What do past participants have to say about COLE?
The following video was recorded in March 2013 (so do not expect the weather at
COLE to be cold ☺)
COLE was a great chance to get to know some of my fellow students before
classes started. It is done without the stress and craziness of classes. You
won’t meet everyone, but at the very least they become familiar faces when
you get to CVM. This helps set a foundation for the next four years and it
will help you start your journey in the right direction. It was this
foundation which made four years of vet school better and it eventually
better prepared me as I continued on my own journey after graduation.
~~Dr. Michael Clark~~
COLE was a highlight of my vet school experience! It was awesome to
be able to meet my classmates in a relaxed and fun atmosphere, as well as
the older vet student mentors and faculty--some of which are still my
mentors to this day. (I had so much fun that I went back to COLE twice as a
student mentor!) It was also very helpful to learn about the concepts
that are taught at COLE, such as client communication, emotional
intelligence, and leadership because I use these skills everyday as a
veterinarian. Overall, the biggest asset of COLE is that it sets the
stage for your class to become colleagues instead of competitors and helps
you to create bonds of friendship within your class. By having that
framework in place before the first day of vet school starts, it will help
you and your class stay strong and stick together as a team when school
starts getting tough.
~~Dr. Lisa Otto~~
I think COLE has a very powerful impact on students, though those impacts
are hard to quantify. What I see happening with students is a radical
shift in perspective. For example, talking about letting go of
competition and cooperating (reinforced by the group experiential exercises)
is really an important shift. I think COLE also encourages students to
think more broadly about themselves and their lives---that their worth isn't
just about grades and their profession, but about the kind of people they
are. I think it introduces the idea that the veterinary profession is
a people business, and not just a medical one. I think all the ideas
that are introduced at COLE---normal personality differences (as exemplified
by the different MBTI profiles), servant leadership, emotional
intelligence, and coomunication---are all ideas that are expanded upon
throughout the non-technical professional curriculum. To use the
metaphor of farming, it's like COLE prepares the ground and plants some
seeds that over the next 4 years can grow into maturity.
~~Dr. Carolyn Wyatt~~
WSU College of Veterinary Medicine Psychologist
When I first moved up to Washington, I did so alone. I was very
intimidated by being by myself in a new place and starting vet school.
I don't know if the new students coming in will have heard of the "impostor
syndrome", but I definitely had it. Anyway, COLE was a wonderful means
of helping me to understand why I was chosen to be a part of WSU's
veterinary program and how I can be of service to the animals and clients I
will see, as well as my classmates. It was also a great way to make
friends and get to know people- COLE had a way of creating a sense of
teamwork among the new students rather than a competitive atmosphere.
I came away from the experience not only relieved that I knew more about the
people with whom I would be spending the next four years, but I started
school with so much more confidence in myself than when I moved to Pullman.
After COLE, I knew that with patience, hard work, teamwork, and faith in
myself, I would achieve my goal of becoming the best doctor I could be.
~~Dr. Jen Hylin~~
I think COLE is a very good thing – notably for students in the entering
class to get to know each BEFORE all hell breaks loose! Back in my
day, we just showed up scared, alone and each convinced we were the dumbest
person in the class. It was terrifying! This is SO much better.
~~Dr. Steve Hines~~
Professor of your Immunology and Systemic Pathology
COLE was an awesome experience. It gave me a chance to come together with
my classmates prior to starting school, and get to know them through games,
leadership activities, and down time by the river. COLE provided me with
tools to maintain balance in my life during vet school. COLE also gave me
the opportunity to meet faculty and staff that I would be working with
during my four years at WSU. There was a much stronger sense of camaraderie
in my class after our time at COLE. COLE inspired me to get involved in
student leadership, and I would encourage you to be open to new experiences
during your time at COLE. Relax, have fun, and welcome to the WSU family!
~~CPT Emily Pieracci, DVM WSU Class of 2009~~
US Army Veterinary Corps
Having students develop some common ground and get to know each other a
bit at COLE before classes start has a noticeably positive effect on the
environment in the anatomy lab – which is important given how much time the
students spend there during Fall semester! Different students find
COLE valuable for different reasons, but a consistent outcome has been that
the anatomy labs feel more relaxed from the start, and students are
generally a little more comfortable working with their colleagues because a
lot of the introductions and ice-breaking have already been done at COLE.
It’s great that students feel better, of course, but it’s valuable from an
academic standpoint as well because people learn better when they’re more at
ease in their environment.
~~Dr. Leslie Sprunger~~
Professor of your anatomy and physiology courses