Cabot partnering with Lyon College veterinary medicine school
Students at Arkansas’ first veterinary school will get hands-on experience thanks to a new partnership.
The agreement between Batesville-based Lyon College and the City of Cabot will see students work directly with the city’s Animal Support Services as part of their studies.
Speaking with Little Rock Public Radio ahead of Tuesday’s announcement, Lyon College President Melissa Taverner said working in a clinic setting will help give students a leg up after graduation.
“They are going to become what we call ‘practice-ready’ upon graduation. They will get the skills and the experience to make them effective immediately, and then Cabot will have access to a ready supply of students and faculty and cutting-edge technologies that are going to help them be more effective in their clinic,” Taverner said.
Taverner says the partnership will help bolster the vet school’s “distributed model” emphasizing on-the-job learning in the community.
“The first two years, the students will be on-site at the vet school in Little Rock. But after that, they finish out their academic career in vet school by going to a range of clinics to get direct, hands-on experience,” she said.
Aside from caring for animals, Taverner said Cabot Animal Support Services is also seeking to boost the health and welfare of the city’s human residents as well.
“Animal health is important for human health, particularly as we are so close to many of our companion animals. And if we can find ways to help take care of the companion animals, then we’ll be able to address some of the issues that come with human health as well.”
Taverner says the veterinary school is still on track to open in late summer or early fall 2025 in downtown Little Rock. School officials will have their first visit with a national accrediting body in early November.