Three distinguished veterinary students aspiring toward careers in equine medicine have been selected to receive a $75,000 Coyote Rock Ranch Veterinary Scholarship. The scholarships will be awarded by the AAEP Foundation on Dec. 3 during the American Association of Equine Practitioners’ (AAEP) 64th Annual Convention in San Francisco, California.
The scholarship recipients, who were chosen from nearly 80 exceptional applicants and each of whom share a passion for performance horse medicine, are:
- Ashley Allemand, Louisiana State University
- Brian Blanchard, Atlantic Veterinary College
- Rachel Pfeifle, Auburn University
“This award is truly life-changing,” said Allemand, who hopes to own her own equine sports medicine practice one day. “The financial freedom offered by this award brings me closer to achieving my goals in veterinary medicine. Upon graduation from veterinary school, my career decisions will be focused on becoming the best equine veterinarian I can be, rather than my financial situation.”
“I am very grateful for the financial support given to me by the AAEP Foundation and Coyote Rock Ranch,” Blanchard echoed. “Funds that would have otherwise gone to making loan payments will now be reallocated to investing in equipment and continuing education applicable to performance horse practice. This ultimately translates to being able to provide better service to my future clients and patients.”
Pfeifle struggled to remember a time when she didn’t want to be an equine veterinarian, despite the obstacles along the way.
“Ultimately, it’s about helping the horses and their people, so when I think about that, all of those difficulties pale in comparison,” she said. “By pursuing further education and learning from some of the brightest minds in equine medicine, I truly believe I’ll be better equipped to help our equine partners to the best of my ability.”
Coyote Rock Ranch, owned by Penelope Knight and located in Central Oregon, is a breeding operation for high-end cutting horses. Knight, an avid horsewoman and strong advocate for horse health, created the Coyote Rock Ranch Veterinary Scholarship in 2015. Since the first scholarships were awarded in 2016, 10 AAEP student members have benefited from a cumulative $750,000 in assistance.
“With the help of the AAEP Foundation, I am pleased to offer this great opportunity to benefit our next generation of veterinarians,” Knight said. “Helping future veterinarians is one way I am able to give back to the industry I hold dear to my heart, and I will continue my support for years to come.”
For more information about the AAEP Foundation’s scholarship programs, visit https://foundation.aaep.org/apply-for-funding/scholarships.