October 5, 2012

Wrapping up a great month.

By Kristin Pufpaff

Dana and I headed off to the National Zoo this morning; it seemed like a fitting way to spend out last morning. The otters were the best part, they seem to feel like it was their job to put on a good show, swimming up to the glass and generally being playful and cute.

As I close my final week in D.C. that has been filled with FDA meetings, World Wildlife Fund Seminars and a great luncheon at the AVMA President’s Roundtable, I am both saddened and excited. I am ready to head back to Ohio and see my husband and cats but I will miss the opportunity I have had while in D.C. to learn about something new every day and meet with knowledgeable and friendly people.

I will never forget the time that I have spent in with the AVMA-GRD. I have met so many great people within the AVMA and in the great Washington D.C. veterinary community. It is great to meet so many people who are really trying to make a difference in some small part of the world. From the FDA to Capitol Hill and the World Wildlife Fund, people seem to be here for a reason. They feel like they have something to offer and are trying their best to do the right thing. You always hear about the negative aspects of the political posturing that happens on the Hill, but the vast majority of people that Dana and I have met over the last four weeks and been kind and just as willing to listen as they are to talk to students. I’m not claiming that it is all sunshine and roses in D.C. but the weather and people have been great over the last four weeks and I can’t think of any other experience that I could have done in order to gain the same connections and perspectives.

I would also like to send out a special thanks to the AVMA-GRD staff who have been so welcoming and helpful to Dana and myself. These four weeks would not have been possible without Dr. Mark Lutschaunig, Gina Luke, Dr Whitney Miller, Dr. Ashley Morgan, Stephanie Fisher, Patty Mayo, and Valerie Goddard.