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  Leadership Experience    
The freshman leadership camp has several purposes. Recent national studies within veterinary medicine have called for veterinary colleges to do more in developing the non-technical competencies needed for successful provision of veterinary services. Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicineís freshman leadership camp is one way in which WSU CVM has responded to this call. Other reasons include having fun while building a sense of community between students, faculty and administration, emphasizing cooperation rather than competition between students, defusing anxieties associated with entering professional programs, teambuilding, improving communication skills, and problem-solving.

The freshman leadership camp is held each year during the week prior to the start of fall semester. Almost all members of each incoming class currently attend the camp along with selected upper class representatives, faculty, and administrators. In fact, significant effort is exerted by the College to facilitate the opportunity for each student to attend. The camp typically runs three days. The site is Ross Point Conference Center in Post Falls, Idaho. Participants are bused to the camp site and back. Camp accommodations range from hotel style rooms to rustic cabins designed to sleep up to twelve.

The majority of the curriculum for the camp is based upon experiential learning of emotional intelligence and servant leadership through teambuilding activities and ethical discussions. Having fun in this process remains a key element of the camp. Bug races, a dinner cruise on Lake Coeur Dí Alene, and evening campfires with smores are traditional social activities.

As the camp has become more established and improved, other supporting activities have evolved that are directed towards student spouses, significant others, and family. For example, educational seminars suggested by previous classes have been implemented that assist loved ones with acclimating to the Pullman area along with what to expect as a result of the academic demands placed upon the students. Pet sitting services are also provided by upper class member so that first year students can attend camp.

Each year suggestions from the students are incorporated into the development of the following yearís camp. The number of students who are willing to volunteer to return as upper class representatives has grown substantially, and has required the implementation of a lottery system to determine who gets the privilege of returning as upper class representatives.

Each year, WSU CVM also hosts representatives from other programs and organizations who come to this student leadership camp to get ideas on how to facilitate similar activities at their home program or to gain an understanding of the personal growth that occurs. To date, the preponderance of the cost associated with this camp has been graciously provided by Hillís Pet Nutrition. The number of allied organizations willing to support this camp continues to grow by virtue of reports submitted by their representatives who have personally observed the benefit to the students.

Please click on the corresponding link for images from each yearís camp.

Class of 2008     Class of 2007      Class of 2006 

Veterinary Leadership Experience 2004

Revised July 16, 2008     |     Printer Friendly Version

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