Mentors, hands-on learning support veterinary students
April 22, 2020
By Liza Mayer
Brought to you by Atlantic Veterinary College
Veterinary medicine covers all species, including aquatic food animals. The Atlantic Veterinary College (AVC) is renowned worldwide for its animal health research. Its experts share their knowledge with AVC students through experiential learning opportunities in this field.
Kendall Wyman, AVC Class of 2022, became interested in aquaculture during the final year of her marine biology degree at the University of New Brunswick-Saint John. After finishing that degree, she earned an advanced diploma in sustainable aquaculture from the Fisheries and Marine Institute in St John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, in 2017–2018. She was then accepted into the veterinary medicine program at AVC.
In 2019, Wyman participated in the school’s veterinary student research award (VETSRA) program. She worked on a project to evaluate the health and survival of lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus) that live with Atlantic salmon in marine cage sites owned by Cooke Aquaculture Inc in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Wyman learned about lumpfish at varying levels of production, working alongside provincial veterinarians, academics, and company employees in the land- and sea-based aspects of lumpfish culture. She analyzed data from 2018 company records and collected prospective samples from a lumpfish hatchery and at three marine cage sites. Her project was co-supervised by Dr Larry Hammell, associate dean, AVC Graduate Studies and Research and a professor and researcher in aquatic animal health; and Dr Nicole O’Brien, a veterinary epidemiologist who works with the provincial government and an adjunct professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Wyman says working in aquaculture is a great fit for people like her who are passionate about population medicine and research.
“The aquaculture industry is incredibly diverse—from farming sea plants to shell- and finfish—which makes it a great fit for people who enjoy team-based approaches to data collection and analysis, and like to work with a variety of aquatic animal species,” she said.
Now at the halfway mark in her veterinary medicine education, she is looking forward to furthering her knowledge of fish health at AVC.
“AVC has built-in options to deliver fish-focused material to students, taught by some of the most well-known fish veterinarians and researchers in the world.”