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  News from the Maryland Veterinary Medical Association                                                    Winter 2012

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Cassie Wedd Receives Mitchell A. Essey Veterinary Public Practice Scholarship

The Center for Public and Corporate Veterinary Medicine, Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine (VMRCVM) is pleased to announce that Ms. Catherine (Cassie) Wedd has been selected as the first recipient of the Mitchell A. Essey Veterinary Public Practice Scholarship.

Ms. Wedd was selected from a strong field of veterinary students with remarkable backgrounds and experience in epidemiology and public practice. Ms. Wedd is a dual Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Master of Public Health student, who also holds a degree in nursing.

Ms. Wedd has worked in a wide range of public health arenas including with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Wyoming State Veterinary office in brucellosis control, and by coordinating the first World Rabies Day Event at VMRCVM. She plans on continuing her career in public health with interest in completing the CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service training.

Dr. Mitchell A. Essey received his DVM from Michigan State University in 1953. He practiced veterinary medicine in Michigan and Colorado before joining the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the early 1960s. While working as a field veterinarian conducting disease eradication activities in Colorado, Dr Essey developed a keen interest in the epidemiology of Mycobacterium bovis. He moved to California and earned a graduate degree in epidemiology from the University of California’s College of Veterinary Medicine at Davis, California and continued working for USDA as the regional bovine tuberculosis epidemiologist. He quickly developed special skills in identifying, tracing and eradicating tuberculosis from cattle and elk herds and his expertise was nationally recognized. He taught and mentored federal and state veterinarians and epidemiologists throughout the United States. He also presented and explained the United States animal disease control methods to animal health officials and veterinarians in several foreign countries.

Dr. Essey served as the National Tuberculosis Epidemiologist for USDA’s National Bovine Tuberculosis Eradication Program until his retirement in 2002. During his long and distinguished career Dr. Essey’s work contributed greatly to the dramatic reduction in the prevalence of bovine tuberculosis in the United States.

“We are honored and privileged to be able to award a scholarship that is both a tribute to Dr. Essey and a continuation of his lifelong commitment to public health and the development of veterinarians” says Dr. Valerie Ragan, Director, Center for Public and Corporate Veterinary Medicine, VMRCVM, “Dr. Essey served as a mentor to many during his career and helped me personally when I was a new USDA veterinarian, and now through the generous contributions of the Essey family we can continue his legacy. I know that Dr. Essey would have been proud that the first recipient of the scholarship in his honor is Ms. Cassie Wedd”

Donations in Dr. Essey’s memory will be greatly appreciated and will help ensure the continuation of the scholarship. If you wish to donate to this scholarship which has been established by the Essey family, please click here.

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