals before coming to DelVal. Hinkle intended to travel abroad with Dr. Tanya Casas, dean of Business and Humanities, and Margaret Liguori, lecturer of animal biotechnology and conservation, for an ecotourism course, but the trip was canceled due to COVID-19. Although he didn’t get to travel, Hinkle described the class as a chance to look at our world and how tourism is conducted in a whole new light.
“The classes at DelVal are super unique and that helped pique my interests,” said Hinkle.
During his time at DelVal, Hinkle was involved in Pre-vet Club, Association of American Zoo Keepers (AAZK), Student Government Board, and Equine Club. He makes it clear that DelVal students and faculty made the campus feel like a family through their openness to different opinions and viewpoints. Hinkle was also drawn to DelVal because of the unique opportunity to pursue a potential 4+1 program, which allows students to earn both an undergraduate and graduate degree within just five years. Although he decided not to take the 4+1 opportunity, it was still a major contributor to why he chose DelVal.
Congratulations and best wishes to Steven in his journey with Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine!